Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Death of a president like President

I read the news of death of Sardar Farooq Ahmed Khan Leghari, the former president of Pakistan with a heavy heart. I never had any political affiliations with the person of the man, but I liked him because of his towering personality, honesty and character. At least he looked like a president, much like Ayub Khan and perhaps Charles De Gaulle.

He spoke softly, unlike the conventional political presidents and carried himself with grace and dignity. He held the office of the president as long as he was respected and didn’t budge from his view point. Hailing from a respectable Leghari tribe of the Dera Ghazi Khan, the young Sardar Leghari graduated with honours from the Forman Christian College, Lahore, where again he was amongst the best students, and later from College Oxford University. After returning to Pakistan he joined the Civil Service but soon after the death of his father he resigned from service and came back to his roots to look after the tribal affairs of his tribe. He later joined Pakistan Peoples’ Party and has been de facto leader of the party during imprisonment of Z A Bhutto.

In 1993, he became the president and had the guts to dismiss the government of Benazir Bhutto on charges of corruption, extra judicial killings and lawlessness. In the following government of Nawaz Sharif, when Mr Sharif tried to grab all the powers under him and become a civilian dictator, Sardar Leghari tried to sort out the affairs with consultation with the then Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah. Nawaz stormed the Supreme Court building with his political workers and sacked the Chief justice. Seeing the mood of the time, Leghari resigned. It is very strange that Nawaz has the audacity to storm the Supreme Court as the chief justice was a threat to him, but he sided with the present chief justice as his ouster ousted the chief justice and him too. How people behave under trying times.

He later formed his own political party by the name of Millat Party. Later he also joined the Muslim League (Q). Lately he hasn’t been well on account of his heart-related diseases and was admitted in the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology (AFIC) at Rawalpindi, where he breathed his last on October 20, 2010.

With him gone, Pakistan has lost an upright, intellectual and an honest ex president. May his soul rest in peace. Ameen.


Jalal, Thanks for the info. Surprisingly I didnot follow the news of his death on the media. Is PPP & Muslim League coalition blocking? I 100% agree with you. To my mind he should be given state funeral. Lets' join me in pray that ALLAH grant him Jannah. AAMEEN
Zaffar Iqbal Durrani

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