This refers to the article "Stolen dreams" written by Mr Roedad Khan (October 9). I fully agree with the writer that the dismemberment of Pakistan in 1971 could have been avoided if Pakistan had a democratic system in place. We all remember that the Awami League got clear majority in the national assembly as a result of the 1970 general elections (most fair by far in the history of Pakistan) conducted under Gen Yahya Khan's rule. General Yahya, being chief martial law administrator, was bound to ask the majority party to form government.
Mr Roedad Khan is right in saying that had the politicians been left to deal with the situation themselves, they would have muddled through the crisis. And here I would like to add that but for Gen Yahya Khan's and Bhutto's lust for power, the history of Pakistan might have been different.
Abid Mahmud Ansari
I have seen a number of articles and letters in your newspaper on the topic of the separation of East Pakistan. Most of the writers blamed Yahya Khan or Bhutto for this tragedy. Recently, I had the opportunity to meet some well-educated Bangladeshis in the United States and they were of the opinion that handing over power to Bengalis after the 1970 elections would not have pacified the frustration of Bengalis as the gulf between the two wings had widened to the point of no return.
They were also of the opinion that it was the West Pakistanis who had elevated the stature of Mujib by giving him undue importance. According to them, Bengalis would have overthrown him in any event had he been given the premiership of Pakistan. Instead of a simplistic analysis of the situation we now need to undertake a deep analysis of the whole episode.
Dr Najeeb A Khan
New Jersey, US