The ulama are important figures within Muslim societies. In the Indian sub-continent, their influence has transcended the socio-religious realm to include the political realm as well. This paper is an attempt to examine the role of the ulama in Pakistani politics. It also seeks to build a trajectory of their future influence in Pakistani politics. There are four parts to the paper. The first part will examine the historical role of the ulama in the Indian sub-continent. The second part will examine their politics in the period between 1947 and 1979. The third part will highlight how the rise to power of General Zia-ul-Haq and the Afghanistan War of 1979 emboldened the ulama to start seriously contesting for political power. Lastly, the paper will look at how the ulama were again empowered by the military regime of General Musharraf to play an important role in Pakistani politics.
|Journal||South Asia-Journal of South Asia Studies|
|Publication status||Published - 2009|