Benazir Bhutto

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Bhutto, Benazir

(bĕn'əzĭr` bo͞o`tō), 1953–2007, prime minister of Pakistan (1988–90; 1993–96), daughter of Zulfikar Ali BhuttoBhutto, Zulfikar Ali
, 1928–79, Pakistani political leader. Member of a wealthy landowning family, he entered politics as the protégé of General Ayub Khan. Bhutto joined the cabinet in 1958, becoming foreign minister in 1963.
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. Educated at Radcliffe and Oxford, she returned to Pakistan shortly before her father was overthrown by General Zia ul-HaqZia ul-Haq, Mohammad,
1924–88, Pakistani military and political leader. Named general and chief of staff by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in 1976, he declared martial law in July, 1977, in response to agitations against election fraud.
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 in 1977. Under detention and then in exile, she returned in 1986 to lead the Pakistan People's party (PPP) and to fight military rule. In Nov., 1988, three months after President Zia ul-Haq died in a plane crash, Bhutto's alliance gained a narrow majority in parliamentary elections, and she became prime minister, the first female leader of a Muslim nation. Her government, marked by continuous intrigue and able to accomplish little, was dismissed by President Gulam Ishaq Khan in Aug., 1990. He accused her, her husband, Asif Ali ZardariZardari, Asif Ali
, 1955–, Pakistani politician, president of Pakistan (2008–13), b. Nawabshah. From a wealthy, prominent family, he studied at St. Patrick's College in Pakistan and the London School of Business Studies in England.
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, and her party of corruption. Zardari was held (1990–93) on various charges, although eventually acquitted, and the PPP lost the late 1990 elections.

In 1993, Bhutto again became prime minister. By then a more seasoned politician, she made alliances, including with the military, that enabled her to deal with some of Pakistan's deep-seated problems. In Nov., 1996, though, her government was again dismissed. Zardari was accused of murdering Bhutto's brother, a political rival, as well as of accepting kickbacks, and was imprisoned; sweeping corruption charges were brought against Bhutto. In 1999, Bhutto and Zardari were both convicted of corruption; Bhutto appealed the verdict while living in exile in England and the United Arab Emirates.

In 2001 the Pakistani supreme court set aside the corruption charges facing Bhutto and Zardari and ordered their retrial, but a Swiss court convicted the couple of money laundering in 2003. Bhutto was barred from running in the 2002 Pakistani parliamentary elections. Zardari was released from prison in 2004, a move that appeared designed to improve the Musharraf government's relations with the PPP; he subsequently left Pakistan.

In Oct., 2007, after extended negotiations with the government, Bhutto returned to Pakistan, intending to run for prime minister in the scheduled Jan., 2008 elections. On her return, she survived an attempt on her life that killed more than 130 persons, but was assassinated two months later in an attack, widely ascribed to Islamic militants, that followed a political rally in Rawalpindi. (A UN report, released in 2010, said Pakistani intelligence agencies had hampered the investigation into her murder.) Her son, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, 1988–, assisted by her husband, succeeded her as PPP leader.


See her autobiography, Daughter of Destiny (1989, repr. 2008) and her Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy, and the West (2008).

References in periodicals archive ?
LARKANA -- Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah along with Sindh cabinet members on the eve of 60th birthday anniversary of slain former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, offered Fateha and laid floral wreath on her Mazar at Garhi Khuda Bux Bhutto.
Khan and Taj Haider appreciated the efforts of establishing this chair and said that it is pertinent to research and redefine the political and democratic philosophy of Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto because academia can not be separated from democracy.
According to the Siegel statement, Musharraf had warned Benazir Bhutto that she would be responsible for her own security if she returned before the elections-2008.
On this day "let us also re-dedicate ourselves to uphold the ideals of democracy and egalitarianism for which Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto stood for and even laid down her life," he emphasised.
The chair would conduct lecture series, conferences, seminars on Shaheed Mohatarma Benazir Bhutto and publish a literary Journal.
Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Shaheed envisaged a Pakistan which was a democratic, plural and egalitarian society and free from all sorts of exploitation, said the Prime Minister.
She stated that under the vision of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, 10 percent quota was fixed for women in government employment and with that, the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) was also another precedent to protect and empower women economically.
PPP Women Wing Punjab President Belum Hasnain said that Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto was a towering personality of international stature and had served twice as the prime minister of the country.
She said due to prudent policies and political vision, sagacity of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto, the disciples of a dictator having ambitions to complete his mission earlier, now compelled to visit the grave of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto and admitting her vision.
KARACHI, December 28, 2011 (Balochistan Times): Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), chief Altaf Hussain on Tuesday said that Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto was a great leader who had always raised voice for protection of rights of poor people.
RAWALPINDI, September 11, 2011 (Frontier Star): US Journalist Mark Segal has become prosecution's witness in Benazir Bhutto murder case.
In a statement issued here, the PPP Harnai leaders while addressing a ceremony held at PPP Harnai Secretariat in connection with death anniversary of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto said the nation could not forget Shaheed Benazir Bhutto as she had run a long struggle for restoration of democracy.