Benazir Bhutto

Benazir Bhutto was born in June 21, 1953, in Karachi, Pakistan. She married in December, 1987 to Asif Ali Zardari. She has three childern, Bilawal, Bakhtwar and Aseefa. After completing her early education in Pakistan, she attended Radcliffe College and Oxford University. As well as obtaining a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics, she also completed a course in International Law and Diplomacy at Oxford.

She started her Political activities with the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP). From 1977 to 1984, she repeatedly imprisoned and kept under house arrest by the marshal law government, She returned to Pakistan in April, 1986 after political exile in London, England, 1984-86. It was actually the huge welcome for Benazir Bhutto on 10th of April 1986 which had really sealed General Zia's fate. The masses rallied around the banner of the PPP and more than 10 million thronged the streets and squares of Pakistan to welcome Ms Bhutto, chanting the slogan 'Benazir has come - she has brought the revolution'.

PPP was a victorious party in Election 88',as a result On December 2, 1988 Benazir Bhutto was sworn in as Prime Minister of Pakistan, becoming the first woman to head the government of an Islamic State. But her government was illegally dismissed in August 1990. She was re-elected in the elections held in October 1993.

Benazir Bhutto, the first woman ever to lead a modern Islamic nation, did not plan to be a politician. She became active in politics after her father's death. Having sworn to carry her father's political flame, Benazir Bhutto leading her Pakistan Peoples Party to victory in the November 1988 and October 1993 parliamentary elections. As Prime Minister, Bhutto has been praised for moving swiftly to restore civil liberties and political freedom, suspended under military rule. During her terms of office, she has faced enormous challenges in governing a poor, politically fractious, and ethnically diverse nation.

Benazir Bhutto went on to study political science and philosophy at Radcliffe College and Oxford University. She excelled academically and planned to work with her father's government as a professional diplomat upon her return to Pakistan in June 1977. Only two weeks later, however, military officers led by General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq imposed marshal law and overthrew Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in a bloodless coup. Benazir Bhutto spent the next eighteen months in and out of house arrest as she struggled to rally political support to force Zia to drop fallacious murder charges against her father. The military dictator ignored worldwide appeals for clemency and had Zulfikar Bhutto hanged in April of 1979.

Benazir Bhutto's persecution began in earnest after the dismissal of her father's government in 1977 and his execution in 1979 as she intensified her denunciations of Zia and sought to organize a political movement against him. Repeatedly put under house arrest, she was finally imprisoned under solitary confinement in a desert cell in Sindh province during the summer of 1981. Bhutto described the hellish conditions in her wall less cage in "Daughter of Destiny"
"The summer heat turned my cell into an oven. My skin split and peeled, coming off my hands in sheets. Boils erupted on my face. My hair, which had always been thick, began to come out by the handful. Insects crept into the cell like invading armies. Grasshoppers, mosquitoes, stinging flies, bees and bugs came up through the cracks in the floor and through the open bars from the courtyard. Big black ants, cockroaches, seething clumps of little red ants and spiders. I tried pulling the sheet over my head at night to hide from their bites, pushing it back when it got too hot to breathe."

Benazir Bhutto was finally allowed to travel to England in 1984 to receive treatment for a serious ear infection, and she remained in exile there until after Zia lifted Martial Law in December of 1985. In 1986, When she returned to Pakistan, A huge crowd numbering in the hundreds of thousands turned out on the streets to greet her. After her arrival Benazir Bhutto lost no time in organizing mass protests and civil disobedience campaigns to pressure Zia to relinquish office and call national elections.

After General Zia's death in a plane crash in August of 1988, election was held, Benazir Bhutto formed a new government. Benazir Bhutto quickly release Zia's political prisoners and guaranteed basic civil and political freedom. Addressing a historic US Joint Session of Congress during her state visit to the United States in 1989, Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto called for the establishment of an Association of New Democratic Nations.

On August 6, 1990 after having been in office less than half of her tenure, President Ghulam Ishaque Khan dismissed her government unilaterally and called for fresh elections.In July 1993, the President of Pakistan dismissed the Government of Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif on corruption charges and called for fresh elections. PPP again came as a victorious party in the elections of 1993 and Ms Bhutto again elected as a prime minister of Pakistan.

She has been mentioned as "The world's most popular politician" in the New Guinness Book of Record 1996.Ms. Bhutto is the author of "Foreign Policy in Perspective" (1978) and her autobiography, "Daughter of Destiny" (1989). She received the Bruno Kreisky Award for Human Rights in 1988 and the Honorary Phi Beta Kappa Award from Radcliffe in 1989.

On 27 December 2007, Benazir Bhutto was killed while leaving a campaign rally for the PPP at Liaquat National Bagh in the run-up to the January 2008 parliamentary elections.

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