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Yousuf Raza Gilani
یوسف رضا گیلانی

Assumed office 
25 March 2008
President Pervez Musharraf
Muhammad Mian Soomro (Acting)
Asif Ali Zardari
Preceded by Muhammad Mian Soomro

In office
17 October 1993 – 16 February 1997
Preceded by Gohar Ayub Khan
Succeeded by Elahi Bux Soomro

Vice Chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party
Assumed office 
Serving with Makhdoom Ameen Faheem

Born 9 June 1952 (1952-06-09) (age 57)
Karachi, Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Political party Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Flagge der Pakistanischen Volkspartei.svg
Spouse(s) Fauzia Gilani [1]
Residence Multan, Pakistan
Religion Islam

Makhdoom Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani (Urdu: مخدوم سیّد یوسف رضا گیلانی) (born 9 June 1952) is the 26th and current Prime Minister of Pakistan. He was previously Speaker of the National Assembly (1993-1997) and a Federal Minister (1985-1986, 1989-1990). Gilani is Vice-Chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP).

He was nominated as Prime Minister by the PPP, with the support of its coalition partners, Pakistan Muslim League (N), Awami National Party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (F) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement, on 22 March 2008.[2] He took the oath of office from President Pervez Musharraf on 25 March 2008.[3] Gilani is the first elected Prime Minister of Pakistan from the Saraiki-speaking belt.[4]


Family and education

Gilani was born in Karachi on 9 June 1952 . He belongs to an influential political family from Multan. His father was a descendant of Syed Musa Pak, a spiritual figure of the Qadiri Sufism order which traces its origins to Abdul-Qadir Gilani of the Gilan province of Iran. Gilani attended Government College and obtained his B.A and M.A. in Journalism from University of the Punjab. Gilani is married and has four sons, one daughter, and one grandson.[5] His eldest son, Syed Makhdoom Abdul Qadir Gilani, started his own political career from Multan, and in 2008 he married the granddaughter of Pir Pagara Shah Mardan Shah II, an influential political and religious leader of Sindh. His three other sons—Ali Qasim Gilani, Ali Musa Gilani and Ali Haider Gilani—are currently studying abroad. His daughter's name is Fiza Gilani.

Political career

Gilani's political journey began during General Zia-ul-Haq's martial law in 1978. He joined the Central Working Committee of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML). He was also a cabinet member in the three-year government of Prime Minister Muhammad Khan Junejo, and served as Minister of Housing and Works from April 1985 to January 1986 and as Railways Minister from January 1986 to December 1986.

After a short stint with the Muslim League, Gilani joined the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in 1988. In the Benazir Bhutto government of 1988-1990, he was Minister of Tourism from March 1989 to January 1990 and Minister of Housing and Works from January 1990 to August 1990. Later, under another Bhutto government, he became Speaker of the National Assembly in October 1993, serving in that post until February 1997.

He has been elected various times as the Member of National Assembly from Multan. In the 2008 general election, he beat Pakistan Muslim League (Q) (PML-Q) leader Sikandar Hayat Bosan.


Yousaf Raza Gilani was arrested on February 11, 2001 under the auspices of National Accountability Bureau (NAB), an anti-corruption agency set up by the military government in 1999, over charges of that he misused his authority while he was Speaker of the National Assembly. Specifically, he was accused of hiring up to 600 people from among his constituents and placing them on the government's payroll.[6] NAB claimed that Gilani inflicted a loss of Rs 30 million annually on the national exchequer.[7] He was convicted by an anti-corruption court formed by Musharraf and spent nearly six years in prison.[8]

The legal proceedings were perceived by many as politically motivated; his party, the PPP, was in opposition to Musharraf, who had embarked on a campaign to coerce party members to switch sides. Thus his conviction by Musharraf-backed courts and subsequent prison sentence are seen as marks of loyalty within the PPP. His imprisonment was widely condemned by various individuals across the country, including Mushahid Hussain Syed, a senior leader of PML-Q. He was released on October 7, 2006 from Adiala Jail, after spending more than five years in captivity.[9]


On March 22, 2008, the PPP nominated Gilani for the post of Prime Minister. PPP completed consultations with coalition partners about the Prime Minister and its allies endorsed the nomination. The formal announcement of the name of Prime Minister was expected to be made that night.

On March 22 at 9:38 pm Islamabad, (1638 GMT), he was officially announced by PPP as its candidate for the premiership of the country.

Many analysts said that they would not be surprised if Zardari succeeded Gilani after a few months. It was reported on March 24, 2008, that Zardari said he was not interested in the job of Prime Minister and that Gilani would serve until 2013 in the position. Speculation that Zardari might be gunning for the premiership grew stronger when he picked the less popular Gilani over Ameen Faheem, President of the PPP. Fahmida Mirza, the newly-elected Speaker of the Assembly, insists there is no plan to replace Gilani. She added, however, that if Gilani did not do a good job, all options were open.[10]

On March 24, 2008, Gilani was elected as Prime Minister by Parliament, defeating his rival, Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi of the PML-Q, by a score of 264 to 42.[11] He was sworn in by Musharraf on the next day.[3] On March 29, he won a unanimous vote of confidence in Parliament.[12]

On the same day, following the vote of confidence, Gillani announced the programme for the first 100 days of his administration. Some of the points he announced were:

  • Frontier Crimes Regulations and Industrial Relations Order repealed
  • PM House budget cut by 40 percent
  • No money to be spent on the renovation of government buildings and residences
  • Talks will be initiated with extremists who lay down arms and ‘adopt the path of peace’
  • A new package for tribal areas promised
  • Employment commission to be set up
  • Madressah authority to implement a uniform curriculum
  • One million housing units to be built annually for low-income groups
  • Irrigation channels to be bricklined.

The first part of Gillani's Cabinet was sworn in on March 31. Of the 24 ministers sworn in on this occasion, 11 were members of the PPP, nine were members of the Pakistan Muslim League (N) (PML-N), two were members of the Awami National Party, one was from Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam, and one came from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. Other appointments were expected to follow.[14]

On May 13, 2008, the PML (N) ministers resigned from Gillani's government due to a disagreement related to the reinstatement of judges whom Musharraf removed from office in 2007. Zardari, hoping to preserve the coalition, told Gillani to reject the resignations.[15]

At the close of 2008, Pakistan's The Financial Daily conducted a public poll on its website; respondants entered the names of their favourite personalities for the year, and Gillani was named among the top 50.[16]


First public speech as Prime Minister

On July 19, 2008 at 11:06pm (Pakistan Standard Time), Gillani appeared on Pakistan Television (PTV) in his first address to the nation. The main points in his address were focused on the crisis of flour shortage, load-shedding, terrorism and extremism, restoration of judges, economic downslide and, above all, inflation and unemployment in the country.The speech was a disaster as a result of which prime minister looked confused on account of mismanagement by his staff.

2008 assassination attempt

Gilani escaped an assassination attempt on September 3, 2008 [17], when unidentified gunmen fired shots at his motorcade near the garrison city of Rawalpindi, officials said. The shooting occurred shortly after Gilani was returning from an official visit to the eastern city of Lahore. His motorcade was going to Islamabad from the high-security Chaklala military airbase in Rawalpindi. A spokesman for the Prime Minister's House said Gilani and members of his staff had escaped unhurt and were safe.He said police had been put on high alert and an investigation launched into the incident. The unidentified assailants fired at Gilani's motorcade on a highway. At least two shots hit the Prime Minister's bulletproof vehicle, TV channels quoted officials as saying. State-run PTV beamed footage of the damage caused by the bullets to the window of the driver's door of the vehicle. Reports said the incident occurred at a spot where former premier and PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif's motorcade was fired at on December 27 last year, shortly before Pakistan People's Party (PPP) chairperson Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in a suicide bombing in Rawalpindi.

According to Gillani's press secretary, Zahid Bashir, a car carrying Gillani was hit by ten bullets in an attack near Islamabad on September 3, 2008; Bashir said that Gillani was unharmed.[18] The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.[19]

Gillani's Role in Chief Justice restoration

During the political crisis of March 2009, Prime Minister Gillani is credited with playing a central role in convincing the President Asif Ali Zardari to restore Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry. This, according to some analysts, have strengthened him as a Prime Minister.[20]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ PPP names choice for Pakistani PM BBC News, March 22, 2008
  3. ^ a b "U.S. diplomats court new Pakistani leaders", International Herald Tribune, March 25, 2008.
  4. ^ 'PML-Q faces defections in Seraiki belt' The News
  5. ^ 'Would-be premier: a profile' Dawn, March 23, 2008
  6. ^ Jane Perlez. 'Pakistani Party’s Leader Chooses a Prime Minister' The New York Times. March 22, 2008
  7. ^ Muhammad Najeeb. 'Top PPP leader held for graft' Tribune India, February 12, 2001
  8. ^ 'Gilani convicted to 5-year RI' Dawn Newspaper, June 8, 2002
  9. ^ Naveed Siddiqui. 'Release not part of deal: Gilani' The Nation, October 7, 2006
  10. ^ Bhutto's Former Bhutto aide expected to be new Pakistan prime minister CNN, March 24, 2008
  11. ^ "Pakistan assembly elects new PM", Al Jazeera, March 24, 2008.
  12. ^ "Pakistan PM gets vote of confidence", Al Jazeera, March 29, 2008.
  13. ^ Gilani wins unanimous trust vote: •Student, trade unions restored •Minimum wage fixed at Rs6,000 •Concurrent List to go •Wheat support price raised •Ministers restricted to 1600cc cars -DAWN - Top Stories; March 30, 2008
  14. ^ "24 members cabinet sworn in",
  15. ^ "Pakistan's Zardari rejects ally's resignations", Reuters (International Herald Tribune), May 16, 2008.
  16. ^ The Financial Daily, February 1, 2009
  17. ^
  18. ^ "Prime minister of Pakistan escapes gunfire, officials say", Associated Press (International Herald Tribune), September 3, 2008.
  19. ^ "Taliban claims responsibility for firing at PM motorcade in Pakistan", Xinhua, September 3, 2008.
  20. ^ "Yousuf Raza Gilani gains strength from shift of power in Pakistan", TimesOnline, March 20, 2009.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Gohar Ayub Khan
Speaker of National Assembly
1993 – 1997
Succeeded by
Elahi Bux Soomro
Preceded by
Muhammad Mian Soomro
Prime Minister of Pakistan

Simple English

Yousaf Raza Gilani
يوسف رضا گیلانى
File:Syed Gillani - World Economic Forum on the Middle East

Prime Minister of Pakistan
Assumed office 
25 March 2008
President Pervez Musharraf
Preceded by Muhammad Mian Soomro

Speaker of National Assembly
In office
17 October 1993 – 16 February 1997
Preceded by Gohar Ayub Khan
Succeeded by Elahi Bux Soomro

Vice Chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party
Assumed office 
Serving with Makhdoom Amin Fahim

Born 9 June 1952 (1952-06-09) (age 58)
Karachi, Pakistan
Political party PPP
Spouse Elahi Gilani [1]
Residence Multan, Pakistan
Religion Islam

Syed Makhdoom Yousaf Raza Gillani (Urdu: مخدوم سيد يوسف رضا گیلانى) (born June 9, 1952 in Karachi) is the twenty-sixth and current Prime Minister of Pakistan. He was a former Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan (1993-1997) and former Federal Minister (1985-1986).

He was nominated by Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), with the support of coalition partners, Pakistan Muslim League (N), Awami National Party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (F) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement on 22 March 2008. He took the oath of office from President Pervez Musharraf on 25 March 2008. Gilani is the first elected Prime Minister of Pakistan from the Seraiki-speaking belt.

Gilani is also the present vice chairman of the Pakistan Peoples Party.




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