ELECTIONS OF 1970 The first direct elections to the National Assembly were held in 1970 under the Legal Framework Order (LFO) of 1970 promulgated by the martial law administration of President Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan The elections, initially scheduled for October 1970, had to be postponed until December because of a cyclone that struck the coastal areas of East Pakistan Mujibur Rahman’s Awami League won 162 of the 300 seats in the National Assembly The Muslim League managed to capture only one seat in East Pakistan, that by Nural Amin, a highly respected politician and one of the few who had remained loyal to the old party Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party emerged as the largest single party in West Pakistan, winning 81 seats The elections polarized politics between the forces that wanted provincial autonomy and those that favored a strong central government Mujib supported the first approach toward governance, Bhutto the second The failure to reconcile these two points of view led to a civil war in East Pakistan in 1971 and the secession of East Pakistan from Pakistan later that year

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