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Electoral Politics of Jamat-e-Islami Pakistan (1987-2009)
Jamat-e-Islami (JI) started as a social movement in 1941 and became an influential group to support Islamic constitution in Pakistan. Later, the leaders of this movement decided to take part in electoral politics. And in 1957, the movement evolved into a political Party. In 1964, JI was banned by the dictator Ayub Khan, because they did not support the regimes’ unconstitutional martial law. After Ayub khan, the Bhutto suppressed all opposition parties including JI. In addition to this, General Zia shared power with JI for some time but quickly stripped it of all authority. It can be concluded that JI was never allowed freely participate in the political system of Pakistan. JI also suffered the schisms in the organizational structure because of its strict rules and regulations. However, Qazi Hussain Ahmad took certain measures to push JI in main stream of Pakistani politics. An attempt to find out how JI was operated in electoral politics from 1987 to 2009 has been made in this paper. It has used the Columbian school of thought as a model. This model rationalizes election on the sociological perspective, where voters are influenced by the left-right, ideological orientations, and by religion, sect, ethnicity, class, caste, rural and urban divisions. The data is collected by researching secondary sources that discussed and evaluated the electoral politics in Pakistan. A content analysis method is used to analyze the data leading to the stated findings about JI’s electoral strategies.
Jamat-e-Islami, Muttahedda Majlis-e-Amal, Islami Jamhoori Ittehad
Jamat-e-Islami is one of the oldest Islamic revivalist movement and Islamic political party and based on the thoughts of Syed Mawdudi. JI has articulated clearly political version of Islam. The party has been struggling for the restructuring of society and politics as well as the establishment of a state that would represent the spirit of Islamic law: replacing the secular state with an Islamic one. The JI is perhaps the first movement of its kind to develop systematically an Islamic ideology, a modem revolutionary reading of Islam, and an agenda for social action to materialize its vision. JI political philosophy revolved around the concept of Theo-democracy means to form government through democratic process, governing according to the rules of Quran and Sunnah.
The party was established based on strong organizational structure with clear lines of authority and a hierarchical structure and a country wide branches. The members were recruited through a vast network of madrassas and its school wings. The hierarchy started with hamdard (sympathizer) followed by mutaffiq (affiliate) and then reached rukan (member). The party is headed by Amir (leader), who consults a governing shura (consultative body). JI has many affiliated organizations such as Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT), Islami Jamaiat Talibat and Jamait Talba Arabia for students, Khawateen Wing for Women and Alkhidamt for Social work etc.
JI was formed as revivalist party in 1941 by Muslim Thinker and socio-political philosopher Syed Mawdudi, who also served the party as Amir till 1972. After the partition, Syed Mawdudi along with other JI leaders and members moved to newly born state of Pakistan. Other leaders who stayed in India established separate organization named Jamat-e-Islami Hind.
Since 1947 Pakistan, JI has not been successful to control the central power of the state, although it has a vital role in important political events that have shaped in the history of Pakistan. The party occupied central role during the constitutional debate of 1956 and 1973. Due to this the Islamic provisions were included in the constitution of 1973.
Soon after the creation of Pakistan, JI focused on the cultivation of its own leadership cadre in Pakistan’s educational Institutes and promote its ideology among the students. Students wing IJT was founded in December in 1947. First time the party contested provincial election in 1951 won one seat in Punjab. The Machchi Goth Affairs held in 1957, where JI decided to actively participate in electoral politics, followed by strong presence in Karachi Municipal election in 1959. And since then it consistently struggle to break into Pakistan’s crowded electoral arena.
Party sought to sustain a certain distance from Pakistan Military and civilian leadership during 1950s and 1960s. Since 1947, the party has developed the concept of lift-right wing politics in Pakistan politics. General Ayub was in favor of westernize Islam while JI has mobilized opposition against his dictatorial rule. As a reaction Ayub banned the party and later on, Supreme Court declared illegitimate ban on the party. The election of 1970 was contested based on ‘Islamization’ as well as the slogan of united Pakistan. The electoral weaknesses of the party apparent in the election, when the party secured only four seats in the national Assembly. In 1977, JI led the alliance of PNA against secular Bhutto government. Mian Tufail the successor of Syed Mawdudi developed close relations with military establishment and supported Zia regime and his Islamization process till 1987.
Elections are considered the main stage of electoral processing a modern democracy. The study of electoral politics has been described as ‘psephology’. Elections are complicated political process which is analyzed based on political and social systems of a given state. Through electoral process the transfer of power shift from one set up to other (Akhtar, Awan, & Haq, 2010). There are many approaches to study election such as Michigan approach, Downsian theory and Columbia school of thought. These electoral studies have been conducted by American and British schools of thought in 1940s and 50s. The aims of Michigan approach is to bringing out relationship between party identification and volatility. It draws upon the social psychology of the voters. According to this approach the voter is the focal point in the electoral process. The Downsian theory studies the voting behavior based on the voter calculations of cost and benefit leading to act of voting. It depends on profile of the citizen, who present stable issues preferences, and reliable information to give alternative policy and have knowledge about the short term and long term results of the election. The Columbian School of Thought studies the election based on the sociological perspective to understand the dynamics of the voters. This perspective deals basically with attitudinal determinations of voters along with the continuum of policy preferences on the left right ideological orientations. Here, the perspectives of religion, sect, ethnicity, class, caste, rural and urban divisions, generations, and genders influence the voter in different degrees and styles. So the political communications approach circulating around the issues of the construction of the electoral choice of the voters behavior (Waseem, 2006, p. 37). In Pakistan, there are numbers of factors influence on voters during election. Pakistan is an Islamic country, majority of people are Muslims. However, the society is divided in different sects. Similarly Pakistani people belong to different ethnic groups and also have rural urban divisions. Besides it, Pakistan electoral politics had been divided in left-right means religious and secular parties. So in the light of above approaches Columbian School of thought is closest approach to study the politics of Pakistan and JI.
After 15 years serving as Amir of the party, Mian Tufail decided to step down because of his deteriorating health. Qazi Hussain Ahmad replaced him as the new Amir of the party in October 1987. He was against the status quo of Pakistan’s political and social structure. Hence, he was not part of bureaucratic and military establishment. That is why, he focused on political, social and economic justice in the country. These efforts of Qazi Hussain Ahmed transformed the party from a social movement into a modern political party. He was openly against the dictatorial rule and was of the opinion that neither the Afghan war and nor the Islamization justified the abrogation of democracy. He affirmed that Islamization measures under the Zia regime paid lip service to Islam and did not Islamized the intuitions of the state. Pakistan’s political dilemma could be solved through restoration of democracy and by ending martial law (White, 2008).
During his student life, he become the member of Islami Jamiat Talaba, where he studied Jamiat literature and devoted rest of his life for the cause of Islam. He became rukan (member) of JI Pakistan in 1970. He was promoted to the post of secretary General of the party in 1978. He was nominated the third Ameer (chief) of the party. He was elected twice time the member of the senate in 1985 and 1992 as well as become the member of national Assembly in 2002. He struggled for many years to bring all the religious factions closer to each other. Ultimately he succeeded in the formation of MMA (Muthida Majlas-e-Amal). After the death of Maulana Shah Ahmed Noorani, he was unanimously elected the president. When sectarian conflicts increased between Shia and Sunni. He shaped National Solidarity Council (Milli Yakjehti Council) which switched off the sectarian violence. He was influential factor in the formation of IJI, the right wing alliance against Pakistan people party, also. Right after assuming the leadership of the party he paid special attention to the circulation of the manifesto of the Party by taking out countrywide processions, extending invitation to study the program of the party. Mass campaign was launched all over the country. As a result nearly 4.5 million of people joined the party. He was inventor of Dharna politics (set in protest) in Pakistan (The Express Tribune, 2010; Usman, 2014, pp. 89-95).
Struggle for Democracy and 1988 Election
Struggle for the restoration of democracy can be traced back to 1981, when MRD (multiparty oppositional coalition) was formally established for the restoration of democracy in Pakistan. The movement firstly appealed to the legacy of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and his populist program, but with the passage of time the movement demanded the end of martial law and the restoration of democracy. The movement compelled the military ruler, when he conducted election on non-party basis in 1985, and then promised that national election will be held in 1988. However, the sudden death of General Zia in a plane crash on 17 august 1988 made possible to held general election. The sudden death of general Zia was a dramatic exit for military establishment. The afghan jihad was in final stage and they did not want any interference from democratic forces. The army prepared a new strategy for exercising political power indirectly, and to counter the Pakistan People party. Thus they re-grouped pro-military political parties and Islamist groups under the banner of Islamic Democratic Alliance for the elections of 1988 and afterwards (Nasr, 1992).
The IDA was formally established in 6 October 1988. The alliance was between Centre Rightist and Islamists such as Muslim League (PML), JI, National People's Party, Jamiat-Ulema-e-Islam (one group), Markazi Jamiat-e-Ahle Hadith (Lakhvi Group), Jamiat-e-Mashaik Pakistan, Azad Group and Hizbullah Jihad and Nizam-e-Mustafa Group. The alliance was dominated by PML. Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi become the president and Professor Ghafoor Ahmad from JI was chosen Secretory General. Later on the alliance was renamed as Islami Jamhori Ittehad and Nawaz Sharif replaced Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi on October 1988. The election manifesto was declared by Mulana Sami Ul Haq. It advocated the supremacy of Islamic Law, provision of equal opportunities for all people, equal justice and less-expensive justice, full pledge support to Afghan Jihad, to promote nuclear technology for peaceful and purpose, to support the Kashmir and Palestine issue, cooperation with non-alignment and encouraging cooperation with third world countries. Soon after announcement the seven point’s agenda, confrontation stared between allies. JI was against the Geneva Accord while a faction of PML (G) supporters believed that signing the accord was a big achievement. Similarly, all the parties were not interested toward Islamization. The JI leadership were confused for long time whether remain with the alliance or not, though at last stage they decided to stay with it (Akhter, 2012, pp. 52-56).
The election campaign was on the basis of national issues, but it was also dominated by two personalities, General Zia and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. The first time political parties used media for election campaign. IJI mainly targeted the Pakistan People party central leaders Benazir Bhutto and Nusrat Bhutto negativity. The election turnout was 42.7 percent, which was very low compare to 1985 election. No one party got the majority seats in election, while Pakistan people party emerged the largest party in the national Assembly with 93 seats. The IJI received 54 seats out of the total seats. MQM got 13 seats in the urban areas of Sindh. The independents become the third force of the parliament. Pakistan people party led by Benazir Bhutto formed the government in the face of an opponent electoral alliance the Islami Jamhuri Ittihad (IJI), and she became the first female prime minister in the history of Pakistan. Pakistan people party form the government in central as well in NWFP and Sindh and IJI took over the ministry of Punjab (Rizvi & Gilani, 2013)
JI got twenty six national and forty four provincial assembly tickets for contesting election. The detail show in the table 1.
Table 01 Election Result of National and Provincial Assemblies of JI 1988
Source: (Nasr, 1994)
The JI had won eight seats of the national Assembly out of twenty six and thirteen seats of provincial Assembly out of forty four, which were given by IJI. The JI had won 26.9 and 25 percent seats of the national and provincial seats it contested respectively. It received 810,312 and 459,165 votes for National and provincial Assembly respectively. MQM won all seats from Karachi, which seriously damage the JI strong base.
Initially, IJI got limited success in 1988 election and was able to continue political pressure on Pakistan people party government. They were defending the populist slogan of Islamization in open platform, on other side, by this way have created difficulties for the current leftist government.
The relation between JI and IJI lead to in critical condition in 1989, when MQM had form alliance with PPP, but suddenly MQM decided to join opposition in the process of no confidence vote. After receiving considerable concession from IJI threw its lot with opposition, promising that it would vote against the government in national Assembly. Besides it, MQM also playing the role of the IJI’s representative in Sindh Assembly. This political development brought the relation between IJI and JI to the brink of collapse. Nawaz Sharif was now looking toward ethnic parties for sustaining his power. In March 1990, IJI had failed to overthrow the PPP government while they encouraged the army to unseat the Benazir Bhutto from Prime Minister Chair. In the same month JI Shura passed a resolution that the party should left the alliance (Nasr, 1994, pp. 162-165).
The IJI started allegation of corruption and mismanagement on the government. They used power full propaganda against Government, so PPP gradually loss the popular support. It was the time, which JI was in wait and watch situation. Finally on 6 august, President Ghulam Ishaq khan dismissed the government charging proliferating corruption and mismanagement and instability in Sindh (Khan, 1992).
When it became confirmed that PPP would not come again in power, the JI decided not to leave the alliance. It was expected that IJI will form the government. Due to the past unfriendly relation with IJI, JI was not welcome back eagerly and was given only eighteen national Assembly and thirty seven provincial tickets. The election campaign was running almost totally by the corps commander General Hamid Gull and his former assistant at the ISI. During the election campaign IJI chief Nawaz Sharif and JI blamed Bhutto of being a security threat for the country, alleging that Benazir Bhutto has revealed the identities of Sikh rebellions and their relations with Pakistani intelligence (Haqqani, 2005).
Manifesto for the election was announced before eleven days of the election. It was similar to the previous election manifesto. However some provisions were included like judicial system according Islamic principles, the criminal and civil case will be finalize with in forty days and one year respectively, the national income will be double in next ten years, to enhance the availability of basic requirements for the rural rapid development and provide basic facilities to the people, creation of million jobs, distribution of gas and electricity and focus on education (Akhter, 2012). 1990 elections were conducted in very polarized atmosphere. Pakistan people party and former prime minister was under pressure due the cases that were filled against her government. On other side, IJI was the major element of the caretaker government and close ally of Ghulam Ishaq Khan. In election of 1990, an alliance of eight political parties Islamic Democratic Alliance and people democratic alliance of four other parties were the major competitors. Pakistan Muslim League, JI and National people’s party along with smaller parties were included in IJI. On other side, Pakistan people party and Tehrik-e Istiqlal were prominent key players in People’s Democratic Alliance (PDA)(Malik, 2012).
Table 02 JI Election Result 1990
The JI had won eight seats of the national Assembly out of eighteen and twenty seats of provincial Assembly out of thirty seven, which were given by IJI. The JI had received 03 percent in the election to the national and 2.6 in the election to the provincial Assembly respectively.
Soon after the election JI did not join the government, because Nawaz Sharif increasingly relied upon ethnic parties such as MQM in Sindh and National Awami party in NWFP. The party was disturbed by close relation of IJI with MQM, which were gradually influenced in Karachi. Nawaz Sharif was Islamic, but he was not in favor of Islamic system. JI openly criticized the government for not showing faithfulness toward Islamization and religious issues. In fact, the collection of IJI becomes the enemy of JI, the Muslim League, Awami national party and specially MQM. Furthermore the tension increased between government and JI on the dramatic changes occurred in international politics. Najeeb Government overthrow by Mujahedeen and gulf war started between Iraq and American and its allies. Government decided to accept settlement on Afghan war at the expense of Mujahedeen. On the other side government supported American allies against Iraq. JI was not in favor of the government stance. In the mid of 1993, constitutional crises started between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan. Finally both were sent to home by Army Chief on July, 1993. The JI remained cooled toward IJI (Nasr S. V., 1994).
The IJI Government could not complete their five years term. It was third elected government that could not compete it tenure since 1985. Care taker government announced the new election, which was scheduled on 6 and 9 October 1993 for the national and provincial Assembly respectively. The previous alliances got dissolved, because the coalition parties either left or lost interest in them. PPP made political arrangement with PML-J under the title of Pakistan Democratic front. PML (N) decided to contest election independently. JUI (F) and JUP (N) agreed to support each other under the banner of Islami Jamhoori Mahaaz. Muttahida Deeni Mahaaz was another alliance which was the collection of 24 right-wing and Islamic political parties led by Mulana Sami UlHaq. JI under the leadership of Qazi Hussain Ahmad, established a new political organization named Pakistan Islamic Front (Rizvi & Gilani, 2013)
During the election, JI declared PPP and PML (N) as equal evil. The party tried to rise as a third force in the election. Qazi Hussain Ahmad has increased enthusiasm in his workers in the election campaign. He wanted to win the election like sudden rise of the Islamic Salvation Front in Algiers in 1991. But it was defeated badly by both parties, even it lost their previous voter bank. JI won only 3 seats in the national assembly and received total 650,000 votes. PPP emerged as the single largest party by winning 86 seats in the national Assembly and formed the government. PML (N) got secured 73 seats become the second largest party of the parliament. JI continued its performance as real opponent of non-Islamic rulers, while seizing power-sharing chances (Mehdi, 2013).
Pakistan Islamic Front was a unique experiment in past. It did not achieve its objective, however it can be modified. According to Professor Khurshid Ahmad (2014) Pakistan Islamic Front was a new experiment in the electoral politics of JI. It was our ( Khurshid & Khuram Murad ) idea and the leading role was played by Qazi Hussain Ahmad. He recognized that the alliance could not achieved its target due to insufficient home work. However, the initiative we had started in 90s, adopted by other Islamic movements in next three decades and now it become a model for change (Usman, p. 82).
Soon after the election, meeting had been called of the central consultative body. JI senior’s leaders were not happy on the bitter experience of Pakistan Islamic Front. So heated debate started among the main decision making body, leading to the resignation of the Amir. Election was held for the new Amir, but Qazi Hussain Ahmad was elected again for the next five years (Bangash, 2009).
After three years ruling of PPP government, JI announced Dharna (sit-in) at front of parliament against Bhutto Government on the basis of corruption. Which thousands of JI workers were expected to march toward capital? The government released the order for the twin-cities police to control the routes in an attempt to stop the march. Despite all-out effort, the JI march reached to Islamabad. The protest was being led by Qazi Hussain Ahmad along with JI senior members and other political parties leaders such Shah Ahmad Noorani (JUP), Shiek Rashid Ahmad and Muhammad Hanif Chudry of PML(N). Qazi Hussain Ahmad delivered speech that they were struggle for the establishment of Islamic system in the state as well as put allegations on the government (Mughal, 1996). The first week of November, President Farooq Ahmad Leghari dismissed the Benazir Bhutto government on charges of corruption, extra judicial killing, mismanagement, and disappointment of law and order (Haqqani, 2005).
Malik Miraj Khalid was appointed the care taker prime minister. He announced the election date to be scheduled on February 3, 1997. The elections for national and provincial Assemblies were held on the same day. The main competitors were PPP and PML (N). Imran khan established a new party on 25 April, 1996 named Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf. There were forty four political parties, who nominated candidates for the general election. PML (N) got a land slide victory over the opponents and secured 136 seats in national Assembly. PPP won only eighteen seats; all from Sindh province. Jamiat-Uelma-e-Islam (F) won only seat. PML (N) formed the government in Centre along with MQM, ANP, and Independents (Syed, 1998).
The JI boycotted the 1997 election, the party leadership was for an across the accountability before the election. JI leadership argued, that article 62 and 63 of the constitution to be implemented, which call for person of honest moral character only be allowed to contest election. Because Pakistan electoral political have been dominated by disqualified politicians (Bangash, 2009). During the election of 1997, PML (N) leadership categorically declared that we will establish good relation with India. In March 1998, Nawaz Sharif invited Indian counterpart in Lahore for the talk to take initiative the process of composite dialogue. Indian prime minister came to Lahore on 20 February 1999. Both prime ministers were agreed that all issues would resolve through dialogue peacefully including Jammu & Kashmir. Qazi Hussain Ahmad declared it a black day stated that government is going to betray with Kashmiris people. JI took out large scale protest against the government in Lahore. Foreign minister Sartaj Aziz had reacted that certain agencies were against the peace process were backing JI agitates (Maggsi). Professor Khurshid was of the opinion that Lahore declaration neither reflects the desire of the Pakistani people, not it is accepted by the nation. This is the agreement of the two prime ministers. Nawaz Sharif has only tried to please India and United States (Ahmad, April, 1999).
After the Lahore declaration, Kargil war started between Pakistan and India in 1999. Kargil conflict and the lack confidence had created tension between civilian government and military establishment, which lead to the dismissal of Nawaz government by Chief of Army staff General Pervez Musharraf. On 12 October 1999, Army chief declared martial law and Nawaz Sharif was sent to Jail (Ahmad N. , 2006).
The military government came in power initially claimed to revamp Pakistan’s politics. He was secular minded general and was inspired by Kamal Ataturk ideas. Musharraf policies were totally different from Zia Islamization policy. After the 9/11 incident, he took U-turn in Pakistan foreign policy related to Afghanistan and Kashmir. He brought new orientation that the military would be committed to geographic strategic vision rather than any ideology. Military government decided to become front line state in the US war against the Taliban government and al-Qaida in Afghanistan. On the other side, Musharraf took further step against Kashmiri militants. The military ruler now became closely allied with the United States and openly created difficulties for the Islamists in Pakistan (Nasr, 2004).
Musharraf decision of front line state against war on terror provided an opportunity to the religious parties, which mobilize the masses against anti-Islamic policies of the government. After the US attacked on Afghanistan, thirty five religious and political parties formed an alliance named Pak-Afghan Defense Council (PADC). Majority of them were the religious parties and groups. The purpose of this platform was to express solidarity with afghan Taliban. The three major religious parties of the alliance, JI, JUI (F), JUI (S), had close relation with Taliban of Afghanistan as well as their chiefs were also from Pashtun belt. The JUI two factions had greatly ideologically influence on Taliban government. Majority of them were educated from Madrassas run by these parties. So these parties strongly condemn the unconditional policy of Musharraf in support of US against war on terror. As a reaction, military government alleged some the major religious organizations for their involvement in terrorist activities. Later on started crackdown against them. In January 2002, military regime banned six organizations alleging them for their involvement in terrorist activities in Pakistan and across the border. So the religious parties strongly condemned the government for banning these organizations at the platform of PADC (Khan K. A., 2011).
Later on, the Anti-Musharraf council lead to the electoral alliance. In May 2002, Muttahidda Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) was formally announced by six religious parties namely JI, JUI (F), JUI (S), JUP (N), Markazi Jamiat Ahle Hadith Pakistan and Islami Tehrik-i-Pakistan. Maulana Shah Ahmad Noorani the chief of JUP (N) was elected the president of Alliance (Mufti, 2009).
The Alliance was the brain child and designed of JI Amir Qazi Hussain Ahmad. He conceived the MMA as means to use tug of war between the Army, the PPP and PML to Islamist parties’ advantage. He believed that the Alliance would provide the opportunity for the Islamists to take control of Islamism from Secular parties or Intuitions such as military or PML. He believed that JI and JUI at have the capabilities to create power full mainstream political force (Nasr V. , 2004, pp. 203-204).
A notification for the election issued by election commission of Pakistan that election would be held for the national and provincial Assemblies on October 10, 2002. A number of amendments were made in the election process. The system of joint electorate was implemented and the minimum age for the voters was reducing to 18 years. General seats were increased to 272. Candidates for the election were required to have bachelor degree or equivalent (Gilani, may, 2013, p. 29).
The Election Commission had issued a form, which did not need the declaring of religion of the voter as there was no such condition under the joint electorate system. Due to the MMA protest, it was incorporated in to the original conduct of general election order. MMA president rejected the constitutional package and demanded that government hold fair and free election. On the other side, MMA maintained anti-US temperament which helped to win the support of the voters. MMA remained successful in collecting the voters, especially in Pashtun belt, because of its anti-US stance and promised for the implementation of Islamic Sharia in Pakistan. The vice-president of MMA, Qazi Hussain Ahmad declared that if MMA would form the government, the house of the president, prime minister, governor and chief minister will turn to educational and health institutions (Khan K. A., 2011).
On 10 September 2002, MMA released their manifesto for the election it proclaimed, to implement Islamic system in Pakistan based on Quran and Sunnah, to protect ideological and geographical boundaries of the Islamic republic of Pakistan, to eliminate linguistic, ethnic and regional hatred and establish a peaceful society based on Muslim brother hood, to promote democratic values and protect Constitution of Pakistan, to have autonomous judiciary and the supremacy of the rule of law, eradicate corruption, provincial autonomy, protection of minorities, remove feudalism, provide rights to women in accordance with Quran and Sunnah, ensure freedom of press and freedom, effort for economic progress(Daily Times, 2002).
Figure 01: Pakistan General Election 2002
Source: (Khan J. , 2014, p. 302)
In the province of NWFP, MMA remarkable victory. It received 66 out of total 124 seats and formed the government. In Baluchistan Assembly, MMA secured 18 seats become the second largest party of the province. It became the coalition partner of the government in Baluchistan. Pakistan Muslim League (Q) emerged as the leading party in National Assembly secured 118 seats. The second biggest party was PPPP with 80 seats third leading party was MMA with 59 seats including reserve seats in the National Assembly (Khan J. , 2014). On 23 November after forty days of the election, Mir Zafar Ullah Khan from PML (Q) become prime minister secured 170 votes out 342. Mulana Fazlu Rehman from MMA became the opposition leader of the house (Talbot, January/February 2003). The MMA campaign was run on the basis of Islamic government. When asked what system he carried for the governance, “Qazi Hussain Ahmad replied one that is run in accordance with the constitution, objective resolution and recommendation of Islamic ideology (Khan K. A., 2011).
Analysts had the opinion that MMA success was engineered by the military ruler to made his importance to Washington, but general Musharraf rejected the notion and was of the opinion that if had to rig the election, than would have done for its party. The rising of MMA was unwelcome phenomenon to US in the context of war in terror. Musharraf tried his best to settle the deal with MMA for the formation of government in Centre, but the deal did not finalize because of conditions put by MMA, Musharraf step-down as Army Chief and the reversal of pro-US policy (Haqqani, 2005). Soon after winning the election, the MMA government in KPK vowed to declare Friday as a holiday in its place of Sunday, do away with coeducation, put a halt on vulgarity in the print and electronic media, and brought reform in interest-based banking system. Although MMA policies were mainly focused on increasing education at primary level and separation of coeducation. Qazi Hussain Ahmad stated on education “we do not want to stop female education but believe in the separation of education because it is un-Islamic. We will establish schools for female because they don’t like coeducation and it is also in consonance with our tradition and culture” (Khan J. , 2014, p. 305). On June 2003, the KPK Assembly approved a Sharia bill related to Education, Culture, economy, Justice System and government. It was similar to the Federal Sharia Act of 1991. It proclaimed that all the courts will follow the jurisdiction of the government and sharia. In July 2005, the provincial government of MMA announced Hasba bill to effectively implement the sharia act. The MMA strongly advocated the bill that it would minimize the miseries of the people and would provide cheap justice. But then it was declared unconstitutional by supreme court of Pakistan on 4 august 2005 (Ibid).
On other side, MMA leadership started campaign against Musharraf on the issue of LFO (Legal framework order). Musharraf regime amalgamated all the amendments to the constitution made by him in the name of LFO without any approval of the newly elected parliament. The election was also held under this Act. The ruling party Pakistan Muslim league (Q) wanted to legalize LFO with the help of opposition party. The MMA supported the ruling party approved LFO in the shape of 17th constitutional Amendment put the condition that curtail the power of Musharraf as chief of Army staff and the president of the country as well. MMA got promise from the dictator to shed his uniform after one year. However, the MMA have been failed in its strategy due to the breakup of the promise by Musharraf in December 2004. The strategy adopted by MMA was highly criticized by the other parties of the parliament (Khan K. A.).
Break-up of MMA and JI Boycott of Election
In 2007, the Alliance became weakened by the increasingly different approaches taken by its two main parties, JI Amir Qazi Hussain Ahmed, an intense critic of the dictatorial regime and JUI head Fazl-ur-Rehman, who largely has supported the Musharraf regime (Kronstadt, January 24, 2008). the two leading parties JI and JUI (F) were already have been different views on the dissolution of KPK assembly and resign from national assembly in protest against president Musharraf attempt in 2007 to remain in power and now they were once again divided over the issue of boycott of next election in 2008 (Jang Newspaper, 2007). The two parties also disagreed on contesting the 2008 national elections. JI leadership were not in favor of election, stated that the elections would be rigged and well aware that its lack of electoral support would reveal its internal weaknesses, the JI Shura decided to boycott from the general election (Report, 2011).
The Transformations of Qazi Hussain Ahmad
Former Amir Qazi Hussain Ahmed has left an imprint on JI current and future politics during his twenty two years at the party’s helm. He can be rightly credited with JI’s existing shape and political philosophy. When he became Amir of JI. The party was faced two main challenges: On one side, the party was to move from a pro-establishment to a more populist politico-religious group, while on the other side the JI was challenging by the new ethnic political force Muttahida Qaumi Movement in Karachi. Despite occasional fiddling with the establishment, the JI managed to gain some popular support. In the meantime, the party compensated for the loss of Karachi by establishing itself in rural KPK (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa). In 1990s, Qazi attracted the youth and poor class of Pakistan. Although it proved to be a difficult task to shed the legacy of supporting the government of Zia regime. Qazi Hussain Ahmad entered the party into the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad, which was later revealed that it was the plane of establishment to keep away Pakistan People’s Party from power. However he was successful to some extent on both counts.
Qazi Hussain Ahmed understood and was aware of the new challenges posed to the traditional politics. He established the Islamic Front and built a new organization with a youth wing named Pasban. The basic aims of Pasban were to promote human rights and to work against the social, political and economic inequalities in the country. Pasban was not worked for a long time due to some internal issue, later on it was replaced by new organization called Shabab-e- Milli for the youth representation. In 1999, under his leadership mass campaign was launched across the country, as a result nearly 4.5 million of people joined the party.
JI was led by an Amir (leader) and comprised of the consultative Assembly and the members of the party. The party members (rukan) was to be virtuous Muslims, with a high moral character even non-members are divided into different groups based on their closeness with party ideology. With a very rigid membership criteria, JI was restricted to the educated people or ulema, it means that common people were not able to join the party (Moten, 2003). Since 1941, the party membership was not open to the public and there was a strict criteria for membership and it was restricted to the educated or to religious scholars (Ulemas). Which meant that more than eighty percent of common people, which was illiterate at the time was unable to be part of the JI workforce. When Qazi Hussain Ahmed became Amir of the party, he changed this approach in 1993 and opened the party to political and social groups due to the widening gap between these groups, which was a great transformation in JI policy. By adopting this policy mean the open door policy, initiated by Qazi Hussain Ahmed for the entire country helped this movement to become a modern political party. It was badly needed to adopt an open door policy for all supporters around the country. After all these efforts the JI adopted to somewhat a new political structure.
During Qazi’s era, JI adopted policies against injustices in the society. The policy of JI initiated by Qazi mostly recruited people from the new urbanized lower classes which dominated the party. Due to this policy shifted the support of JI from urban middle class to lower middle class (Keskin, 2009). Before Qazi Hussain Ahmad, JI influence was limited to young urbanized educated class. His appeal has been observed as more near the Pakistani electorate than towards the rank and file of the party. Qazi Hussain Ahmad generally used keywords in in his speeches such as Feudal, class, masses, liberation. He mainly targeted ruling class, feudal during election campaign. By adopting public tone he attracted the lower middle class (Ahmad Q. H., p. 46).
In 1990s, JI was facing the two powerful political parties and leaders. Nawaz Sharif the leader of Pakistan Muslim League and Benazir Bhutto the leader of Pakistan People Party. Soon after 1990 election JI left the alliance of IJI. In 1993 election, the party went for election with new experience with name of Pakistan Islamic Front. But they were failed to defeat the two powerful parties of that time. Qazi understood the ground reality of Pakistan politics. Whatever the religious parties contesting separate election, they could not compete the secular forces. Due to division of Islamists vote the other political parties would take advantage. According to professor Ibrahim before 1993 election, we met with JUI (F) Amir MulanaFazl u rehamn for alliance, but JUI (F) already made coalition with Pakistan people party (Usman, 2014, p. 117). Finally, Qazi Hussain Ahmad succeeded in his plane in 2002 election. MMA become the 2nd largest party of the parliament. Since 1987, JI for the first time secured five seats in Karachi. The party recovered its old strong to some extent.
During Qazi’s era, JI boycotted the 1997 and 2008 general elections. In 1997 general election, the party leadership demanded the implantation of 62 and 63 articles of the constitution. By this way they wanted to keep away corrupt" elements from entering parliament. Qazi Hussain Ahmad had given justification about election boycott, that it was not an emotional decision, but took the decision after long consultation. We knew, it was beneficial for Islamic movement to boycott form the election rather than participation. Whatever, Islamic movement could be strong through election, must be participate in election. It was harmful for us to take part in the election. We were struggling to bring reforms in the system, so it was not changed. Due to which feudal, industrialists and corrupts people again came into power. These 5 percent people has been destroyed the country since 1947(Ahmad Q. H.). It was a worse decision taken by JI leadership, however it was compensated in 2002 election. Again the boycott of 2008 election was poor decision taken by JI. After a long time the party recovered its vote in Karachi. Due to this decision the electoral field left vacant for other political parties of the country. The ethnic parties which are threating JI in electoral politics such as MQM and ANP were given chances to increase its electoral power in their specific areas. Finally and foremost, the MMA came to an end. According to Samia Rahila Qazi, it was the decision of the Shura (central consultative body) Qazi Hussaindid not agrees with this decision. The ex- Amir Mian Tufail and majority members mainly from Baluchistan and Sindh were against contesting election (Paracha, 2015).
To conclude this, we can say, from 1987 to 2009 the JI started formulating its policies which were against injustices in the society. The policy of JI initiated by Qazi Hussain Ahmed mainly recruited people from the new urbanized lower classes which dominated the party. This policy shifted the support of JI from urban middle class to lower middle. By using and capturing this shifting opportunity structure, JI was able to transform the traditional Islamic politics into more modern social justice-based Islamic politics. After the failure of Pakistan Islamic front, the alliance of MMA was huge victory for JI. In political history JI got maximum seats in the parliament. There were many reasons of the MMA success, first was the anti-America feeling among the people, particularly among the Pashtun belt of NWFP and Baluchistan due to US attack on Afghanistan. The second reason was the Anti-Islam and pro-US policy of Musharraf regime, which anti-Musharraf vote polled for MMA. Third was the decision of the military regime of keeping away Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif from the politics. Fourth reason was corrupt leadership of the major political parties, who disappointed the common people. The alliance of MMA was successful experiment for religious parties including JI. In electoral history, first time JI won numbers of seats along other religious parties. The great electoral victory of MMA was also contributed by above factors, but important factor was the unification of religious parties in one platform.