General Zia ul Haq seized power in a coup by ousting Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who was prime Minister in 1978. The sad part is the Bhutto had himself selected General Zia as the Army Chief, superseding 5 senior generals. One wonders how Bhutto could be so poor a judge of men. Bhutto had his faults but the fatal one was a belief in his own omnipotence and hence his choice of Zia as the army chief who would be his protégé and grateful to him went awry. Bhutto was overthrown and imprisoned.
Zia had hatched a diabolical plot to eliminate Bhutto whom he greatly feared. So he dug up some files and brought forward a charge of murder against Bhutto. The charge was that Bhutto had engineered the murder of the father of a political opponent. Bhutto was tried for murder and pliant judiciary sentenced Bhutto to death by hanging.
The bane of Pakistan is that Judiciary right from 1954 has been a tool of the military. Why? One cannot fathom an answer, but it was perhaps an outcome of fear and a desire to ingratiate themselves with the military rulers. Bhutto was duly hanged on flimsy evidence and general Zia turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to all the requests of the world leaders. I wonder how Pakistanis can feel proud of men like General Zia.
The wheels of destiny however turn differently. In 1988 the General in his pompous manner boarded a transport plane in the company of the US ambassador and some crony generals. The plane was sabotaged and a nerve gas exploded in the pilot’s cockpit, rendering the crew unconscious and the plane crashed killing General Zia. Those who ride the tiger are eaten by the tiger and thus Zia met his fate and death as destined.
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