Thursday, December 27, 2007


Face to face she could appear somewhat haughty, not unlike her role model Margaret Thatcher.

In Pakistan she was often far less popular than her foreign press made out.

To her opponents she was more English than Pakistani, more Western than Eastern. Her Urdu, although fluent, was ungrammatic, while her Sindhi, her family’s mother tongue, was almost non-existent.

After her ineffective first premiership, many forget that her second tenure (in 1993)was almost Thatcherite:

Her tight monetary policy produced a dramatic reduction in the budget deficit, pulling the country’s economy back from the brink of collapse, and earning it a clean bill of health from the IMF and World Bank.

The massive inflow of foreign investment gave rise to expectations of a new era of economic development for Pakistan. Her offer of lucrative packages for foreign investors garnered contracts for infrastructure projects worth many billions of dollars. And her privatisation programme was commended for its transparency and broad ownership approach.

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