It was on 24th September last year that we held a convention of our party at Hyderabad where I made a policy statement on the aims and aspirations of the Pakistan People's Party. In that speech I pledged to the people of Pakistan that we shall fight to the bitter end to destroy dictatorship in this country. In that speech I gave a warning to President Ayub Khan and told him that his days were numbered because although he had the Basic Democrats, the officials, the police, the armed forces, the capitalists the industrialists, the landlords, the sycophants, the opportunists, the controlled national press, yet a final push by the people of Pakistan will throw him out. The people of Pakistan gave him that final kick and in six months the dictator collapsed before the wrath and power of the people.
Pakistan will never again see a dictator like Ayub Khan just as Germany will not see another Hitler and Italy will not see another Mussolini. It is wrong to say that we have completed the full cycle. Some people say, well Ayub Khan has gone; one Khan has gone, another Khan has come; one dictator has gone, another dictator has come: one Martial Law has gone, another Martial Law has come. This is not correct. History shows that nations do not go back. They move forward. They progress all the time. It is always a march forward. It is not correct to say that we stand in the same place and that there is no movement towards the betterment of the people. No struggle can go waste. The people's sacrifices can never go waste. This is the rule of history. Do not think that your sacrifices have been in vain and that you have to feel despair because the struggle you launched against dictatorship shows that the people of Pakistan will not tolerate dictatorship forever, that the people of Pakistan are willing to fight for their rights, that the people of Pakistan are willing to make sacrifices for their rights and their struggle will continue until they attain their rights. Believe me. Your struggle has not been in vain. You can see the signs.
The first sign is that when the Martial Law of Ayub Khan came, all political parties were dissolved and political activity was completely banned and Ayub Khan established institutions to perpetuate his dictatorship. He had a long-term programme to stay in power and not to restore power to the people. But that was 1958 and this is 1969. Eleven years have passed. The people know more about the world. The people are more awakened. They are more enlightened. They have tested their strength. They have seen the fulfilment of their collective wishes. So the Martial Law of 1958 is different from the Martial Law of 1969. This Martial Law is qualitatively different from the Martial Law of 1958. This is an important consideration because for one thing, this Martial Law has not banned political activity. This Martial Law has not disqualified politicians. This Martial Law repeatedly gives assurances for elections. I agree it is human nature to want to perpetuate yourself. One wants to remain in power, but conditions have changed. I think there is a general realisation that democracy will have to be restored. It is a question of time. The question is not whether democracy is to be restored or not, but when is democracy to be restored? That is the difference.
For that reason we are organising our party. We are not creating problems. We do not want to create unnecessary problems. We want to see that this country is strengthened. We want to see that this country achieves economic and social progress. We want our country to have a constitution. It is a disgrace that in 22 years we have not been able to frame a practicable constitution. We want to make a constitution, to overcome present problems because Pakistan is facing very serious problems. Our national unity is being strained. There is disappointment and despair everywhere. There are so many fundamental problems which require to be resolved. We are, therefore, anxious to find a solution to these problems. We are, therefore, anxious to cooperate in the task of framing a Constitution. We have to make our Constitution for a better Pakistan, a happier Pakistan and a more vigorous Pakistan. We want to see our 120 million people live a life of security and satisfaction.
For all these great responsibilities and tasks, the Pakistan People's Party is willing to offer its fullest cooperation to the people of Pakistan. The Pakistan People's Party is a party of the people of Pakistan. Let me make it quite clear that it is a party of the workers and peasants and the students of Pakistan. It is not a party, afraid of struggle. It is a revolutionary party. It is a dynamic party. It is a party of the youth. It is the party of tomorrow. We are not courtiers. We are not opportunists. We are not seekers of office and we are not timid people. We have struggled against dictatorship in this country. We exposed ourselves to danger. We have risked everything for the glory of our country. This is our tradition. The world has seen the contribution the Pakistan People's Party has made in throwing out a dictatorship.
We know that if there is trouble this time, God knows how it will end and where it will end. This is the most important consideration in our mind. Next time if there is trouble, it might go out of hand. It might be exploited internationally. All sorts of problems might arise and heaven knows what the final shape of that struggle will be. For this reason, we are making a very patient and a very steady appraisal of the situation. We are aware of the delicacy of the situation. We do not want trouble for the sake of trouble. We do not want chaos for the sake of chaos. We want to fight for the rights of the people but the question is the framing of a constitution. Look at the position we have taken. You will see that we have made a correct appreciation of the situation. We have said the most important task is to have a Constitution, a Constitution acceptable to the people of Pakistan.
Now, when we started the big movement against Ayub Khan, if you remember, I had said there must be a new Constituent Assembly, that only a Constituent Assembly could frame a Constitution for Pakistan. After some time, some leaders of other political parties said that if there was another Constituent Assembly, it will again take five to six years to frame a Constitution and it might again get into difficulties, again, there might be a crisis, again we might get a deadlock. We replied that the logical answer lay in having a new Constituent Assembly. For this answer we had taken into account conditions in Pakistan, and the past experience of two Constituent Assemblies. Only an elected body should frame Pakistan's Constitution. We said we did not want the 1956 Constitution because it was defective. The 1956 Constitution was framed by an illegal Constituent Assembly. It did not really have a legal basis because, only the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan had a mandate from the people to frame a Constitution. It was dissolved by Governor-General Ghulam Mohammad who struck the first blow at democracy by dissolving the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan. That was in 1954. At that time people were not aware of their rights. The country was new. We had recently acquired our independence. Leadership was weak. What was the response to this first blow to democracy? Only a writ petition filed in the High Court by Maulvi Tamizuddin.
If it were possible to destroy dictatorships by filing petitions, thousands of writ petitions would have been filed against Ayub Khan, but that is not the way to fight a dictatorship because if dictatorship could be defeated through such a simple method, there would be no dictatorships. No one challenged this illegal act really, neither the leadership nor the people. That encouraged other dictators. They thought it was simple to impose dictatorship. Ayub Khan may have made up his mind on that day when Ghulam Mohammad dissolved the first Constitution Assembly and there was no popular reaction. You overthrew Ayub Khan's dictatorship not by write petitions but by the combined force of the people of Pakistan. That should be a warning to dictators of the future.
We are prepared to frame a constitution and the sooner we do so, the better. The country must have a constitutional base. The legal basis of a country is its constitution. It is a fundamental law. It is a basic law. It is a law from which all laws flow. It is most unfortunate that we do not have that law. It is a tragedy. The 1956 Constitution was defective and undemocratic, but taking into account our past experience, our history, I would reluctantly say, most reluctantly, a say in spirit of compromise, in order to achieve unity and consensus, that we would even be prepared to consider the 1956 Constitution, provided it was amended before being enforced. I say it should be enforced first and amended later, because our experience in the past has been very bitter. There have been many betrayals. There have been many people who gave pledges and then went back on them. There were many people who made commitments and then withdrew from those commitments. We cannot, therefore, have the 1956 Constitution imposed first without amendments and then have the Assembly called in. That is not acceptable. That can never be acceptable to the Pakistan People's Party. If you want the 1956 Constitution, with all its defects, I would say in a spirit of compromise that we are prepared to consider it provided one Unit is dissolved. First dissolve One Unit and provide for these provinces in the Constitution. That is the first amendment and that is a basic amendment without which we are not prepared to consider other amendments. By dissolution of One Unit, I mean genuine provincial autonomy and not a fraud.
The second amendment should be that representation in the lower house be on the basis of population. It is a fundamental principle of democracy. I cannot help it if the majority of people live in East Pakistan. We believe in one Pakistan and Muslim brotherhood. We believe in Islamic unity. If we talk so much about Islamic unity, then why are we reluctant to concede the factual position. If the majority of the people is living in East Pakistan, it is not their fault. If the majority was from here, then there would be no controversy, but because the majority is from there, there is a controversy. We do not believe in twisted principles. We believe in straight principles. My straight principle is that democracy means, "one-man one-vote." And if the majority of people live there, that is all right—they are our brothers. We will trust them. We will not suspect them. They will work for the solidarity of Pakistan. If for eleven years they could tolerate Ayub Khan, why should they not tolerate their elected representatives? We are going to restore a federal form of government with provincial autonomy.
It will also be a basic principle of the constitution that provinces must reflect their equality. Provincial autonomy means provincial equality. This is a fundamental principle. There must be equal provincial representation in the upper house. You will not come across a single federation anywhere in the world where you have provincial autonomy and where provincial equality is not reflected in the structure of the government. We take into account the most classical case of the federation, of the United States of America with its 50 states. You have two houses—the House of Representatives on the basis of population and the Senate where all states regardless of size or population have equal representation.
A federation means union among equal parts. If it is to be a union of equal parts, then it is essential that we must have an upper house. These are our three basic amendments. There might be one or two other amendments, but subsidiary amendments, not basic. If those amendments are brought into the 1956 Constitution, beforehand, and not after it has been imposed, we are prepared to consider it in the interest of the restoration of constitutional rule and in the interest of the return of normal conditions in Pakistan.
Now if you allow me, I would like to say something about One Unit, because this is an important consideration. The One Unit was formed not by the people of Pakistan, but by a coterie of individuals, of palace intriguers. They formed One Unit, not for the solace of the people of Pakistan, but to grab total power, to have the full monopoly of power in their hands. There was a fallacy in the scheme. The fallacy was that they wanted to create a balance between East and West Pakistan. The first ambition was total exercise of power from the central capital. The second aim was to create a balance between East and West Pakistan. Now how was the One Unit imposed? It was not imposed by the elected representatives of the people. You know in Hyderabad under what conditions the One Unit Resolution was rammed through the Sind Assembly. What irregularities were committed to get the approval of the Sind Assembly! You are fully aware of its history. I do not want to repeat it. The same thing happened everywhere. You must remember that those people in the smaller provinces, who made One Unit were acting as agents of this coterie.
That is an important consideration. They were actually being exploited. Now what do they say now? They say that some promises were made to them at that time. This means that they still think that inherently the One Unit is good, but it failed because promises were broken. What were these promises? The promise was that the Sindhi politician who steered it through the Sind Assembly will be made Chief Minister of West Pakistan. Do you believe if he had become Chief Minister, One Unit would have been successful? These matters do not depend on which individual becomes Chief Minister. It is something much more basic and complicated.
Old politicians thought they are the masters of the people and that they will rule for all times. They surrendered provincial autonomy without even asking for a pledge, a written pledge. When a man makes a transaction, even the smallest transaction, at least something is written down, something on a paper. There was nothing in this case, only verbal promises. The One Unit was an unnatural creation. But at least when they say that promises were made, when you are making such a mighty transaction, when you are parting with autonomy, the culture and the rights of a whole region, should you rely on mere promises? And what promises? That a certain Sindhi politician will be made Chief Minister for ten years!
This shows how irresponsible they were. This shows how incapable they were of leadership and why it is necessary to condemn them for all times, so that never again can they sell their constituents down the river. Their fate should be an abject lesson for all potential traitors. I have no personal grievance against them, no personal grudge. Do you realise how much bitterness and hatred has come in the wake of this unnatural phenomenon? How much Pakistan has been weakened? How much Pakistan has suffered? These people will have to be made accountable just as the people are demanding that Ayub Khan should be made accountable. Why are the people demanding that Ayub Khan should answer for his deeds? Our people are not bloodthirsty. Our people have suffered a lot. When they succeed in something, they are prepared to forget but, yet, they are asking for Ayub's trial so that no one in future should aspire to become an Ayub.
The second fallacy of the One Unit was that a balance cannot be created in this fashion. You cannot have a federation of two provinces. A federation of two provinces does not exist anywhere in the world. If a federation has to succeed, it must be of more than two provinces. A two-province federation means two equal parts. Two equal parts mean two countries eventually. It means two entities—polarisation. This was bound to happen. I anticipated this in 1954. At that time as leader of Sind Youth Front, I wrote a pamphlet on it and I foresaw this. I said One Unit will fail. It cannot succeed. Apart from all its other unnatural consequences, it was intended to take East and West Pakistan apart. When you have two separate and equal provinces, naturally, there are centrifugal pulls. It becomes a sort of competition.
I gave you a pledge in the Sind University that I will never betray the interest of any part of Pakistan, because I believe in the glory of Pakistan. I believe in the greatness of Pakistan. And I also told you to give me sometime. I wanted time because I wanted to impress on some of the leaders of the Punjab that if One Unit continued it will destroy Pakistan. And today Mumtaz Daultana has said that the Unit must go. Maulana Maudoodi had at one time said 'Long live Sind' means 'Death to Pakistan.' People like him do not understand the problem. They should first understand a problem and then make a statement, but he does not understand it, he does not understand even Islam.
Today, there is a unanimous movement for the dismemberment of the Unit. Only a coterie of big businessmen, bureaucrats and some opportunist politicians have benefited from this scheme. It has, therefore, to go. I am glad that now it has become a unanimous demand.
This is a step forward. This is also the result of your sacrifices. How can I forget the sacrifices that the Sind University students made? On 21st of April of last year. I gave a pledge to the students of the Sind University that their sacrifices will never go in vain and a movement is to be launched. Their sacrifices will not be forgotten. We are coming close to the realisation of our just demands and I tell you that, as far as I am concerned, I will stand by you. You will not find one statement of mine on One Unit as Minister, not a single statement you will find in which I gave support to One Unit. I wanted its dissolution on a national basis, because it could only come on a national basis. I wanted to speak to the people of the other parts of the country about the disastrous consequences of One Unit. I explained this to my party committee of the Punjab and Bahawalpur and it passed a unanimous resolution for the dismemberment of One Unit.
That is why I told you to give me time because after all we have to work together. I cannot take the line of the past, the opportunists' line. To me the people are supreme, to me the people are the masters. I owe everything to the people of Pakistan. They are my friends: they are the ones who stood by me, who have been with me all through my struggle.
Now so far as a zonal federation is concerned, it is another dangerous scheme. I do not understand in the first place why there should be a zonal federation. After all, provinces existed before One Unit. The same river Indus was there before One Unit. They say how will the irrigation system function? How will the electric power and railways function? This is not correct. We are not the only country in the world with a river. We are not the only country in the world with electricity. We are not the only country in the world with railways. There are other countries. You have an Indian federation where there are so many rivers, passing through various provinces. You have a river in the United States that not only flows through many states but through Canada, another country. There is the Danube in Europe which flows through many countries of Europe and whose waters are shared by all in a civilised manner. But if you hand over the government to people who do not know how to run an administration then they say, "How will the irrigation system work?" Well my answer to them is, "If you do not know how to work it, we will show you how to do it."
It is not, therefore, correct to say that administration cannot run without unification of the provinces. Administration can run smoothly if we go for the common good. We do not want to usurp anyone's rights. We all have a share in the facilities of the country, its wealth and resources. We will decide who will share what. We may set up an autonomous body, if necessary, to handle inter-provincial matters. These are matters which have been solved by other countries. There are solutions to these problems. We know the solutions to these problems. A zonal federation is not necessary. It will be like giving with one hand and taking away with the other. It will kill provincial autonomy. And why do they want to divide and create one more province of Bahawalpur? If the people of Bahawalpur and Multan want a province, that is a different thing, but is it in their self-interest that they should create a new province? First, they destroyed the real provinces; now they want to create artificial provinces. When we have real provinces, genuine historic provinces, they call for an end to provincialism. First they said provincialism was a curse and un-Islamic. Now they want to create one more province. Where is the logic? Tomorrow they will create another province in north Bengal. They want mischief. They want trouble. They are troublemakers, they are mischief-mongers, they are opportunists. Unless there is trouble, they cannot survive.
If the people of Bahawalpur and Multan have any difficulty, then we have got to ask the people of Multan and Bahawalpur whether they want a separate province. We have not heard them make this demand. We are aware of this demand in Sind, in Baluchistan, in Sarhad but not in Bahawalpur. The old provinces have existed historically, linguistically, culturally, at the time of the British, and long before the British. The most important effect of a zonal federation will be that a day will soon come when East Pakistan will demand a confederation. They will say, "If you can share three or four subjects between yourselves in the West, then let us also share two or three subjects only and have a confederation. The principle is the same." The East Pakistanis will say since we are separated by one thousand miles, let us make confederal arrangements. They will say, "Then let us go a step forward. You have taken a step towards a zonal federation, now take a step towards confederation."
We will never give up our struggle for democracy. The Pakistan People's Party's manifesto says that democracy is our polity. Democracy is a government in which the people have a voice. It is their government. East and West Pakistan can only remain together under democracy. When you have elected representatives from there and elected representatives from here, voting jointly, supporting government policy jointly, only then will our unity be lasting. We are going through a delicate period, a difficult period. The Government has repeatedly said it is going to restore democracy. We have given it time and we will see. We are watching. We are developing our party. We have no reason so far to doubt that it does not wish to restore democracy.
We are prepared to cooperate but we will wait for a reasonable period of time only. We will wait for a reasonable period of time within which One Unit is broken and within which we evolve the fundamental principles of the constitution. For that we are net only prepared to wait but we are prepared to cooperate. But if this regime goes back on its word and wants to perpetuate itself, then we will fight this regime also.
We want a definite change in the economic system, a real change in the economic system. And for that we want to bring in genuine reforms, especially in industry, because it is there that the worst damage is being done now. We want to bring total reforms in the country. This is a poor country. It is a country where people live under miserable conditions. These conditions have to change. There are poorer countries than Pakistan but they have a better social system. Why cannot we have it in Pakistan? Twenty-two years is too long a period of time. The wheels of history cannot be reversed, and no matter what propaganda is made, no matter what is said, history advances according to a set pattern. You must realise that you have to fulfill the people's aspirations. Without that there can be no settlement of any problems.
No amount of false propaganda would do. First of all, it is said that socialism is anti-Islamic. Islam is our religion. Pakistan came into being because we were Muslims. We will sacrifice everything for Islam. Islam means the strengthening of the Muslim people. How can we serve Islam if the Muslims of the world are weak? How can Pakistan be strong and progressive if the people of Pakistan are weak and they are starving and they do not have even food, shelter and clothing? How can we talk of the strength of Pakistan and the strength of Islam? If you want to serve Islam, if you want to serve Pakistan, then serve the Muslims of Pakistan, the people of this Islamic country. Make the people strong. Make the people powerful and in this way you will be doing service to your God, to your Prophet and to your country.
There is undoubtedly the principle of democracy in Islam. From that principle we extract the parliamentary form of government, adult franchise, supremacy of the judiciary, fundamental rights, central legislature, bicameral legislature, all from one principle, but where is the parliamentary form of government as such Co be found in Islam? But from that one principle we develop sciences because they are not in conflict with the principle. If Islam contains the principle democracy, surely, it also contains the principle of equality. Islam emphasises more on equality than on anything else. Its dynamism is based on equality. The whole inspiration of Islam is based on equality. We cannot see equality in Pakistan. We want to create equality, but when we talk of equality, of socialism, we are dubbed anti-Islamic. Why this inconsistency?
I made my last tour of the Frontier Province in July, a very exhaustive tour. I must tell you that our party there has become very strong. It is strong in the Punjab. It is strong in Karachi. It is strong in Sind and it is growing everywhere. Why is it growing everywhere? Because we have principles and we stand by principles. We have principles, which are in the interest of the people of Pakistan. We have friends and comrades ready to sacrifice and struggle for the betterment of Pakistan. All of you must join us to lay the bricks of that magnificient Pakistan that we want to build. We are busy organising our party. I believe we will have an election. The Government know that the situation is delicate. They know this much. The situation is explosive. They are aware of it and when they say that they want to restore democracy, I believe them because there is no alternative but to restore democracy. This is the only answer if Pakistan is to survive and remain one. There is no other solution.
You see, gentlemen, force has two aspects. When you use force for a just cause, people make sacrifices, like the people of Vietnam. When you apply force for a moral cause you succeed. People fight for their rights. People always fight for their rights. From the beginning of time, step by step, people have gained more and more rights after struggle. Force when used for the rights of the people can never fail; but remember that force used against the rights of the people must always fail. Force for a just cause succeeds; for a false cause it can never succeed.
The answer to Pakistan's problems is to do the right thing, not to use force. If you want to avoid force, then do not do the wrong things. This is one lesson from Ayub Khan's rule of eleven years, namely that force is not the answer to our problems. It cannot be the answer to the problems of any country. But most certainly, it is not the answer to the problems of Pakistan, because we are in two parts. It is more difficult to use force for a wrong cause in Pakistan than in any other country. This is fundamental. We must remember it. Why did Ayub fail? For many reasons. His system was corrupt, and he was dishonest, but he failed primarily because he believed in the use of force. On every matter he applied force. He indulged in vulgar use of force, abusive use of force, brute use of force and so he fell.
And why should force be used against your own people? Where is the victory, when you use force against your own people? Ayub Khan once had an argument with me in Baluchistan when I was a Minister and I told him, "Do not use force in Baluchistan. You are going to destroy this country if you use force in Baluchistan." And he said, "Well, I want to show them they cannot fight with my Government." I said, "Who will be the victor? You are talking like a foreign ruler." Of course, if the people do wrong, if they want to destroy their country, then the use of force is permissible, but for a right cause, the cause of the people. For a just cause, force has been used and has succeeded. You use force for freedom and independence; it is a just cause. If you use force for the liberation of your people and their emancipation and their equality, it is a just cause. But if you use force to suppress the people, to destroy the people, then it cannot succeed. It must fail.
So the use of force is not an answer to the problems of Pakistan. The answer is to be found in democracy, in the spirit of give and take, in the spirit of brotherhood, in the spirit of understanding, in the spirit of reconciliation. On that we are prepared to extend the fullest cooperation to everyone. To each and every political party and to the present regime, we are prepared to offer our cooperation. But we cannot be intimidated and frightened.
So far I have been touring the country and organising my party. I am going to Cairo and Europe soon for two or three weeks. On my return, I am going to hold an important meeting of my party's Central Committee to take certain fundamental decisions. We would have by then seen in what direction we are moving. How we are moving. What requires to be done. After a most exhaustive search and study of the situation, we will undertake tours, after we have formulated our policy and taken into account all the problems of the country. I will tour Sind to which I am looking forward very much, because I have not done this for a long time. I will tour every district of Sind, every important city of Sind. I will tour every district of the Punjab, every important city, every town. I will tour Karachi and Baluchistan. I will go to the Frontier again. I will go to East Pakistan and tour the whole area. Then I will be in a better position, knowing exactly how we stand. What should our fundamental outlook be; where we go from here; in what direction? I tell you, however, that there is only one direction we can take. That direction will be Pakistan's welfare, the people of Pakistan's welfare, that will be the direction we will take.
A word about Tashkent. I had to take a different position, during the war and at Tashkent. It was in the national interest. I could have been like the other Ministers who were saying. "Yes, it is all right. Why not? It was unavoidable." Pakistan's interests were involved at Tashkent, fundamental interests. It was not an internal problem. Internally, we can always fight and resolve disputes but it was an external problem. So it was not a question of being disloyal to Ayub Khan. There was no question of loyalty or disloyalty to Ayub Khan. The question was of loyalty to my nation, loyalty to my people, to Pakistan. I fought Ayub Khan on principles, for the solidarity and welfare of Pakistan. I parted company with him on the question of the sovereignty of Pakistan, on the self-respect of Pakistan, on the honour of Pakistan.