He belonged to a feudal family of Bengal and was the great-grandson of the last Nawab of Bengal, Mir Jafar. He completed his early education at Elphinstone College in Bombay. Later on, he joined Sandhurst Academy in England for army training in Upon his return he was commissioned into the British Indian Army in
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Upon his return he was inducted into the British Indian Army in He was promoted to District Officer in Much of his career as a District Officer was spent in the Tribal Areas. At the time of Partition, he was appointed as a member of the team that was to divide the personnel and assets between the Indian and Pakistan Army. He served at this position for about seven years.
Assuming charge of the province, he openly declared that he would not hesitate to use force in order to establish peace in the province. The first step he took as Governor was to order the arrest of persons, including the two most outspoken leaders, Mujib-ur-Rahman and Yousaf Ali Chaudhry.
By mid June, the number of persons arrested had reached 1,, including 33 Assembly Members and two Dhaka University Professors. By doing so he was able to bring immediate peace, but in the process had sown a permanent seed of hatred for the Central Government in the hearts of the people of East Pakistan.
Ghulam Muhammad, due to his illness, went on a two months leave and left the ground for Iskander Mirza to assume the post of acting Governor General on August 7, However, this temporary charge was soon made permanent.
When the Constitution of was adopted, the title of the head of state of Pakistan was changed from Governor General to President, but the duties and powers associated with the office did not change to a great extent. Primarily, Iskander Mirza was a Civil Servant and it is widely believed that he lacked the parliamentary spirit. He was of the view that because of the lack of training in the field of democracy and the low literacy rate amongst the masses, democratic institutions cannot flourish in Pakistan.
He wanted controlled democracy for Pakistan with more powers for the civil bureaucracy. He believed that the Magistrates should be given the same powers, which they used to enjoy during the British Raj. He thought that politicians should be given the power to make policy but they should not interfere in the administration.
Iskander Mirza was also a great advocate of the One Unit scheme. In his opinion religion was to be kept at a distance from politics. History documents that like his predecessor Ghulam Muhammad, Iskander Mirza was a power hungry person and wanted to dominate the political scene of the country by any way possible. Being the head of state, he always remained active in power politics and played the role of a kingmaker. He took full advantage of the weakness of politicians and played them against each other.
To offset the influence of the Muslim League, he played an active role in the creation of the Republican Party. During his short span of four years as the head of state, four Prime Ministers were changed.
Most historians believe that Iskander Mirza was responsible for this political instability. Iskander Mirza felt threatened by the reorganization of the Muslim League and the alliance of the Awami League with the Punjabi groups in mid On October 7, he issued a proclamation abrogating the Constitution.
According to the proclamation, the Central and the Provincial Assemblies were dissolved and the first Martial Law was enforced in the country. Ayub Khan proved to be smarter than the politicians and refused to act as puppet in the hands of the President. On October 27, , Ayub Khan compelled Iskander Mirza to leave the country, assumed himself the title of President, and announced that Martial Law would continue in order to give legal cover to certain reforms he wanted to put through.
Iskander Mirza spent rest of his life in a hotel room in London. He died on November 15 This article was last updated on Sunday, June 01, Disclaimer: The views expressed by the writer are purely their own and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of Story Of Pakistan.
Ia juga pernah menjabat sebagai Gubernur Jenderal ke-4 Pakistan sebelum jabatan itu digantikan dengan jabatan presiden. Iskander Mirza dilahirkan di Murshidabad , Bengal pada dan dibesarkan di Mumbai. Setelah menyelesaikan pendidikan dasarnya, ia melanjutkan studinya di Akademi Militer Kerajaan di Sandhurst , dan menjadi lulusan pertama yang berasal dari anak benua India di sekolah itu. Ia kemudian ditugasi dalam dinas Tentara India Britania pada Mirza hanya berdinas selama enam tahun di ketentaraan, dan sesudah itu ia menjadi oarng India pertama yang diterima di Dinas Politik India yang elit, dan akhirnya menjabat sebagai sekretaris bersama di Kementerian Pertahanan India Britania. Ketika Pakistan terbentuk, Mirza diangkat sebagai Menteri Pertahanan dari negara yang baru itu, dan menjadikannya pegawai negeri Muslim berjabatan tertinggi di India pada waktu itu. Pada ia diangkat sebagai gubernur Pakistan Timur untuk menenangkan wilayah yang dilanda pergolakan politik saat itu.
Iskandar Mirza (1898-1969)