ATP Poll: Who did the most ‘good’?

Posted on August 19, 2006
Filed Under >Adil Najam, ATP Poll, People, Politics
28 Comments
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Adil Najam

In this, the third ATP Opinion Poll (see previous polls here and here) we want to see what you think about what previous Pakistani achieved.

The key word there is ‘achieved.’ We always have plenty of discussions about what leaders have and are doing wrong, but nearly never talk about what they did right. Interestingly, even when we are trying to make a case for someone, we tend to make it by explaining what is wrong with everyone else. After all, if everyone else is bad (and worse) then our guy must be good, at least in ccomparison and by default. The logic makes a perverse sort of sense but tends to take our political conversations towards confrontations (since they are based on ‘attacking’ the other rather than on ‘supporting’ our own). So, here is an experiment to see if we are capable of talking differently about such things.

The Question: Focussing primarily on whatever ‘positives’ might have been achieved during their stint(s) in power, who, amongst the following, did the most ‘good’ for Pakistan?

Ayub Khan
Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto
Zia-ul-Haq
Benazir Bhutto
Nawaz Sharif

[For Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif consider the combined impact of two stints they each had in power]

I have purposely excluded Liaquat Ali Khan because he is now too far away in the past and because his ‘founding father’ status has meant that we usually do not analyze his tenure in political terms. I have also left out Pervez Musharraf (see ATP poll on him here) because his actions impact us immediately and so the passions ignited are too current. Others who had short tenure, or were leading in name alone have been excluded.

I hope we will have a lively discussion in addition to the polling. I realize that we will disagree about what was ‘good,’ but it seems to be that a disagreement about achievements and what we consider to be good achievements is preferable to mere name-calling and may end up telling us something not only about these leaders, but about ourselves.

As before, you can get to the polling area by clicking on the responses in the sidebar, or directly by clicking here.

If you do want to influence the results, please, by all means ask your friends to also vote. Voting is anonymous; as it should be. This will, of course, not be a very scientific poll, but it will at least give us a sense of what this community � the ATP cohort � thinks. Do vote, but please vote only once (even if you are smart enough to beat the system somehow). You can view the results here. [Polling Closed; 12.25 PM EST, 23 August 2006] Analysis of results available here.

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28 responses to “ATP Poll: Who did the most ‘good’?”

  1. worldlife27 says:

    Every leader had his own way of benefiting the country except Nawaz Sharif. He always use to say about dictator but he is forgetting that a dictator(ZAH) got him into the politics. Today, when both the brothers are in politics, they are just here for corruption or to fight with Musharaff. Nothing else are they here for. They have made everything out of the reach of peoples. SOooooooo many taxes have been imposed by them just to full their pockets. and Mr. Zardari, the whole world knows what he is and even all of you. Only Ayub, ZAB, ZUH and in some terms Musharaff did something for this country. Benazir didn’t get her chance to do anything. And our future Chairperson(PPP) is much more then his father. see youtube for his character.

  2. MQ says:

    Akram,

    That the Green Revolution was brought by Ayub Khan is a misconception. Even though Pakistan made considerable economic progress in Ayub-era the Green Revolution, however, was triggered by research carried out in another country far away from Pakistan — in Mexico.

    Norman Bourlag (Nobel 1970) successfully developed high yielding varieties of wheat known as Mexican varieties. They were dwarf in height (2-3 feet tall) and relatively resistant to disease and pests. Their per acre yields were potentially 3 times that of the native varieties. These varieties were exported to Pakistan and India in 1965 under the name Mexi-Pak and Indo-Max(?)under an American. By 1970 the wheat output both in India and Pakistan had doubled. This led to research on rice at the International Rice Research Institute in Manila and development of high yielding rice varieties, known as IRRI.

    Initially the farmers were reluctant to switch over to the new varieties, which they said were not as tasty in eating as the native varieties but soon the economics of production outweighed in any other advantage and the farmers took to growing the new varieties as an earlier generation had switched from desi ghee to Dalda and vegetable oils or from desi chicken and eggs to what is called “farmiâ€

  3. I WOULD LIKE TO SAY Mr AYUB KHAN NO I WHO BRING GREEN
    REVOLUTION IN COUNTRY NO 2 Mr ZOOLFQAR ALI BHUTOO NO 3
    ZIA-UL HAQ WHO COMPLETED NUCLEAR NO 4 BANAZEER JUST GENTLE
    LADY NOT MORE THAN THIS THEN FORGET ABOUT NAWAZ SHARIF NOTHING WAS GOOD JUST RESPONSIBLE FOR RAPE CASES ALONG WITH
    ZIA SHAHID KHABRAIN NEWS PAPER

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