Table of Contents
2) Second democratic era
a. 1972: Martial Law is lifted. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto is elected as president. He also launches Pakistan's nuclear programme.
b. 1973: A new constitution is enacted, declaring Pakistan a parliamentary democracy, with a prime minister as head of state, leading a bi-cameral legislature. Bhutto goes from president to prime minister.
c. 1976: Bhutto appoints General Zia-ul-Haq as his chief of army staff.
d. 1977: General elections are held, Bhutto's party wins. Amid unrest following allegations of vote-rigging from the opposition, General Zia-ul-Haq steps in, removing Bhutto in a coup, suspending the constitution and declaring martial law.
3) Second military period
a. 1978: Zia-ul-Haq is sworn in as president. He retains the office of army chief.
b. 1979: After having been found guilty of "conspiracy to murder" in a trial heavily criticized for having been influenced by Zia, Bhutto is executed. Zia's 'Islamisation' policy.
c. 1982: Having put off polls indefinitely and banned political activity, Zia forms a federal council of 'technocrats' he has nominated.
d. 1984: Zia-ul-Haq holds a referendum on his Islamisation policies. His government claims that more than 95 per cent of votes cast were in support of Zia.
e. 1985: General elections are held (on a non-party basis). Martial law is lifted and elects Zia as President. Muhammad Khan Junejo is elected as prime minister.
f. 1988: Amid widening rifts, Zia dissolves parliament, dismissing Junejo's government under Article 58-2(b) of the constitution. He promises elections within 90 days. On August 17, however, he is killed, along with 31 others, in a plane crash.
4) Third Democratic Era
a. 1988: General elections are held, the PPP Benazir Bhutto wins. Bhutto is sworn in as prime minister.
b. 1990: President Ghulam Ishaq Khan dissolves the National Assembly, dismissing Bhutto's government on charges of alleged corruption and incompetence. Fresh elections are held, and Nawaz Sharif, groomed under Zia as the head of the Islami Jamhoori Ittehad (IJI), is elected prime minister.
c. 1991: The National Assembly adopts the Shariat bill, codifying elements of Islamic law into Pakistan's legal system.
d. 1993: President Ghulam Ishaq Khan dismisses Sharif's government for alleged corruption and incompetence. General elections are held, with Benazir Bhutto elected prime minister for her second term. Farooq Leghari, a member of the PPP, is elected as the country's president.
e. 1996: President Farooq Leghari dissolves the National Assembly, dismissing Benazir Bhutto's government, corruption allegations.
f. 1997: General elections are held, the fourth time such polls have taken place since 1988. Nawaz Sharif's PML-N party wins and he is elected prime minister for the second time. Rafiq Tarar is sworn in as President the next year.
g. 1998: Pakistan conducts nuclear tests in the Chaghai Hills of Balochistan, in response to similar Indian tests days earlier. The international community imposes strict economic sanctions on the country in response.
5) Third military period
a. 1999: After the Kargil War, Nawaz Sharif attempts to replace General Pervez Musharraf, his army chief. Musharraf takes power in a coup.
b. 2000: The Supreme Court validates Musharraf's coup and gives him executive and legislative authority for a period of three years. Nawaz Sharif and his family flee to exile in Saudi Arabia
c. 2001: General Pervez Musharraf assumes the office of president, while remaining chief of army staff.
d. 2002: Musharraf wins a referendum on his presidency, granting him five more years in the job. The government claims he wins the poll by more than 95 per cent. A general election is also held, with the PML-Q, a party created by Musharraf and loyal to the president, winning most seats. The PML-Q's Zafarullah Khan Jamali is elected prime minister. Musharraf, meanwhile, institutes a raft of amendments to the 1973 constitution.
e. 2004: Zafaraullah Khan Jamali is replaced by Shaukat Aziz, then the finance minister, as prime minister of Pakistan.
f. 2007: President Musharraf dismisses Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, prompting a nationwide protest movement for his reinstatement. Chaudhry is eventually restored, but Musharraf imposes a state of emergency later in the year ahead of a key apex court ruling on the legality of his rule. The National Assembly, meanwhile, completes its five-year term for the first time in Pakistan's history. Benazir Bhutto, who returned to the country to campaign in the general elections after the passage of a controversial blanket corruption amnesty deal, is killed in a bomb attack in Rawalpindi.
6) Fourth democratic era
a. 2008: General elections are held, with the PPP winning the majority of seats in the national assembly. Yousuf Raza Gilani is elected prime minister, with Asif Ali Zardari, Bhutto's widower and now co-chairman of the PPP, replacing Musharraf as president.
b. 2009: After heightening tensions over the issue, Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and his colleagues in the judiciary are restored to their positions, having been dismissed by Pervez Musharraf after his 2007 state of emergency.
c. April 8, 2010 Pakistan's parliament passes the 18th amendment to the 1973 consitution, which, among other things, reverses some of the changes brought about by Musharraf and also removes the President's power to dissolve the parliament unilaterally under Article 58-2(b).
d. December 22, 2010 passing of 19th amendment for the appointment of the Judges of the Supreme Court of Pakistan and made amendments in the number of members of the parliamentary committee for the appointment of Chief Electoral Officers at Election Commission of Pakistan.
e. 2011: Caught amidst scandals involving both corruption probes and the so-called "Memogate" affair, the PPP government comes under increasing pressure from the opposition to hold early elections.
f. February 14, 2012 passing of 20th amendment for For Free and Fair Elections
g. 2012: After being found guilty of having committed contempt of court for not implementing a Supreme Court order to reopen a corruption case involving President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is deemed to be ineligible to hold public office. He loses his seat in parliament, but not before he becomes the longest serving prime minister in Pakistan's history. He is succeeded as PM by Raja Pervez Ashraf, another leading PPP member and Zardari loyalist.
h. 2013: The PPP-led coalition government becomes Pakistan's first democratically elected civilian-led government to complete its five-year term in office. A caretaker government is appointed and a general election is set for May 11.
i. 2013 June - Parliament approves Nawaz Sharif as prime minister after his Muslim League-N wins parliamentary elections in May. July - Mamnoon Hussain elected president by parliament
j. 2013 November - Lt Gen Raheel Sharif takes over as head of the army on the retirement of General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani.
a. CPI inflation in FY14-15 is the lowest it has been over the 2009-2015 period at 4.8pc, falling drastically from previous year's 8.6pc, with the pace of decline quicker than that of some regional countries.