The Constitution of 1973 – The third Constitution of Pakistan:
The National Assembly of Pakistan unanimously approved the Constitution of 1973 on April 10, 1973. Two days after, on April 12, 1973, the drafted Constitution received the assent of the President. It was proclaimed on August 14, 1973. It has some salient features of 1973 constitution of Pakistan (containing some Islamic features as well).
Related Post: Salient Features of 1956 Constitution of Pakistan
Salient Features of 1973 Constitution Of Pakistan:
The salient features of 1973 Constitution of Pakistan are as under:
Like the Constitution of the United States of America but unlike the Constitution of the United Kingdom, the Constitution of 1973 is a written document. There are 280 articles and 7 schedules of the Constitution.
The Constitution of 1973 is Federal Constitution. It establishes a central government and the governments of the federating units, namely, the province of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Baluchistan.
Parliamentary form of Government:
Like the Constitution of 1956 but unlike the Constitution of 1962, the Constitution of 1973, provides Pakistan with a parliamentary form of government.
In a parliamentary form of government, maximum powers are vested in the elected parliament and the Prime Minister, being head of government has many more powers than the head of State (President).
The Constitution of 1973 provides for the establishment of a bicameral legislature in Pakistan. Pakistani Parliament consists of two houses, namely, National Assembly, the lower house, and the Senate, the upper house.
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The Constitution of 1973 is a rigid constitution in the sense that it requires a Two-third majority of the parliament (National Assembly and Senate) for amendment in it.
The 1973 Constitution guarantees fundamental rights to the citizens of Pakistan. Some of the fundamental rights in the Constitution of Pakistan are:
- Equality of all citizens before the law.
- Security of persons and of their properties and other belongings.
- Right to acquire, hold or dispose of the property in any part of Pakistan.
- Freedom of speech
- Freedom of expression
- Freedom of association
- Religious Freedom
- Right to adopt any lawful profession.
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The Constitution of 1973 provides for Urdu as the national language of Pakistan. Regional languages have also been provided full protection by the Constitution.
Islamic Provisions of 1973 Constitution:
The following are the Islamic provisions of 1973 Constitution:
- The Constitution of 1973 also names the country the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
- Islam is the State Religion of Pakistan.
- Sovereignty belongs to Allah Almighty.
- Only Muslims could become the President and Prime Minister of Pakistan.
- Islamic way of life.
- Islamization of laws.
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Direct Election System:
The direct Election System is another salient feature of 1973 Constitution of Pakistan. The members of the National Assembly and Provincial Assembly are selected through Direct Election.
In conclusion, The National Assembly approved the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan on April 10, 1973, and proclaimed it on August 14, 1973. Some salient features of 1973 Constitution of Pakistan are – written, federal, parliamentary, bicameral, rigid, etc.