Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry, born on January 1, 1904, in Gujrat, Punjab, British India (now in Pakistan), was a Pakistani politician who served as the fifth President of Pakistan from 1973 to 1978. Here is a brief biography of Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry:
Early Life and Education:
- Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry was born into a Rajput family. He received his early education in Gujrat and later attended Punjab University Law College in Lahore, Pakistan.
- Chaudhry practiced law and became a prominent lawyer in the region, specializing in constitutional and criminal law.
- Chaudhry actively participated in the Pakistan Movement and was a supporter of the All India Muslim League, a political party advocating for the creation of Pakistan.
- After the creation of Pakistan in 1947, Chaudhry became involved in politics and held various positions within the Muslim League and its successor, the Pakistan Muslim League (PML).
- He served as a member of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan and played a role in the formulation of the country’s first constitution.
- In 1973, after the adoption of a new constitution, Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry was elected as the President of Pakistan. He succeeded Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in this position.
- Chaudhry’s presidency was largely ceremonial, as the real power rested with the Prime Minister and the Parliament. However, he did exercise some influence and represented Pakistan in international forums.
- During his presidency, Chaudhry faced various political challenges, including the growing opposition to the government of Prime Minister Bhutto and rising unrest in different parts of the country.
End of Presidency and Later Years:
- In July 1977, General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq staged a military coup and overthrew the government of Prime Minister Bhutto. Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry’s presidency came to an end.
- After his term as President, Chaudhry largely withdrew from active politics and remained out of the public spotlight.
- Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry passed away on June 2, 1982, in Lahore, Pakistan.
Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry’s presidency was a relatively short period in Pakistan’s political history. While he held the highest office in the country, his role was limited in comparison to that of the Prime Minister. His presidency coincided with a turbulent time in Pakistan’s politics, with significant events such as the removal of Bhutto’s government and the subsequent military rule of General Zia-ul-Haq.