ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Regional Imbalances and National Question in Pakistan-Some Indications

Regional Imbalances and National Question in Pakistan-Some Indications

Regional Imbalances and National Question in Pakistan Some Indications S Akbar Zaidi The National Question has become the most important political question in Pakistan today. Both liberal and right wing sections are aware of the problem but treat the question differently. Unfortunately, the economic reasons for the issue which has found political expression have been largely ignored. This paper is an attempt to examine the economic and social base of the problem THERE is little disagreement over the fact that the National Question has become the most important political question in Pakistan today.1 The term 'national ques- tion', or the problems of nationalities, may imply that it is only the left on the ideological spectrum which is involved in this debate, but that is not so. Both liberal and right wing sections of society are also aware of the problem and its magnitude but they, naturally, treat the question differently. For example, the middle of the road liberal political parties accept the fact that there is some regional inequality in the country, but their units of analysis are limited to the provinces, and thus their solutions are also formulated in that framework. Essentially, they demand greater provincial autonomy and have lately, under the banner of the Movement for the Restoration of Democracy (MRD), put forward the formula that the centre should have control only over communications, defence, trade and the circulation of moneyThe rest of the affairs of the state should be delegated to the four provinces who will devise their own policy according to their own specific needs.

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