It's been forty two years since Bhutto was hanged. Even though I was convinced Bhutto was guilty of the murders he had been accused of, his execution was a great shock. Like almost everyone I knew, I felt that Zia would let Bhutto fly away to another country (probably Libya or UAE), as leaders of many countries were pleading with Zia to spare Bhutto. I think even Bhutto himself was convinced it was a farce, a drama to make him beg for mercy. In retrospect, I believe that it was wrong to execute him. His trial was not fair, and the judges were coerced into finding him guilty.

Why did I hate him? For one thing, he was solely responsible for the dismemberment of the country. If he had been a true democrat, he would have accepted the results of the 1971 election. But that of course would have meant power being handed over to Mujeeb, and Bhutto would have been the leader of the opposition for at least five years. He, along with the generals, refused to allow a Bengali to become the prime minister, and ultimately that led to the secession of more than half the country's population and the formation of Bangladesh.

But that was not the only reason why Bhutto was so unpopular. He destroyed the country's industrial base by nationalizing all the industries that had been set up over twenty five years by hard working entrepreneurs. Most of the factories were then handed over to incompetent people and the country's industrial sector soon collapsed. He nationalized schools and colleges so that his party workers could be given jobs. Karachi was particularly affected, because it was where most nationalized factories and colleges were situated. Due to Bhutto's indiscriminate nationalization, it's impossible to find a Pakistani graduate who can compose a single sentence in any language.

It's been forty four years since he was deposed, but the country is still paying for his vindictive policies.