Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman

Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman (Urdu: مولانا فضل الرحمان) is the son of the Former Chief Minister of North-West Frontier Province Mufti Mahmud. He is Ameer (President) of a faction of a political party Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Assembly of 'Ulama-e-Islam). His faction is known as Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazal ur Rahman group or JUI-F. He is also the General Secretary of the Religious Alliance; Muttahidah Majlis-e-'Amal (Council of United Action) or MMA. He is originally from the Abdulkhel Banyala area in Dera Ismail Khan District of North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan. He was selected as Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly of Pakistan by the Speaker of the Assembly on May 25, 2004. He remained in that post till his resgination from the assembly in 2007.

Member of National Assembly of Pakistan

Mr. Fazal has been elected to National Assembly on multiple occasions.

He was made Chairman of the Kashmir Committee in the Second government of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

The speaker of the National assembly appointed him the Leader of the Opposition between 2004-2007, but the only reason he got the position was because of the absence of two main political parties from the election scene; the PPP and PML-N.

He is chair of Kashmir committee in the assembly elected 2009,

History and Background

Fazl ur-Rahman inherited from his father mass public support from.. their native area of Dera Ismail Khan. Of the four general elections that Fazl ur-Rahman contested since 1988 from his national assembly constituency, NA-18, he won two with convincing margins. In the two he lost - in 1990 and 1997 - were, as his supporters put it, more because of the engineered results that entrusted heavy mandates to the Sharifs of Lahore on both the occasions. It was because of the family's mass public support and large vote bank in the Dera Ismail Khan constituency that Maulana Mufti Mahmood was the lone leader in Pakistan who had defeated the then invincible Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto in the 1970 general elections.

Fazl ur-Rahman's politics, like his father's, has been at odds with the Muslim League. The father was in Jama'at Ulema-i-Hind (Madani group) which shared the views of the Congress on the partition issue. Fazl ur-Rahman remained in the camp of the political alliances and parties that were opposed to Nawaz Sharif's League. Only once did he contest the election in alliance with the PML, in 1990, and then too he lost.

Fazl ur-Rahman built his public image by supporting Zulfaqir Ali Bhutto's daughter Benazir Bhutto during her second term as the prime minister. His cooperation with the PPP to some extent diminished temporarily his party's image of an anti-secular religio-political entity. His involvement in some financial scandals, specially the charges levelled against him of supplying permits for exporting diesel from Pakistan to Afghanistan, also threw a blot on the party's reputation.

Current Status

He is regarded by some as an opportunist posing as an Islamic leader. However, his critics tagged him with the name "Maulana Diesel" in the past government of Benazir Bhutto due to his involvement in Diesel permits and making a lot of money. Opponents regard him as a corrupt man who is tarnishing the image of Islam.

He urges Muslims to fight, although he and his family have not participated in armed conflicts themselves. He is presently leader of the opposition in Parliament and is rumoured to hold aspirations to be the prime minister of Pakistan one day.