|A Timeline of Pakistan History
1500 B.C. The Aryans came into the Punjab
ca 500s B.C. The Persians conquered the
Punjab and made it part of the Achaemenid Empire.
526 B.C. Alexander the Great took
control of most of what is now Pakistan.
ca 230 B.C. Greeks from the independent
state of Bactria invaded the Indus Valley.
ca 100 B.C. Scythians from Afghanistan came
into Baluchistan and Sind.
ca 50 to mid-200s A.D. The Kushans
ruled what is now Afghanistan, Pakistan, and northwestern
mid-300s The Indus Valley became part of
the Gupta Empire.
mid-400s Huns from central Asia
conquered the empire.
711 Arab Muslims invaded Sind.
ca 1000 Turkish Muslims invaded
northern Pakistan from Iran.
1206 Most of what is now Pakistan
became part of the Delhi Sultanate.
1526 Babar, a Muslim
ruler from Afghanistan, invaded India and established the
1740s The East India
Company gained political control over much of India.
1858 The British government took over
control of the East India Company. All the company's
territory became known as British India.
1875 Syed Admad Khan founded the
Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College (now Aligarh Muslim
University) in Aligarh.
1906 The Muslim League was formed.
1940 The Muslim League demanded
partition of India along religious lines.
1947 Britain and Hindu leaders agreed to
August 14, 1947 Pakistan became an
independent dominion within the Commonwealth
1948-1949 India and Pakistan went to
war over Kashmir.
1948 Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Pakistan's
first head of state, died.
1951 Prime Minister Liaqat Ali Khan
1956 Pakistan became a republic.
October 7, 1958 President Iskander Mirza
suspended the 1956 Constitution, imposed martial law, and
canceled the elections scheduled for January 1959.
October 27, 1958 President Mirza was
sent into exile and General Mohammad Ayub Khan assumed
control of a military dictatorship.
1967 The Mangla Dam on the Jhelum
River was completed.
1969 General Khan resigned as leader of
Pakistan and handed control of the government to General Agha Mohammed Yahya Khan.
1970 A cyclone and tidal wave struck
East Pakistan, killing about 200,000 persons.
March 26, 1971 East Pakistan declared
itself an independent nation called Bangladesh.
December 1971 Yahya Khan resigned the presidency
and handed over leadership of West Pakistan to Zulfikar
1973 President Bhutto promulgated a new
1975 The Tarbela Dam on the Indus River was
July 5, 1977 The military removed Bhutto
from power and arrested him, declared martial law, and
suspended portions of the 1973 Constitution. Chief of
Army Staff General Muhammad Zia ul-Haq took control of
1979 Pakistan formally joined the
April 6, 1979 Bhutto was executed for
crimes committed during his presidency.
August 17, 1988 A plane carrying
President Zia, American Ambassador Arnold Raphael, U.S.
Brigadier General Herbert Wassom, and 28 Pakistani
military officers crashed near Bahawalpur, killing all of
its occupants. Chairman of the Senate Ghulam Ishaq Khan
became Acting President.
November 1988 Benazir Bhutto formed a
coalition government with several smaller parties.
August 1990 President Khan dismissed
the Bhutto government and dissolved the national and
October 1990 Muhammad Nawaz Sharif was
elected Prime Minister by the National Assembly.
April 1993 President Khan dismissed the
May 1993 The Pakistan Supreme Court
reinstated the Sharif government.
July 1993 President Khan and Prime
Minister Sharif both resigned their offices. Moeen
Qureshi took office as head of an interim government.
October 1993 Benazir Bhutto was elected
November 1993 Farooq Leghari was elected
November 1996 President Leghari
dismissed the Bhutto government.
February 1997 Nawaz Sharif became
March 1997 The National Assembly amended
the Constitution to strip the President of the power to
dismiss the government.
December 1997 President Leghari
resigned; he was replaced by Rafiq Tarar.
October 12, 1999 The army deposed
October 14, 1999 Chief of Army Staff
General Pervez Musharraf declared himself Chief
May 12, 2000 The Supreme Court
unanimously validated the October 1999 coup and granted
Musharraf executive and legislative authority for three
years from the coup date.
June 20, 2001 Musharraf named himself as
President and was sworn in.
November 2003 Pakistan declared a
Kashmir ceasefire; India followed suit.
June 2004 Pakistan mounted its first
military offensive against suspected Al-Qaeda militants
and their supporters in tribal areas near the Afghan
October 2007 Ex-prime minister Benazir
Bhutto returned from exile.
November 2007 Former Prime Minister
Nawaz Sharif returned from exile.
December 2007 Benazir Bhutto was
assassinated at an election campaign rally in Rawalpindi.
August 2008 President Musharraf resigned
after the two main governing parties agreed to launch
impeachment proceedings against him.
September 2008 Asif Ali Zardari, the
widower of Benazir Bhutto, was elected President.
April 2011 The founder of Al-Qaeda,
Osama bin Laden, was killed by American special forces in
Agha Mohammed Yahya Khan
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