The President of the country is the ceremonial head of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. On March 23rd, 1956, the president’s office was created upon the proclamation of the Islamic Republic. From 14 August 1947, when Pakistan came into being, to the present year of 2022, many presidents exchanged seats. Some of them compiled and edited their presidential period, while some didn’t. In this article, we will talk about all the previous and present presidents of Pakistan.
How is the president elected in Pakistan?
In the special session of parliament, the president is elected. Indirectly, the president is elected by the Electoral College for five years. The president must be Muslim and ages about 45 years. In the state, of Islamabad, the president resides known as Aiwan e Saddar.
List of Pakistan’s presidents
1. Iskandar Mirza
Iskandar Mirza served as the last governor-general of Pakistan and became the first president of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan after the 1956 constitution. In 1958, he was deposed by General Ayyub Khan, who was appointed as the chief martial law administrator in 1957.
2. Muhammad Ayyub Khan
Ayyub Khan was born in Rehana, North West frontier province on 14 May 1907. He died in 1974 on 14 April near Islamabad Pakistan. He remained the president of Pakistan from 1958 to 1963. In the modern development of his nation, his rule marked a critical period.
He studied at Aligarh Muslim University in India. In the Indian army, he was commissioned officer after the British India partition in 1947, he was promoted to the army of a newly developed country, Pakistan. He was a major general and then became commander in chief. He had also been minister of defense for a short period.
3. Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan
Yahya Khan was born on 4 February 1917 in the part of India which is now Peshawar Pakistan. He died in Rawalpindi on 10 August 1980. He remained the president of Pakistan from 1969 to 1971. Yahya Khan was a professional soldier who then became commander in chief in 1966 of the armed forces of Pakistan. Yahya khan belonged to the elite soldier family of Nader Shah. Nader Shah was the one who conquered Delhi in the 18th century, he was a Persian. He got his education from Punjab University. Later he graduated first in his class from the Indian Military Academy. He served in the Middle East and Italy during World War 2 and at the time of the subcontinental partition.
4. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto
After the Indian war of 1971, Pakistan faced many crises till the time of independence. The dismembered country Pakistan was only left with four provinces. Each provincial Pakistan was declared independent at this time. Pakistan lost the whole province of 70 million 56 percent of the complete population. In an area of about 54501 sq. in India and Bangladesh, there were 93,000 prisoners of war.
President Yahya Khan tried his best to impose law and order but the patience of the people had been exhausted by that time. The military leadership was discredited. People could not tolerate misgovernment anymore. All of the public blamed Yahya Khan to be an irresponsible president.
Facing such difficulties, Yahya khan handed over the power to Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto who was the chairman of the Pakistan People’s Party. On 6 December 1971, on the request of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, a civilian setup was installed at the center and a Bengal politician Noor Ul Amin was made prime minister and ZA Bhutto was declared as deputy prime minister. Till 20 December 1971, Noor Ul Amin remained prime minister. After the 1973 constitution, ZA Bhutto was elected prime minister of Pakistan by the house. He was the 4th president of Pakistan.
5. Fazal Elahi Chaudhry
He remained the president of Pakistan from 14 August 1973 to 16 September 1978. Fazal Elahi was born in the Punjab district on 1 January 1904. He got his early education from his hometown. Then he went to Aligarh University. After that, he joined Punjab University and took a degree in law from there. In 1925, he did his M.A in political science, and in 1927 took his law degree from Punjab University. He went back to Gujrat to practice law.
6. General Zia Ul Haq
Muhammad Zia Ul Haq was born in Jalandhar on 12, 1924. He died on 17 August 1988 at Bahawalpur. He was the chief martial law administrator. His period of the presidency was from 1978 to 1988.
He was commissioned from the Indian royal military academy. And served with the Britishers in Southeast Asia in World War 2. He spent many years in staff and commandos.
7. Ghulam Ishaq Khan
The one who can be said as the most powerful equation of presidents and politicians was Ghulam Ishaq Khan. Ishaq Khan was a senior bureaucrat who turned into a politician. He had been a figure in Pakistani politics for more than three decades. He was born in the North West Frontier province in 1915. He got appointed to the civil services of Pakistan. After the independence of 1947. He was then appointed to several positions in the government. First, he had been the secretary minister of finance and later got appointed as the governor of the state bank of Pakistan. He questioned many policies of Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. He was removed from being governor of the band and was given the defense ministry. At the time g martial law, Ishaq khan was blamed for many economical decisions. However, he still supported the government of Zia Ul Haq.
Ishaq khan was elected as a senator in 1985 and later became the senate’s chairman. The death of Zia Ul Haq in 1988 brought Ishaq khan to the idle political stage. When it was decided by the military to handle the constitution for succession issues, Ishaq Khan became the acting president of the country. T was then decided o arrange elections and all the political parties must participate in the elections. The country was then guided back to democracy. Benazir Bhutto was elected as the prime minister and Ishaq Khan became the president of Pakistan.
8. Sardar Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari
Sardar Farooq Khan was born on 29 May 1940 at D.G Khan. He was from a family which had been active in politics. His grandfather Nawab Jamal khan Leghari and father Nawab Muhammad Khan Leghari introduced their tribe to modern ideas. His father was a prominent figure in the independence movement. His father was the minister in Punjab Government from 1949 to 1955.
Farooq Khan completed his graduation from Aitchison College Lahore. He joined the civil service of Pakistan in 1963 and work in several fields from 1964 to 1973. In 1973 he left the civil service because Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto invited him to join the P.P.P party. In the elections of 1977, Farooq Leghari was elected senator. He was elected secretary general of P.P.P in 1978. His period as secretary general was till 1983. In 1988, he was elected a member of the Punjab assembly and national assembly. He was the re-elected member of the 1990 elections and became deputy leader of the opposition assembly.
In the general elections of 1993, he won the seat of the national assembly and was appointed as the foreign minister of Pakistan. On 13 November 1993, he was elected as the president of Pakistan.
9. Muhammad Rafiq Tarar
Muhammad Rafiq Tarar was the former judge of the Supreme Court and was later elected as the 9th president of Pakistan. He took oath on 1st January 1998.
Due to a significant constitutional crisis that the nation was experiencing in December 1997, the office of president had become vacant. This crisis ended up with the resignation of ex-president Farooq Leghari on 2 December 19997.
10. General Parveez Musharraf
Former military director of Pakistan, general Parveez Musharraf born on 11 August 1943 became the 10th president of Pakistan when a successful takeover of the military took place in 1999.
11. Asif Ali Zardari
Zardari decided to compete in the presidential election against the candidate of PMLN when Musharraf was forced to resign. Zardari won the majority votes of 481 out of 702. And that is how he became the eleventh president of Pakistan. He took oath on 9th September 2008. Hamid Karzai, an Afghani president of the time was invited as a special guest to the oath ceremony.
Zardari went to New York for attending the annual session of the UN national Assembly. Zardari put the photo of his wife Benazir Bhutto on the dais. He always used to put her picture on the dais in his presidential period before starting his speech. The message he wanted to deliver through her photograph as that she was the real power and he is only the acting president in her absence.
12. Syed Mamnoon Hussain
Mamnoon Hussain was born in Agra in 1940 and migrated to Pakistan with his parents in1947. He served as the 12th president of Pakistan between 2013 to 2018.
Mamnoon Hussain passed away on 14 July 2021 after a long period of illness. His age was 80 years according to his family and his party leaders as well. He was a prominent figure in the political world.
13. Doctor Arif Alvi
Dr. Arif Alvi was elected as the 13th president of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in 2018. He was born in 1949. He got his early education in Karachi. He did his BDS at De Montmorency College of dentistry.