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Factional Conflict in the Punjab Muslim League, 1947-1955

Anwar H. Syed
Polity
Vol. 22, No. 1 (Autumn, 1989), pp. 49-73
DOI: 10.2307/3234846
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3234846
Page Count: 25
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Factional Conflict in the Punjab Muslim League, 1947-1955
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Abstract

Political parties in Pakistan have been unable to give stability and order to that nation's political system, in part because they have been riddled with factions. This article examines factional conflict within the Muslim League, the oldest party in the country, and finds it rooted in the political culture of the landlords who dominate party councils and legislative assemblies. This factionalism is encouraged by the higher levels of bureaucracy, which exercise effective power in the state, so as to keep the political parties from challenging the bureaucracy's preponderance in government. This pattern has characterized Pakistan's experience with democratic politics and is unlikely to change, the author concludes, unless the economic basis of the landlord culture changes.

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