Ziaul Haq's coup: PPP observing Black Day today

Published: July 5, 2012
General Ziaul had declared Martial Law on July 5, 1977 and toppled the PPP government. PHOTO: FILE

General Ziaul had declared Martial Law on July 5, 1977 and toppled the PPP government. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: The ruling Pakistan Peoples Party is observing a Black Day across the country today (Thursday) to mark the takeover of the government by General Ziaul Haq in 1977. He had declared Martial Law on July 5, 1977 and toppled the PPP government.

PPP co-chairman and President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari in his message said that July 5 will be remembered in Pakistan’s history as “the darkest day”.

On this day a dictator driven by his self-serving and delusory motives attempted to seal the fate of a progressive and a moderate society by deposing a constitutionally and directly elected prime minister of the country and systematically dismantling legal and constitutional edifice of the country.

Era of darkness

In his message, Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf said that the country had plunged into an “era of darkness” on July 5, 1977 when Ziaul Haq had dismissed the government Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto.

Ashraf said, “An era of hangings, flogging and worst type of victimisation started with no fundamental rights while thousands of PPP workers were put behind jail indefinitely.”

He said Ziaul Haq’s policies of “vendetta” had surfaced when he implicated Bhutto in a murder case and hanged him in April 1979.

‘Protest ceremonies’ in Punjab

PPP Punjab has organised protest ceremonies at the district level in the province.

The party’s Lahore division has organised a protest at Aiwan-e-Iqbal. Federal Minister and PPP Lahore President Samina Khalid Ghurki and PPP Punjab President Imtiaz Safdar Warraich are expected to address the procession.

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Reader Comments (60)

  • smssr84
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:29PM

    Why dont they repeal all the laws made by him??…. Why just celebrate a day? why not correct something he did during his time?…. just observing a black day will not solve issues!!


  • Ghalib
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:34PM

    yes whole Pakistan observing Black day coz of load shedding. we are with u on this occasion.


  • faraz
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:36PM

    Today is actually another dark day for democracy when all corrupt parties have endorsed the contempt of court and dual nationality bill. I would call it another NRO.


  • Hedgefunder
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:38PM

    Why only PPP ? Why not the whole Nation marking this day as a very Black Day indeed ?
    As he was responsible for the state that Pakistan is in today ! In terms of Social Fabric, Lack of Education, Healthcare, Security, Employment, Economic Progress etc……
    Lastly the most important of all, Radicalisation of Society in whole !


  • FP
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:39PM

    PPP should be observing Black Day for their four years dismal performance.


  • NBJ
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:46PM

    And the best day will be when the PPP govt. packs their bags.


  • ali gilani
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:47PM

    He destroyed dreams. I remember that day. I was in tenth grade and this news of a coupe changed my life. After the illegal hanging I decided to leave the country altogether.


  • Uza Syed
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:47PM

    Zia Ul Haq——well he is long gone and how one wishes that he had taken with him the permanent scars caused by the havocs he inflicted upon our country and us and our mindset. His acts and its aftermath is a living proof of the fact that an individual no matter how sincere he is to his own personal belief can not become the all knowing and the saviour of a people; individuals ideas and convictions must be wetted by collective wisdom and consensus of a people before it is accepted so that we all accept a collective responsibility. Well, Zia is gone and what more is there to say about him than hope that the wounds he inflicted are healed someday soon and the scars erased from our national psyche.


  • Shaheer Malik
    Jul 5, 2012 - 2:56PM

    After experiencing the present PPP era I have no doubt in my mind the Zia-ul-Haq was very right in his action.


  • HHK
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:00PM

    Same situation now in country probably worst , Era of darkness is still going on !!!


  • NM
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:02PM

    Zardari’s election should be the darkest day in Pakistan’s history!


  • Ikra
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:03PM

    Had they been in jail till now, our country must have flourished a lot. I wonder WHO is saying about black day. For people of Pakistan every day is black day because of this corrupt government ..


  • Anon..
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:07PM

    and under the present PPP government every day is a black day for the suffering masses


  • A J Khan
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:20PM

    A man who laid the foundation of an intolerance, voilence and destruction of a nation. His was a decade of hypocracy. God curse be upon him.


  • Atif Yousufzai
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:23PM

    PPP democratic coup in 2008 since then whole Pakistan is observing 10-12 hours load shedding black day


  • Pashtun
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:24PM

    after quaId e azam, zia ul haq was the best thing which has ever happened to pakistan….. He was a real patriot and deid for this country……he was not self centered n self interested person like ppp leaders


  • Truth Detector
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:27PM

    Does PPP do anything else other than celebrating or observing the dates which are meaningless as far as real problems are concerned?


  • JAM
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:29PM

    September 09, 2008 was the darkest day for Pakistan…


  • Faisal
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:30PM

    Mr. President we’d even mark the day as a dark day for Pakistan when you ended up becoming the president.


  • Noor
    Jul 5, 2012 - 3:45PM

    This is all his MESS… God has lifted him, but the miseries brought be this man live till now…..


  • Toticalling
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:02PM

    I thought every democracy loving person should observe black day. It appears dictator lovers are plenty in Pakistan. I wonder if they would like to move to Syria


  • hassan sultan
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:14PM

    Under Zia, the previous ruler Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s nationalisation policies were slowly reversed, and gradual privatisation took place. Zia greatly favoured egalitarianism and industrialisation. Between 1977 and 1986, the country experienced an average annual growth in the GNP of 6.8%, one of the highest in the world at that time.

    Source wikipedia. Read more

    Why would uncle sam want such a person who can lift the country., so he was conveniently killed.
    Ever since its been a black day, because our country has been ruled by puppets of the US.
    What ever Zia did couldnt be worse than the drone attacks, bomb blast, and selling our country’s sovereignty to the west.


  • Cheers
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:24PM

    I hardly remember a BRIGHT day since I am born:( Every day has been more terrifying constructing a monster type of history. Poor I:(


  • unbeliever
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:33PM

    @hassan sultan:
    and all that development had no relation with the money provided by american aid?
    how convinently you forgot somethings, and remember the rest?


  • Firefly
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:37PM

    The BAD PERFORMANCE OF POLITICIANS tends the people to PRAISE DICTATORS; Democracy does not mean REVENGE FROM MASSES and USRUP country assets but DELIVERED something TANGIBLE and ease up the life of people.


  • Amir Wayn
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:40PM

    Peope still remember “Mard-e-Momin Mard-e-Haq”.
    History will repeat itself soon


  • M.Imran
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:42PM

    Yes it indeed a black day because the masses of pakistan felling ever bad than the days of dictatership altough country is suffering badly even in this democratic phase. what you gave us is loadshedding,crruption,exceeding oil prices, unemployment.curse on this type of democracy.you people righlly said its a black day.


  • Jibran
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:42PM

    @hassan sultan:
    First, who quotes Wikipedia!!
    Second, Zia created the suicide bombers, creating an army of fanatics, and fundamentalists, who are slitting the throats of Muslims, burning them alive, torturing women and children.
    Third, he was the US puppet. He was behind the massacre of Palestinians in Jordan. He fed the country into US war against USSR in Afghanistan. He skimmed billions from the aid money, and illegal weapon and drug trafficking. The main reason behind the lavish lifestyle of his children.Recommend

  • Jibran
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:49PM

    These dictators lovers are abound in Northern Punjab. Some of them have a new found love for the “Independent Judiciary” as long as it goes after democratic forces. Their heart bleeds for the drone strikes against terrorists, but they are very content when the terrorists slaughter Shias, or they blow up innocent men, women and children. They find justification of the butchering of minorities, and burning alive of alleged blasphemers even if they are mentally unstable. These days these dictator lovers have found refuge in PML-N and PTI. Trust me in a next military takeover (even if against the governments of PML-N or PTI), they will be the first ones to welcome it.


  • Jibran
    Jul 5, 2012 - 4:55PM

    single handedly destroyed the social fiber of the country. A society which was based on mutual respect and tolerance is now engulfed by intolerance, hatred, extremism, and bigotry.

    From Karachi all the way to Khyber the scars are immense, and I doubt Pakistan will ever recover from this darkness.Recommend

  • Jibran
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:00PM

    Blasphemy law introduced by him, and finalized by his political heir is one example of the evils in this country. Yesterday, a group of terrorists burnt alive an insane person under the noose of Punjab policeRecommend

  • usman786
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:01PM

    It was Zia who saved Pak from USSR aggression else it d be an colony. Bhutto with all his intelligence, was a power conscious person who broke Pakistan through exploitation of Gen YahyaRecommend

  • Aliya
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:03PM

    Do these people have nothing better to do than coming up with days to ‘observe’! Absolutely ridiculous. it’s either coming up with days or making up policies for their own good.Recommend

  • Naveed Javed
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:19PM

    Yes the whole nation should observe this as a black day; why only PPP; Does this mean PPP is the only Democratic force in the country? You can criticize PPP but not on this particular; I believe everyone criticizing Govt. don’t have the idea what damage Zia gave to this nation!Recommend

  • Rahim
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:34PM

    Zia is gone long ago, what PPP did so far? Are we better then before now? Why don’t they put their mind on a constructive thought. What a rubbish Government.


  • hassan sultan
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:42PM

    @jibran, why dont u quote some source? wikipedia still better than geo.
    Pick up any economic history book and it will state the same.
    Secondly even a kid knows who is responsible for the soviet war and the palestine killing, and who started the poppy cultivation in afghanistan…and here u are blaming zia. Im sure you also believe that Zia broke the USSR.
    Zia’s children may be living lavishly, but not as much as bilawal and hamza.

    @unbeliever, yes military aid was given to fight the soviets not to build roads did u forget that.

    Tonnes of aid is given now and pakistan is going in the gutter.


  • Yuri Kondratyuk
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:43PM

    Every country deserves its leaders.


  • salim
    Jul 5, 2012 - 5:59PM

    ‘Protest ceremonies’ in Punjab

    Will PML N participate in protest ceremonies!?


  • Arif
    Jul 5, 2012 - 6:13PM

    And the entire nation observes a black day everyday because of PPP and PML


  • Rafi Ka Deewana
    Jul 5, 2012 - 6:42PM

    Some countries have heroes, and some villains. Both serve their purpose if the country can learn from them and move on. A good example is Germany here that Pakistan can look up to.


  • DevilHunterX
    Jul 5, 2012 - 6:53PM

    Military Dictatorship = Civilian Dictatorship

    In Military dictatorship, only the Military enjoys corruption.

    In Civilian Dictatorship, Military & Civilians enjoy corruption.

    Therefore, Military dictatorship is “cheaper” for us Pakistanis.


  • Ahmad
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:01PM

    I agree 100%..


  • deafening truth
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:04PM

    5th July is a black day for PPP.
    The last 4yrs (2008-2012) have been black for Pakistan.


  • Mirza
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:07PM

    Zia may be dead in history but he is still living in madarsas and in the hearts of rightwing hate mongers. This cancer is not going to go away easily without major surgery.


  • 123
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:20PM

    PPP should move on. If we start observing our collective mistakes as black days, we will be celebrating every day as a black day.

    Move on and work to rectify the mistakes. Observing stupid black days wont solve anything. But unfortunately this is the PPP way. Keep observing black days!


  • 123
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:24PM


    This is perhaps our problem. We all doubt we will ever recover and we will keep commenting that we doubt that we would recover.

    This is not how nations recover. Get off your computer screen and work for better Pakistan instead of losing sleep over recovery thinking!


  • apj
    Jul 5, 2012 - 7:31PM

    it’s a case of the pot calling the kettle black


  • Jul 5, 2012 - 7:39PM

    most of the voices in Pakistan discussion boards are shrieking for another military rule. Where is the hope and who can help? The wish of the God will be done.


  • sick of this nonsense
    Jul 5, 2012 - 8:06PM

    I am so surprised by your excellent knowledge in history. What next, 9/11 was a hoax? Man didnt really land on the moon? Holocaust was a sham? Pakistan did not need saving from the USSR. It needs saving from the after effects of a war that we had nothing to do with. Get your facts straight.


  • bazeed khan
    Jul 5, 2012 - 8:07PM

    totally wrong


  • faraz
    Jul 5, 2012 - 8:16PM

    Even PML-N and JI try to distance themselves from him. His real legacy is terrorism. Zia lovers should also disuss the 100 billion dollar loss and 50,000 deaths caused by children of Zia.Recommend

  • .....
    Jul 5, 2012 - 9:00PM

    Both ZAB and Zia took the country and made a joke out of it for personal motives…


  • Tch tch
    Jul 5, 2012 - 9:14PM

    PPP thrity year manifesto , Blame Zia. But, Who made him Army Chief, super seeding many others? Who himself was essentialy a nobody who toadied his way into the corridors of power first through Iskinder Mirza then Ayub Khan? Who protected the military from accountability after 71?(Mainly as he would share a large part of the blame for refusing Paksitan fairest elections)
    Who made ISI and IB Political cells? Who launched the worse crackdown against Baloch Nationalist? Who made the error of involving military High command in political affairs and cabinet discussions? Who begin the use of religion and religious laws to get political mileage? Who was part and parcel of Operation cyclone a full year beofre Zia? Who begin the trend of violent student and national politics? Who tanked our economy? WHo provided protection and re empoyered feudals in national politics? Who played a central in halfing the country? WHo shut down over 200 publication in his rule? In whose rule did the government oponents had a habit of dying off or vanishing of the scene?…
    If the Army had not intervened and the election of 1977 had been repeated as promised by Bhuttos, he would now had long be forgotten.
    Atleast no one is under illusion of Zia many faults unlike the Bhutto followers. They are truly a blight on this country…Recommend

  • Mian Dawood
    Jul 5, 2012 - 9:17PM

    I respect every blogger and comments on writings, but I become disappointed when I see that every writer is blank like me. Is there any body who will deny that Zia is still alive? I think not. Than, Why we celebrate 5th July.. Yes, Zia is alive in everywhere in Pakistan, in our habits, our customs, educations, society even everywhere. So I request the writers don’t mislead the nation especially youth.Recommend

  • Muhammad
    Jul 5, 2012 - 11:57PM

    What????? one dictatorship observing black day for another dictatorship?


    Jul 6, 2012 - 2:37AM

    Gen. Zia-ul-Haq was a true picture of a muslim. Thanks to him we became nuclear power. God bless him!


  • saeed
    Jul 6, 2012 - 3:02AM

    I wish Zia,s 11 dark years can be wiped out from Pakistan History. But few people still want to carry this darkness. I wish people understand difference between dictatorship and democracy.


  • Roti kapra
    Jul 6, 2012 - 12:12PM

    The darkest day in the history of Pakistan was 16th December 1971


  • Naeem Siddiqui
    Jul 6, 2012 - 1:25PM

    If one should be put on trial on treason after death! dictator Zia should be the one.


  • Ahmer Ali
    Jul 6, 2012 - 2:06PM

    Zia-ul-Haq’s and Musharraf’s military regimes were much the best from all aspects than the present PPP’s regime…….


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