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Lieutenant General Fazle Haq, (Pashto/ Urdu language: فضل حق; HI(M), HPk (10 September 1928 – 3 October 1991)), was a high-ranking general in the Pakistan Army, and the former martial law administrator (MLA) of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. He was the "Corps-Commander" of the XI Corps, and commanded all the Pakistan Army assets assigned in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province. He commanded the combatant brigades, and supervised the clandestine covert network during the Soviet–Afghan War. He was one of the leading generals who led the Pakistan Combatant Forces during the Soviet–Afghan War. As military administrator, he had set up a network of training of the Afghan mujahideen. Under his command, the elements of Pakistan's administrative XI Corps participated in numerous operations against the Soviet Union.

Fazle Haq

Gen Fazle Haq.jpg
14th Governor of North-West Frontier Province
In office
October 11 1978 – December 12 1985
PresidentMuhammad Zia-ul-Haq
Preceded byAbdul Hakeem Khan
Succeeded byAbdul Ghafoor Khan Hoti
Caretaker Chief Minister of North-West Frontier Province
In office
May 31, 1988 – December 2, 1988
GovernorFida Mohammad Khan
Amir Gulistan Janjua
Preceded byArbab Jehangir Khan
Succeeded byAftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao
Personal details
Fazle Haq

(1928-09-10)10 September 1928
Mardan, North-West Frontier Province, British India
Died3 October 1991(1991-10-03) (aged 63)
Mardan, North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan
Military service
Nickname(s)General Fazle Haq
Allegiance Pakistan
Branch/service Pakistan Army
Years of service1951–1985
RankUS-O9 insignia.svg Lieutenant General
Unit10th Guides Cavalry-Armoured Corps
Commands6th Armoured Division
7th Infantry Division
XI Corps
Battles/warsIndo-Pakistan War of 1965
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
Soviet–Afghan War

He served as a chief military administrator (governor) throughout the military dictatorial rule of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq from 1978 till 1985 and also served as the caretaker chief minister of the province in the latter half of 1988.


Army careerEdit

As an army officer, Fazle Haq was commissioned in the Guides Cavalry (Frontier Force) regiment of the Armoured Corps. He was instructor at Pakistan Military Academy in 1953–54 at the rank of captain. During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, then Major Fazle Haq was part of the Guides Cavalry in the 6th Armoured Division, when the regiment launched a two-squadron attack at Phillaurah on 11 September. The attack was targeted against the Indian 1st Armoured Division, and as a result both sides faced heavy casualties. This was presumed a Pakistani victory, as the fighting did not resume until 13 September, as the enemy was more cautious. However, it was a Pyrrhic victory.[1]

As a lieutenant-colonel, Fazle Haq commanded his own regiment, the Guides Cavalry, during 1968 and 1969. Then by 1975, as a major general, he took over the 6th Armoured Division stationed at Kharian.[1] Now promoted to lieutenant general, Haq was the commander of XI Corps at Peshawar from January 1978 to March 1980. By this time, General Zia-ul-Haq had imposed a martial law in the country, and Fazle Haq was concurrently appointed the Governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. After retirement from the army in 1980, he stayed on as the governor, finally relinquishing the charge in December 1985 when the martial law was lifted in the country. During his time as governor and corps commander, he was considered one of President Zia-ul Haq's closest confidantes and a key architect of the Afghan mujahidin groups. He was actively involved with Afghan mujahidin groups, including the Haqqani group and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar till the end of the Soviet-Afghan war and often met with high-ranking CIA and government officials, including Attorney General of the United States William F. Smith and other political key figures for funding and support for the Afghan terrorism. He remains to this day well respected and well known among the people of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa for services rendered during his tenure as governor.

Family and personal lifeEdit

Fazle Haq was born on September 10, 1928, in Mardan (NWFP, British India), now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, to an ethnic Pashtun family. Fazle Haq had two sisters and three brothers. His father, Pir Fazle Khaliq, served as a civil servant. His eldest brother was Major General Fazl-i- Raziq who was chairman of WAPDA and Pakistan ambassador to several countries. His other brothers were Pir Fazle Hussain and Pir Fazle Rehman. He has a daughter and three sons. Two of his sons are doctors, Dr. Arshad Khan, Dermatologist and Dr. Adnan Khan, Professor of Neurology while the youngest son, Asif Khan is a civil engineer. His daughter is married to Col. Javed Noor.[2]

Fazle Haq studied in Mardan up to Grade 3 and pursued his education up to class 8 in Kohat from 1935 to 1939. He then joined Prince of Wales Royal Indian Military College, Dehradun, for further education.[3]

Political careerEdit

He was governor of the province from October 1978 to December 1985. He remained senator from March 1988 to December 1988, member of the National Assembly from November 1988 to August 1990. He also served as caretaker chief minister of the province from May 31, 1988, till December 2, 1988. He was the provincial president of Pakistan Muslim League as well. He contested and lost the 1988 general elections from his home town of Mardan; however, he won from Kohistan. In the next elections, he won from Malakand with an overwhelming majority and remained a member of the NWFP provincial assembly till his assassination in 1991. He also remained as caretaker chief minister of NWFP. On 3 October 1991, he was assassinated on his way home from the provincial assembly session by an unknown assailants. He was buried in Peshawar at the Cantonment Board graveyard on Warsak road.[4]


  1. ^ a b A.H. Amin. "Interview with Brig (retd) Shamim Yasin Manto" Defence Journal, February 2002
  2. ^ Bureau report [1], International The News, October 3, 2011
  3. ^ Bureau report [2], International The News, October 3, 2011
  4. ^ PESHAWAR: Court indicts outlaw in ex-governor murder case (November 15, 2001) Dawn newspaper.

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