Sherbaz Khan Mazari

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Sherbaz Khan Mazari
Sherbaz Khan Mazari in his house at Karachi
Leader of the Opposition
In office
17 August 1975 – 5 July 1977
Preceded by Khan Abdul Wali Khan
Succeeded by Fakhar Imam
Personal details
Born (1930-10-06) 6 October 1930 (age 83)
Rojhan, British Raj
(now Pakistan)
Political party Independent (Before 1975)
National Democratic Party (1975–1977)
Pakistan National Alliance (1977–1981)
Movement for the Restoration of Democracy (1981–1988)

Sardar Sherbaz Khan Mazari is a prominent Pakistani politician and the former leader of the opposition in the National Assembly hailing from the Baloch, Mazari tribe situated in Rojhan-Mazari.

Early life[edit]

He was born at Rojhan on 6 October 1930 to Mir Murad Baksh Khan, Chief of the Mazari Tribe; he lost his mother when he was one and father when he was two. As an orphan he, along with his two brothers and three sisters, was placed under the guardianship of the British Government. He studied at Aitchison College at Lahore and until partition at the Royal Indian Military College at Dera Doon.

Politics[edit]

Sardar Sherbaz Khan Mazari entered politics by supporting Miss Fatima Jinnah, sister of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, against Ayub Khan in the Presidential elections of 1964. In 1970 he was elected to the National Assembly as an independent candidate . He was a signatory to the 1973 Constitution, as head of the independent group in the Assembly.

After the Bhutto led army action in Balochistan and the subsequent banning of the National Awami Party, he formed the National Democratic Party. This was part of an effort to oppose Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto's autocratic rule as well as to bring about peace in Balochistan. He served as the leader of the NDP from 1975 to 1985 and the leader of the Opposition in Parliament from 1975-1977.

A former friend of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, he became one of his main political opponents in the Pakistan National Alliance. The 1977 elections led to a civil agitation movement which ultimately ousted Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto's government and brought in Martial Law under General Zia. DuringGeneral Zia's regime he again played a key role in opposing the military regime .He helped establish Movement for the Restoration of Democracy( MRD), an alliance of opposition parties which included the Pakistan Peoples Party. He spearheaded a movement against the military government as the Chairman of MRD's "Pakistan Bachao "(Save Pakistan )Committee. The resulting agitation caused widespread commercial disruption in Sindh and parts of Punjab and but was brutally suppressed by the army at a cost of many lives . It was only after Zia's death did democracy finally return to Pakistan.

A strong believer of democracy Sardar Mazari was incarcerated on numerous occasions during both Zulfikar ali Bhutto and General Zia's rule. He was one of the few West Pakistani politicians to have opposed the army action in what was then East Pakistan against the Bengali's and the only opponent of Zulfikar Bhutto to have condemned his judicial murder. He has been an outspoken critic of the treatment meted out to Balochi separatists by the Central Government

He was defeated in the 1988 general elections due to differences within the Mazari tribe apparently engineered by "the Establishment" and retired from politics greatly disillusioned. In 1999, he wrote his memoir - Pakistan: A Journey to Disillusionment.[1]

This autobiography not only received excellent reviews but also proved to be a best seller within Pakistan and among Pakistanis living abroad.

Family[edit]

He is the brother of Mir Balakh Sher Mazari the chief of Mazari Tribe and Former Caretaker prime minister of Pakistan.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Khan Abdul Wali Khan
Leader of the Opposition
1975–1977
Succeeded by
Fakhar Imam