Former Governor and Chief Minister of Punjab, Malik Ghulam Mustafa Khar was born on 2 August 1937, in Kot Addu, Muzaffargarh District. His father, Malik Mohammad Yar Khar, was one of the largest landowners of the
Malik Ghulam Mustafa Khar
Former Governor and Chief Minister of Punjab, Malik Ghulam Mustafa Khar was born on 2 August 1937, in Kot Addu, Muzaffargarh District. His father, Malik Mohammad Yar Khar, was one of the largest landowners of the district. Mustafa Khar was educated at Aitchison College, Lahore.
In 1967, Mustafa Khar joined Zulfikar Ali Bhutto as one of the founding members of the Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) as a close personal friend and political ally. He was appointed Governor and Martial Law Administrator of Punjab, the most electorally powerful province in the country by the newly sworn in President Zulifiqar Ali Bhutto, following the collapse of Yahya Khan's military government.
When the 1973 constitution was adopted in August and Bhutto became Prime Minister of Pakistan, Mustafa Khar was given the portfolio of Chief Minister of Punjab, but was later replaced by the far more left-leaning Hanif Ramay. Mustafa Khar was briefly re-appointed Governor in March 1975 before being finally dismissed in July 1975.
Bhutto's suspicions over Khar's ambitions as well as the deep divisions within the PPP in the Punjab led to his refusal to allow Khar to run for Ramay's seat in Lahore. Khar's attempts to run for the seat as an independent ended in failure. Ironically by 1976 former rivals within the PPP, Khar and Ramay were working together within the Pir of Pagaro's Pakistan Muslim League (F).
After sometime in the political wilderness, Mustafa Khar re-joined Zulifqar Ali Bhutto before the 1977 general elections. Khar was jailed by the Gen. Zia ul Haq regime after the 1977 coup, but he slipped out of the country after an understanding with the government of General Zia-ul-Haq. After leaving the country Mustafa Khar promptly joined the opposition to campaign against the dictator, which infuriated Zia and led to the withdrawal of an offer to Khar’s close friend Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi to become Prime Minister.
Returning to Pakistan before 1988, Mustafa Khar had by then had fallen out with Benazir Bhutto and with the backing of army, created the National Peoples’ Party (NPP) along with Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi and other PPP dissidents. The Army believed they needed to neutralize Benazir Bhutto’s influence in Sindh with a Sindhi and wanted to use Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi for that, Mustafa Khar in the meantime contested for several seats in the Punjab and won all of them. However, Jatoi suffered a shock defeat.
Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi became caretaker Prime Minister in 1990 after Benazir’s removal but Punjab’s Chief Minister and Mustafa Khar’s rival Nawaz Sharif out-manoeuvred Jatoi and ended up being Prime Minister. Khar eventually ended up re-joining the PPP before the 1993 elections. After re-elected, he served as Federal Minister for Water and Power under Benazir Bhutto. Defeated in the 1997 election, he was unable to contest the 2002 elections because of a restriction placed on non-graduates from contesting the elections.
In 2007, Ghulam Mustafa Khar was removed from the PPP by Benazir Bhutto due to his controversial statements regarding the deal between Benazir and General Musharraf. He also had a war of words with the secretary general of the PPPP Jehangir Badar, who was called a political orphan by Khar.
Mustafa Khar has been married numerous times and his marriage with Tehmina Durrani, a Pakistani women's rights activist and author, is particularly famous. Her first book, My Feudal Lord, released by Vanguard Books of Lahore in June 1991 caused controversy in Pakistan's society by describing her abusive and traumatic marriage to Ghulam Mustafa Khar.
His daughter Aaminah Haq is a Pakistani model and actress noted as a Lux model and for her role in the television drama Mehndi. The former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hina Rabbani Khar is the daughter of his brother Ghulam Noor Rabbani.