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Political parties in Pakistan lists political parties in Pakistan.Pakistan has a multi-party system, with numerous parties in which often no one party has a chance of gaining power alone, and parties must work with each other to form coalition governments.

Parties active in national and provincial politics

Major parties and coalitions

1.Jamaat-e-Islami (JI)This is the oldest party operating in Pakistan even since its beginning. Although the party was formed in 1941 but its role in active politics started soon after independence i.e. 1947. The party was founded by Maulana Syed Abul Ala Maududi, a well known scholar of 20th century and the first personality to win the highest award of Muslim World, "King Faisal Award" for services in Islam. Although the party has not participated in recent general election but has a strong following especially in the religious groups around the country. The party is termed most democratic for holding elections of party's president every five years. The party has never sworn in as full government but has ruled one of four provinces North-West Frontier Provincemarker as a coalition after the elections of 2002. The party is led by Syed Munawar Hasan. The party has major links with Islamic parties in Turkey, Malaysia, Egypt, Sudan, India and Bangladesh.

The Jamat-e-Islaami has 9 seats in the Senate [49070] and none in the National Assembly. [49071] after the decision not to stand in February 2008 general elections.

2.Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPPP), the parliamentary wing of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) was founded in 1967, on November 30 by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who became its first chairman and later Prime Minister of Pakistan. Pakistan Peoples Party is the largest political party of Pakistanmarker. This party has been active in Pakistani Politics after the separation of East Wing from the rest of Pakistan. The party gained much popularity and support from masses in era of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. The party won the 1971 elections on socialist mandate of "Roti, Kapra, Makan" (bread, clothes, shelter). PPP took control of the country after the Indian supported Civil War of 1971. After the first parliamentary term, PPP secured a landslide victory in 1977 elections to rule for further five years.

Opposition parties claimed that the election was heavily rigged by PPP. Tensions mounted and despite the agreement was reached between opposition and PPP, martial law was imposed in the country by Gen. Zia ul Haq. Bhutto was hanged in 1977 after a very controversial trial in which he was found guilty of murder of a political opponent. His daughter Benazir Bhutto was elected twice as the prime minister but her government was dismissed both times on corruption charges, none of them proven in the court despite many years of proceedings.

PPP (was a socialist nationalist party when formed by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, but moved toward the right under Benazir Bhutto. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto wanted closer ties with China and more attention to the lower classes. Benazir Bhutto adopted conservative privatization policies in order to secure funding from the United States and the World Bank. Although twice elected Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto was criticized for corruptions and extra-judicial killings.

The PPP currently holds 126 seats in the national assembly [49072] and 27 seats in the senate [49073]. It is the current government of Pakistan. It forms the provincial government in Sindh is the official opposition in Punjab. In the Angus-Reid pre-election polls of 22-December-2007, it was in first place, with about 30% of the vote. It is strong in the rural areas of Sindh and Punjab.

3. Pakistan Muslim League (PML "Nawaz group")is a centrist conservative party that has been led from Saudi Arabia by Nawaz Sharif. It currently holds 90 seats in the national assembly [49074] and 7 seats in the senate [49075]. Although twice elected as Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif was criticized for wide-spread corruption and extra-judicial killings. In the Angus-Reid pre-election polls of 22-December, the PML/N was in second place, with about 25% of the vote. It is strong in Punjab province.

4. Pakistan Muslim League (PML "Quaid-i-Azam group"), the party supporting past president, Pervez Musharraf), and officially called Pakistan Muslim League. PML (Q) is a centrist conservative party that forms the opposition. It currently holds 53 seats in the national assembly [49076] and 21 seats in the senate.[49077]. The PML (Q) formed from the split of the PML N following the arrest and exile of PML leader and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The PML(Q) absorbed some minor parties through power-sharing agreements in 2002 general elections becoming the government of pakistan. In 2008 general elections the party lost seats and was no longer the government of Pakistan.

Although initially popular, Musharraf has been criticized for supporting the US invasion of Afghanistan and suspension of legal rights. In the Angus-Reid pre-election polls of 22-December-2007, the PML(Q) was in third place, with about 23% of the vote. It is strong in urban areas of the two large provinces (Punjab and Sindh).

5. Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), previously known as Mohajir Qaumi Movement. The party was formed firstly as student's organization in University of Karachimarker as the All Pakistan Muhajir Student Organization (APMSO) in 11 June 1978. This student organization was founded when the thousands of Mohajir students (Urdu-speaking immigrants from India after partition) were deprived of their rights and jobs in both private & government organizations. The students were faced with harsh quotas introduced by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto which deprived Mohajir students of their seats in Universities and higher educational institutions. That led to the formation of the Mohajir Qaumi Movement in 1984. The name was changed to Muttahida Qaumi Movement in 1997 in order to fight for the rights of 98% oppressed people in Pakistan. Altaf Hussain is the head of this political organization. MQM currently holds 25 seats in the national assembly [49078]and 6 seats in the senate [49079]. It is the official opposition in Sindh province. In the Angus Reid poll of 22-December, the MQM was in sixth place, with 2% of the vote

6. Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, a coalition of six religious parties consisting of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (F) (Assembly of Islamic Clergy, Fazl-ur-Rahman Group), Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (S) (Assembly of Islamic Clergy, Sami-ul-Haq Group) Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan (Assembly of Pakistani Clergy), Tehrik-e-Jafaria Pakistan, Jamiat Ahle Hadith and a few more. The religious alliance forms the government in North-West Frontier Provincemarker. It leads the coalition government in Balochistanmarker with PML Quaid-e-Azam. This group has broken up with JUI-F, which left to be a part of coalition ppp government and take part in 2008 general elections [49080].

MMA is de-centrist. It is strong in the two small provinces. It is legally ultra-conservative and economically socialist. It strongly opposes US military presence in Pakistan. In the Angus-Reid pre-election polls of 22-December, the MMA was in fifth place, with 4% of the vote.

The MMA in national assembly is actually JUI-F part who decided to use the name MMA at the general election in 2008 after the remaining parties in the MMA decided to not take part in the general election [49081]. It currently holds 7 seats in the national assembly [49082] and 4 seats in the senate [49083].

The MMA that contested the 2002 general election has disbanded according to head of Jamaat-e-Islaami [49084]

7. Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP(S)), is a left wing socialist party that was formed after Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao the Senior Vice Chairman and senior vetern NWFP politician of the PPP was expelled from the party by the late Chairperson Benazir Bhutto. Differences had cropped up between Benazir and Sherpao after the dismissal of the PPP government in 1996, which some say was the result of close aides of Benazir warning her of Sherpao's political strength within the party which could in the future become a threat to her leadership. Sherpao till date maintains that he never did nor intended to challenge the leadership of Benazir.

PPP (Sherpao) was formerly founded months before the 2002 General Elections, making it the youngest party with a reecognizable vote bank in Pakistan. The party aims to follow the socialist ideas of PPP's first Chairman Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and founding member Hayat Muhammad Khan Sherpao. Since the party's inception it has been heavily influenced by its Chairman Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao and the political thought Hayat Sherpao which focuses on nationalism, provincial autonomy and rights of the Provinces. It's manifesto states its objectives as Provincial Autonomy, Strengthening Democratic Institutions and the Promotion of Democracy, the Supremacy of Islam, Economic Growth, Quality Education and Health, Social Stability and Development in Rural Areas. PPP (Sherpao) is mostly based in the North West Frontier Province where it has a diverse political base with representation and support in almost every district of the province. PPP(S) also has support in Karachi with recent signs of growth being shown. The party has not yet, however, turned that support into substantial electoral success in the previous two elections. After the 2002 elections, the PPP(S) emerged as the second largest party in the NWFP Provincial Assembly (ahead of PPP, PML(N), PML(Q) and the ANP) after the MMA, although it had only 12 seats. PPP (S) has only 1 seat in the National Assembly after 2008 general elections and 1 seat in the Senate [49085].

8. Awami National Party (ANP) has 13 seats in the national assembly[49086] and 6 Senate seats [49087]. The NWFP province government is run by the ANP.

9.JEAY SINDH [JASQM] [JSSF] it is the party of sindh the chair man of the party is mr bashir ahmed qureshi this party was made by SAIN G.M Syed.

Minor Political Parties

Parties in Parliament

  • Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians, PPPP – 120
  • Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), PML (N) – 90
  • Pakistan Muslim League (Quaid-i-Azam), PML (Q) – 51 (The original Muslim League)
  • Muttahida Qaumi Movement, MQM – 25 priviously known as (Mohajir Qaumi Movement)
  • Awami National Party, ANP – 13
  • Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, MMA – 6
  • Pakistan Muslim League (Functional) – 5
  • Pakistan Peoples Party (Sherpao) – 1
  • Mohajir Qaumi Movement – 1 de facto group of (Muttahida Qaumi Movement)
  • Balochistan National Party (Awami) – 1
  • Independent candidates – 19
  • Mohajir Qaumi Movement - 1

The Parliament of Pakistan is bicameral, consisting of the National Assembly of Pakistan and the Senate. National Assembly elections were last held on 18 February 2008.

Composition of Parliament

Senate after February 2008 elections
Party Seats
National Assembly elections, October 2008
Party Seats
PPPP 120 Ruling party on base of simple majority
PML(N) 90 (Previously part of coalition Government)
PML(Q) 51
MQM 25 (Part of coalition Government)
ANP 13
MQM 26

External links

See also

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