Leaders Slate Bhutto-Press report on March 16, 1971


The President of National Awami Party, Khan Abdul Wali Khan, stressed here today that a "political solution" must be found to the present impasse. "Let power be transferred to the Constituent Assembly", he said talking to newsmen this morning.


The NAP President, replying to a question on the demand for transfer of power and lifting of Martial Law immediately, said power should be transferred to the Constituent Assembly which should be declared sovereign.


Asked to comment on Mr. Z. A. Bhutto's latest proposal that power should be transferred to the majority parties in East Pakistan and West Pakistan, Khan Wali Khan replied: "We would like to have clarifications whether the concept of a single State is there in his proposal." He said it should be clear that West Pakistan ceased to exist politically since July 1, 1970.


In the absence of fuller details of Mr. Bhutto's speech at Karachi yesterday political observers wondered whether by talking of two Wings as two political entities, Mr. Bhutto was not suggesting something which was 'diametrically opposite to the solidarity and oneness of the country. They also pointed out that Mr. Bhutto could not speak on behalf of West Pakistan as he had no standing in NWFP and Baluchistan. It is interesting that in expounding his "two-majority-party' theory Mr. Bhutto conveniently overlooked the fact that West Pakistan no longer Was one political entity and was split into four provinces, these observers said.


Professor Ghulam Azam, Amir of the Jama'at-i-Islami said that it had been crystal clear from the statement of Mr. Bhutto that he did not want to see Pakistan United.

The Jama'at leader alleged that Mr. Bhutto had engaged himself in " a conspiracy" immediately after the last general elections to divide the nation to fulfil his desire.

He made an appeal to the President "not to help Mr. Bhutto in any way to break Pakistan".


Prof. Azam said that immediate lifting of Martial Law and transfer of power to the elected representatives of the people could only save the nation from crisis.


Maulana Siddique Ahmad, Secretary General of Pakistan Central Jamiat-i­Ulema-i-IslAm and Nizam-i-Islam Party, has demanded that the PPP Chief "be tried for attempting to disintegrate the country by his mischievous activities".


In a Press statement here tonight the Maulana said that Mr. Bhutto had in his latest statement demanded the distribution of power between the majority party of the respective Wings, but it was his dangerous role that had brought the present impasse for the nation.


He said that Mr. Bhutto has "no right to poke his nose in the present critical situation ".

Maulana Siddique said that the only solution to the present crisis was to transfer power to the majority party leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman after accepting his four-point demands, " and for that purpose, President Yahya Khan and Sheikh Mujibur Rahman were the two parties involved". Mr. Bhutto is in no way connected with it, he added.


Dubious Stand


Mr. Mukhlesuzzaman, an ex-MNA and Secretary General of Gono Oaiya Andolon said that Mr. Bhutto had once again exposed himself by his " dubious stand on Bangla Desh. The people of Bangla Desh would not accept him any more ", he added.


He said that Mr. Bhutto had no right to speak for whole of Western Wing having majority in Sind and Punjab only.


(THE DAWN, Karachi-March 16, 1971)



Source: Bangladesh Documents, vol – I, 245-246