I. I. Chundrigar

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Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar
 ابراہیم اسماعیل چندریگر
6th Prime Minister of Pakistan
In office
17 October 1957 – 11 December 1957
PresidentIskander Mirza
Preceded byHuseyn Suhrawardy
Succeeded byFeroze Khan
Minister of Law and Justice
In office
12 August 1955 – 9 August 1957
Prime MinisterH. S. Suhrawardy
Muhammad Ali
Leader of the Opposition
In office
12 August 1955 – 23 March 1956
Serving with H. S. Suhrawardy
Preceded byOffice established
Succeeded byFatima Jinnah
(Appointed in 1965)
Governor of West Punjab
In office
24 November 1951 – 2 May 1953
Chief MinisterM. Daultana
Preceded byAbdur Rab Nishtar
Succeeded byM. Aminuddin
Governor of North-West Frontier Province
In office
17 February 1950 – 23 November 1951
Chief MinisterA. Q. Khan
Preceded byMohammad Khurshid
Succeeded byKhwaja Shahabuddin
Pakistani Ambassador to Afghanistan
In office
1 May 1948 – 17 February 1950
Prime MinisterLiaquat Ali Khan
Minister of Commerce and Trade
In office
15 August 1947 – 1 May 1948
Prime MinisterLiaquat Ali Khan
Minister of Commerce and Industry
In office
2 September 1946 – 15 August 1947
Vice PresidentJawaharlal Nehru
Preceded byPost created
Succeeded bySyama Prasad Mukherjee
Member of the Bombay Legislative Assembly
In office
1937 – 1 September 1946
Parliamentary groupMuslim League (Nationalist Group)
ConstituencyMuhammadan Urban
MajorityMuslim League
President of Pakistan Muslim League
In office
17 October 1957 – 11 December 1957
Preceded byMuhammad Ali
Succeeded byNurul Amin
(Took presidency in 1967)
President of the Supreme Court Bar Association
In office
Personal details
Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar

(1897-09-15)15 September 1897[1]
Godhra, Bombay Presidency, British India (Now, Godhra, Gujarat, India)
Died26 September 1960(1960-09-26) (aged 63)
London, England, United Kingdom[2]
Cause of deathHaemorrhage
Resting placeKarachi, Sindh, Pakistan
CitizenshipBritish India
Political partyMuslim League
Children3 sons, including Abdullah,[2] Abu Bakr,[2] and Iqbal.
Alma materUniversity of Bombay
(BA in Phil. and LLB)
ProfessionLawyer, diplomat
WebsiteI. I. Chundrigar
Official website

Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar[3] (Urdu: ابراہیم اسماعیل چندریگر; 15 September 1897[1] – 26 September 1960), best known as I. I. Chundrigar, was a Pakistani politician who served as the sixth prime minister of Pakistan, appointed in this capacity on 17 October 1957. He resigned due to a vote of no confidence on 11 December 1957, against him.

He was trained in constitutional law at the University of Bombay and was one of the Founding Fathers of the Dominion of Pakistan. Having served for just 55 days, Chundrigar's tenure is the third shortest served in the parliamentary history of Pakistan, after those of Shujaat Hussain and Nurul Amin, who served as prime minister for 54 and 13 days, respectively.[4][5]


Early life and law practice[edit]

Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar, a Muhajir, was born in Godhra, Gujarat, in India on 15 September 1897.[1][6] He was the only child of his Kutchi Chundrigar family, a Muslim community in India.[7]

Chundrigar was initially schooled in Ahmedabad where he finished his matriculation and moved to Bombay for his higher studies. He attended the University of Bombay where he earned a BA degree in philosophy, and later the LLB degree in 1929.[8][9][10] From 1929 till 1932, Chundrigar served as a lawyer for the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation.[11]

From 1932 until 1937, Chundrigar practiced civil law, and moved to practice and read law at the Bombay High Court in 1937, where he established his reputation.[10] During this time, he became acquainted with Muhammad Ali Jinnah, sharing similar ideology, work ethics, and political views.[12][7]

In 1935, Chundrigar was chosen by the Muslim League to give a response to the Government of India Act 1935 introduced by the British government in India. Notably, concerning the role of the Governor-General as head of state, Chundrigar denied that the Governor-General enjoyed the powers supposedly granted by the Act.[13]

From 1937 till 1946, Chundrigar practiced and read law, taking several cases on civil matters where he advocated for his clients at the Bombay High Court.[14]

Legislative career in India and Pakistan Movement[edit]

In 1936, Chundrigar joined the Muslim League.[7] He was elected to the Bombay Legislative Assembly from the Ahmedabad district rural constituency in the 1937 provincial elections. From 1940 to 1945, he was president of the Bombay provincial Muslim League.[1]

In 1946, he was elected to the assembly from a Muslim urban constituency in Ahmedabad.[15] He was appointed as Commerce Minister under the presidential administrations of the Viceroys of India, Archibald Wavell (1946) and Louis Mountbatten (1946-47).[9] Peter Lyon, a reader emeritus in international relations, described Chundrigar as a "close supporter" of Mohammad Ali Jinnah in the Pakistan Movement.[16]

Public service in Pakistan[edit]

Diplomacy and governorships[edit]

After the partition of India by the act of the British Empire that established Pakistan, Chundrigar endorsed Liaquat Ali Khan's bid for the premiership[citation needed] and was retained as the commerce minister in the administration of Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan on 15 August 1947.[17]

In May 1948, Chundrigar left the Commerce Ministry and was appointed as Pakistan's Ambassador to Afghanistan.[18][19] Although his appointment was favorably received in Afghanistan, Chundrigar was at odds with the Afghan government (supported by India as early as 1949) over the issue of Pakistan's north-west border with Afghanistan.[20]

Chundrigar's tenure as ambassador was short. He was recalled to Pakistan by the Foreign Office, which viewed his inability to understand the Pashtun culture as a possible factor in fracturing Afghan-Pakistan relations.[21] In 1950, Chundrigar was appointed Governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, a position he held until 1951.[9] A Cabinet reshuffle in 1951 allowed him to be appointed as the Governor of Punjab but he was removed amid differences developed in 1953 with Governor-General M.G. Muhammad when he enforced martial law at the request of Prime Minister K. Nazimuddin to control violent religious riots that occurred in Lahore, Pakistan.[4]

Law ministry in coalition administration[edit]

In 1955, Chundrigar was invited to join the central government of a three-party coalition: the Awami League, the Muslim League, and the Republican Party.[4] He was appointed as minister of law and justice.[22] During this time, he also acted as a leader of the opposition, opposing the mainstream agenda presented by the Republican Party.[23]

At the National Assembly, he established his reputation as more of a constitutional lawyer than a politician, and gained a lot of prominence in public for his arguments in favour of parliamentarianism when he pleaded the case of "Maulvi Tamizuddin vs. Federation of Pakistan".[9]

Prime Minister of Pakistan (1957)[edit]

Third Shortest tenure as Prime Minister[edit]

After the resignation of Prime Minister Suhrawardy in 1957, Chundrigar was nominated as the Prime Minister and was supported by the Awami League, the Krishak Sramik Party, the Nizem-i-Islam Party, and the Republican Party.[24] However, this coalition of mixed parties weakened Chundrigar's authority to run the central government, and divisions within the coalition would soon hamper his efforts to amend the Electoral College.[9] On 18 October 1957, Chundrigar became the Prime Minister of Pakistan, receiving his oath of office from Chief Justice M. Munir.[24]

At the first session of the National Assembly, Chundrigar presented his plan to reform the Electoral College which was met with great parliamentary opposition by even his Cabinet ministers from the Republican Party and the Awami League.[25][24] With the Republican Party leaders—party president Feroz Khan and President of Pakistan Iskander Mirza—exploiting and manipulating the opponents of the Muslim League, a successful vote of no-confidence in the National Assembly led by the Republicans and the Awami Party effectively ended Chundrigar's term. He resigned on 11 December 1957.[25][24]

Chundrigar served the third-shortest term of any Prime Minister in Pakistan: 17 October 1957 – 11 December 1957, 55 days into his term.[5][4]

Death and reputation[edit]

In 1958, Chundrigar was appointed as president of the Supreme Court Bar Association, a position he held until his death.[2] In 1960, Chundrigar traveled to Hamburg where he addressed the International Law Conference and suffered a hemorrhage while visiting in London.[2] For treatment, he was taken to the Royal Northern Hospital and suddenly passed away.[2] His body was brought back to Karachi in Pakistan, where he was buried in a local cemetery.[2]

In his honour, the Government of Pakistan renamed McLeod Road in Karachi after him.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Khan Tahawar Ali Khan, ed. (1961). Biographical Encyclopedia of Pakistan. Biographical Research Institute, Pakistan. p. 106. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Chundrigar dies in London". Dawn. Pakistan. 29 September 1960. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  3. ^ His birth name is given as "Ismail Ibrahim Chundrigar". There's a major road in the corporate downtown in Karachi bearing his namesake as Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar Road. The Bombay University confirms his name written as Ismail Ibrahim Chundrigar in their graduating listings.
  4. ^ a b c d Burki, Shahid Javed (2015). "§I.I. Chundrigar". Historical Dictionary of Pakistan. New York, U.S.: Rowman & Littlefield. p. 136. ISBN 9781442241480. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  5. ^ a b Grover, Verinder; Arora, Ranjana (1995). Political System in Pakistan: Role of military dictatorship in Pakistan politics. Deep & Deep. p. 244. ISBN 9788171007387. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  6. ^ Goradia, Prafull (2003). Muslim League's unfinished agenda. New Delhi: Contemporary Targett. p. 53. ISBN 9788175253766. Jinnah Wanted All Non-Muslims To Migrate To India And All Muslims To Inhabit Pakistan. The Book Is The Story Of This Unfulfilled Dream. While Pakistan Particularly, The Western Wing Went About Ethnic Cleansing, India Failed To Encourage`Hijrat
  7. ^ a b c d Chundrigar, Ayesha (29 November 2012). "The Chundrigar Diaries". The Friday Times. Ayesha Chundrigar's memoirs. No. 24/41. Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan. Retrieved 24 January 2018.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Bombay, University of (1929). The Bombay University Calendar. Bombay, India: University of Bombay Press. p. 101. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  9. ^ a b c d e "Former Prime Minister of Pakistan: Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar". storyofpakistan.com. Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan: Nazaria-i-Pakistan Trust. 1 June 2003. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  10. ^ a b Saʻīd, Aḥmad; Institute of Pakistan Historical Research (Lahore, Pakistan) (1997). Muslim India, 1857-1947: a biographical dictionary. Institute of Pakistan Historical Research. p. 111. OCLC 246043260.
  11. ^ Asia Who's Who. 1957. p. 90. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  12. ^ Rehman, Atta-ur- (1998). تحريک پاكستان كى تصويرى داستان. Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan: دوست ايسوسايٹس،. p. 321. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  13. ^ Newberg, Paula R. (2002). "Constituting the State". Judging the State: Courts and Constitutional Politics in Pakistan. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. p. 50. ISBN 9780521894401. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  14. ^ The Asia Who's who. Pan-Asia Newspaper Alliance. 1957. p. 90. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  15. ^ Sho, Kuwajima (1998). Muslims, Nationalism, and the Partition: 1946 Provincial Elections in India. Mumbai: Manohar. p. 172. ISBN 978-81-7304-211-9. Retrieved 29 January 2018.
  16. ^ Lyon, Peter (2008). Conflict Between India and Pakistan: An Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. p. 42. ISBN 978-1-57607-712-2.
  17. ^ Lentz, Harris M. (2013) [First published 1994]. Heads of States and Governments. Routledge. p. 612. ISBN 978-1-134264-90-2. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  18. ^ Pāshā, Aḥmad Shujāʻ (1991). Pakistan: a political profile, 1947 to 1988. Sang-e-Meel Publications. p. 88. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  19. ^ Dani, Ahmad Hasan (1979). World Scholars on Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. Quaid-i-Azam University Press. p. 342.
  20. ^ Yunas, S. Fida (2002). Afghanistan: The Peshawar Sardars' branch of Barakzais. pp. 220–221. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  21. ^ "Foreign Affairs Pakistan". Foreign Affairs Pakistan. Pakistan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 35 (7–9): 487. July 2008. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  22. ^ Constituent Assembly (Legislature) of Pakistan Debates: Official Report. Manager of Publications. 1956. p. 19. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  23. ^ Akbar, M. K. (1997). Pakistan from Jinnah to Sharif. Mittal Publications. p. 149. ISBN 9788170996743. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  24. ^ a b c d "I. I. Chundrigar Becomes Prime Minister". storyofpakistan.com. Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan: Nazaria-i-Pakistan Trust. 1 June 2003. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  25. ^ a b Zakaria, Nasim (1958). Parliamentary Government in Pakistan. New Publishers. p. 62. Retrieved 25 January 2018.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Succeeded by
Preceded by Governor of Punjab
Succeeded by
Preceded by Prime Minister of Pakistan
Succeeded by