Asfandyar Wali khan is a Pakistani Politician and Democratic socialist. He is a President of Awami National Party. He was born in Charsadda, KPK. Now he is a member of Provincial Assembly, a member of National Assembly and Senator of Parliament of Pakistan. He completed his education in Lahore from Islamia College. Khan has one child whose name is Aimal Wali Khan. Khan’s father name is Khan Abdul Wali Khan and mother name is Taj Bibi.
|Name:||Asfandyar Wali Khan|
|In Urdu:||اسفندیار ولی خان|
|Residence:||Walibagh, Charsadda, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan|
|Education:||BA from Islamia College, Peshawar Pakhtoon Khwa University of Peshawar.|
|President of:||Awami National Party|
|Grandson of:||Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan|
|Date:||19 February 1949|
|Place:||Charsadda, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan|
|Political Party:||Awami National Party|
|Role:||President Awami National Party|
|Preceded By:||Ajmal Khattak|
|Succeeded By:||Ehsan Wyne|
Asfandyar Wali Khan, s/o Khan Abdul Wali Khan was born on 19th February 1949 at Wali Bagh, Charsadda. He has done B.A from Islamia College, hails from a distinguished family of politicians, is the leader of Pakistan’s Awami National Party (ANP) and a nationalist at heart.
Early Political Career
The ANP chief had his initiation into politics as an activist in 1968 during the regime of General Ayub Khan. A student at that time, Asfandyar was a member of Pakhtun Student Federation (PSF) and also of its Central Executive Committee. The PSF was a purely student body lobbying for democracy.
Political Nerve Centre of the NWFP
Charsadda, the political nerve centre of the NWFP, is an area where religion, nationalism, Khanism and the violent peasant movement of 1970s, still have a deep mark on the local politics. The ‘Walis’ are one of the two important political families of the district; ‘Sherpaos’ being the other. Charsadda is the traditional stronghold of Awami National Party, heir to the political legacy of Khaudai Khidmatgar Movement of Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, popularly known as Bacha Khan. Asfandyar Wali’s father, Khan Abdul Wali Khan, was the party’s second President.
Served as Member
Asfandyar Wali Khan has served as Member of Provincial Assembly, Member of National Assembly, and Senator in Pakistan’s Parliament. In the recent 2008 elections he has been elected as ember of National Assembly member from NA-7 Charsadda-I with 56,950 votes, which is 72.77% of the total vote.
Leader of the Pakhtun Student Federation
He served as leader of the Pakhtun Student Federation prior to being elected to the Provincial Assembly in the 1990 election, while in the 1993 election he was elected to Pakistan’s National Assembly – a seat to which he was re-elected to in the 1997 election. He was defeated in the 2002 election, when tactical alliance was formed by all the anti-ANP groups against him. After Asfandyar Wali’s defeat he resigned as President of his party, only to be re-elected unopposed in the subsequent party election. In 2003 he was elected to the Senate as Senator for a six year term.
Governments Operation in South Waziristan
The Government’s operation in South Waziristan makes him feel real bad. He firmly believes that Al-Qaeda is not, by any means, a product of the Pukhtoon society. It’s a foreign element. What is strange about this operation is that those who offered shelter have been arrested, and those who took refuge remain elusive. He believes that it’s better to see who is responsible for bringing them here. They come from countries ranging from Morocco to Indonesia. Who harbored them for so long? All this must have certain consequences. He feels that allowing someone else to use your land has its implications. That is why; Pakistan today is facing those political and geographical consequences. He feels that when Pakistan brought these aliens here and looked after them for so long, we had in fact invited trouble.
Asfandyar Wali Khan Believes
Asfandyar Wali Khan believes that “As you sow, so shall you reap”. He detests the false notion of the tribal areas being all bad. He says that all the Al-Qaeda leaders have been apprehended from Faisalabad and Karachi. The whole region has been affected. This is not about the tribal areas alone.
Ever since its inception, the ANP has always had a representation in the National Assembly and the Senate of Pakistan. ANP has never called for a separate homeland. What it has asked for is more provincial autonomy, which is within the restraints and provisions of the federal constitution of Pakistan.
Asfandyar Wali urges the world community that they should take on board the Pukhtoons if they desired peace and stability in the region. Terrorists are killing journalists, religious scholars, tribal elders, doctors, engineers and common citizens, but the movement of Baacha Khan was against terrorism; this feeling makes Asfandyar Wali proud of his grandfather whose legacy he is carrying forward. He is for the Pakhtun cause; and wants the world to respect and regard Pakhtuns as a respectable entity.
Asfandyar Wali and the ANP
Nevertheless, the establishment feels that Asfandyar Wali and the ANP are probably not contributing their bit towards the true national cause; for in the establishment’s opinion ANP is potentially capable of reversing the Talibanization trend in the tribal areas. Even if the establishment’s viewpoint is true, it is the handling of any situation that matters. Anything mishandled is in fact ruined. The problem at hand can only be solved if the establishment acts sensibly enough to recognize the high stakes involved, such as the growing influence of religious extremists in the region and the increasing number of suicide attacks within Pakistan itself.
The Awami National Party
Asfandyar Wali has a rightful claim when he tries to make the establishment realize that ‘Pakhtuns’ are something to be owned up, as dearly as the people of any other province. He and his party – ‘The Awami National Party’ have an ideology that they hold dear, and it gives them a sense of belonging to what they are.
Interview Asfandyar Wali Khan
What is your reaction to the government’s operation in the South Waziristan Agency and the recent killing of 12 tribesmen by army personnel in Wana?
- A: Al-Qaeda is not a product of Pukhtoon society. It’s a foreign element. What is strange about this operation is that those who offered shelter have been arrested, and those who took refuge remain elusive. We will have to see who is responsible for bringing them here. They come from countries ranging from Morocco to Indonesia. Who harboured them for so long? All this must have certain consequences.Allowing someone else to use your land has its implications. You must face its political and geographical consequences.
Did Pakistan have any options?
- A: When you brought these aliens here and looked after them for so long, you closed your options.
Don’t you think the United States would have intervened had Pakistan decided not to carry out the operations?
- A: You have to look at the root cause of all this mess. They brought aliens here. They organised them. They offered them refuge. Now they are reaping what they have sown.
Do you mean Pakistan had a role in the making of Al-Qaeda and the Taliban?
- A: Even Pakistan doesn’t deny the role that it has played.
The federally administered tribal areas (FATA) have a special constitutional status. Pakistan’s ordinary laws are not applicable there. Has this aggravated the situation in the tribal areas, particularly in South Waziristan Agency?
- A: All the Al-Qaeda leaders have been apprehended from Faisalabad and Karachi. The whole region has been affected. This is not about the tribal areas alone.
- Got politicized in 1968 as a student activist, during the national uprising against the dictatorship pf General Ayub Khan, by launching and organizing PSF (Pakhtun Student Federation), a student body pressing for democracy and became its Central Executive Committee member.
- Opposed the military dictatorship of General Yahia Khan who replaced Ayub Khan through a coup-de-tat in 1969 and banned NAP and PSF along with all political activities.
- Was arrested in 1974 and sentenced to seventeen years imprisonment for his political beliefs, but was released by High courts after three years. Was physically tortured during his imprisonment.
- Resumed political activism in 1978 from the platform of NDP (National Democratic Party), which ws formed after the ban of NAP.
- Opposed the military dictatorship of General Zia ul Haq from the platform of MRD (Movement for restoration of democracy) and was imprisoned twice in 1982 and 1985 for his struggle against the regime.
- Was arrested again in 1996, being a member of the parliament, and kept behind bars for one year without any trail, for his political beliefs.
- Elected as Central Party President of ANP in 1998.
- Re-elected as Central Party President of ANP in 2003.
- Was elected to the provincial assembly of Pukhtunkhwa (N.W.F.P) in 1990 and remained a member till the dissolution of the assemblies in 1993.
- Attended a donors’ conference in Singapore in 1992 as the chairman of the Standing committee on Finance in the provincial assembly of Pukhtunkhwa.
- Was elected to the National Assembly in 1993 and was further elected as ANP’s parliamentary party leader in the National Assembly, remained a member till the assemblies dissolution in 1996.
- Attended the SAARC Parliamentarians Conference in New Delhi in 1994.
- Elected to the National Assembly in 1997 and became the parliamentary party leader of AN in the assembly, remained a member till the military takeover in October 1999.
- Attended the Common Wealth Parliamentarians Conference in Namibia in 1998.
- Elected to the Senate of Pakistan March 2003.