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LOCAL BODIES ELECTIONS OF 1991

LOCAL BODIES ELECTIONS OF 1991 The second local council elections were held in 1991 while Mian Nawaz Sharif was prime minister and his Pakistan Muslim League was the dominant player in the administration in Islamabad This was the first time in Pakistan’s history that political parties contested local council elections and put up candidates with clear party affiliations The Muslim League did well in the elections, particularly in the provinces of Punjab and the Northwest Frontier; the Pakistan People’s Party dominated the local councils in rural Sindh, while the Muhajir Qaumi Mahaz (MQM) triumphed in Karachi and had a strong presence in Hyderabad, Sindh’s second largest city Tribal maliks (chiefs) continued to hold rural Balochistan in their grip The 1991 elections returned a member of the Muhajir Qaumi Mahaz as mayor of Karachi, whereas the mayors of Lahore, Rawalpindi, and Faisalabad were from the Muslim LeagueThe local councils elected in 1991 were dissolved in July 1993 by the caretaker government of Moeen Qureshi In a landmark decision by the Lahore High Court in the spring of 1996, the dissolution of the local councils by Qureshi was declared unconstitutional The Court instructed the government to restore the councils dissolved in 1993 A day after the decision was announced, however, the Punjab Provincial Assembly, acting under the direction of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, passed an act dissolving the resurrected local councils She acted since the rural Muslim League had dominated the system in Punjab, the country’s largest province



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