Liaquat Ali Khan PDF Print Email
Written by   

Liaquat Ali Khan (Liāqat Alī Khān) (1 October 1896 – 16 October 1951) was a Pakistani politician who became the first Prime Minister of Pakistan, Foreign Affairs & Commonwealth, Kashmir Affairs and Defence Minister. He was also the first Finance Minister of India in the interim government of India prior to independence of both India and Pakistan in 1946.  Liaquat rose to political prominence as a member of the All India Muslim League. He played a vital role in the independence of India and Pakistan. In 1947, he became the prime minister of Pakistan. He is regarded as the right-hand man of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the leader of the Muslim League and first governor-general of Pakistan. Liaquat was given the titles of Quaid-e-Millat (Leader of the Nation), and posthumously Shaheed-e-Millat (Martyr of the Nation).

Liaquat was a graduate of Aligarh Muslim University, Oxford University and Middle Temple, London. He rose into prominence within the Muslim League during the 1930s. Significantly, he is credited with persuading Jinnah to return to India, an event which marked the beginning of the Muslim League's ascendancy and paved the way for the Pakistan movement. Following the passage of the Pakistan Resolution in 1940, Liaquat assisted Jinnah in campaigning for the creation of a separate state for Indian Muslims. In 1947, British Raj was divided into the modern-day states of India and Pakistan.

Following independence, India and Pakistan came into conflict over the fate of Kashmir. Khan negotiated extensively with India's then Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, and pushed for the referral of the problem to the United Nations. During his tenure, Pakistan pursued close ties with the United Kingdom and the United States. The aftermath of Pakistan's independence also saw internal political unrest and even a foiled military coup against his government. After Jinnah's death, Khan assumed a more influential role in the government and passed the Objectives Resolution, a precursor to the Constitution of Pakistan. He was assassinated in 1951.