Having started his career in 1948, Babar rose to become a 2-star general and led Frontier Corps
Commandant in 1974. During 1974, Babar was tasked to fund and train Afghan mujahedin, by the order of Bhutto, in order to suppress the government of Davood Khan
, and disbandment of Pashtunistan
policies led by the government of Davood Khan. This operation was a complete and ultimate success after which Baber proceeded to retire from the army, in order to start his career in politics. However, the operation took a new direction when he became governor of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
from 1975 to 1977 under Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto
's government until his term was cut short due to Operation Fair Play
— a clandestine operation undertaken to remove Bhutto. In 1988, Babar was the "Special Advisor on Internal Affairs" in Benazir Bhutto's first government and between 1993 till 1996, Babar was appointed and tenured as the Interior Minister
during Benazir Bhutto
's second government where he supervised and successfully contended the
Babar's early education was from Presentation Convent School, Peshawar
between 1935 to 1939. From 1939 to 1941 he attended Burn Hall School
then located at Srinagar
. The school was subsequently shifted to Abbottabad
after Partition. He also attended Prince of Wales Royal Indian Military College in Dheradun and joined the Pakistan Army in 1948. He was part of the first PMA long course which graduated in 1950.
Army career and Indo-Pakistani Wars
In his long career in the Army, Babar served in the Artillery
Corps and Aviation. During the 1965 war with India, Babar single handedly captured an entire Indian company of soldiers (over 70 POWs) and was awarded Sitara-e-Jurat
for this action.
In the 1971 war, he commanded an artillery brigade in support of 23 Division and later commanded an infantry brigade until he was wounded and evacuated from the battlefield. He also had the distinction of having been awarded SJ & Bar. In 1972, he was appointed Inspector General Frontier Corps
. He resigned from the Army in 1974 while commanding an infantry division and was appointed Governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
Joining the PPP
Babar joined the Pakistan People's Party (the PPP) in 1977 after the arrest of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto
. He famously threw away his Hilal i Jurat (with bar) and other army medals at the presiding officer of a military tribunal, when Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was hanged by the military regime of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq
Interior Minister 1993–1996
In 1988, Babar was a Special Assistant to the Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto and successfully ran the election for Begum Nusrat Bhutto
from Chitral during the preceding elections.
Elected in the 1993 general election on a People's Party Ticket from Nowshera, he defeated Awami National Party
President Ajmal Khattak
, with the PPP's victory in the election and was appointed Federal Minister for the Interior by Benazir Bhutto.
It is believed that General Naseerullah Babar was one of the major proponents of backing what eventually became the Taliban
. This support was driven by a desire to influence the future of Afghanistan
, and to provide some stability on Pakistan's Western border.
General Babar was also involved in a crackdown on MQM
. He became famous after involving in Extra judicial killings in Karachi during operation clean up. This operation was very controversial. From the second quarter of 1996, Karachi became governable yet the political process to remove the grievances of people in urban Sindh was not launched.
1997 and onwards
After the dismissal of Benazir Bhutto's second government by Farooq Leghari, Babar contested the 1997 elections again from Nowshera as well as from Karachi. He was defeated in Nowshera by ANP candidate Wali Muhammad Khan and from Karachi by Nawaz Sharif
's nominee Ejaz Shafi.
Contesting again in the 2002 general elections he was defeated in the electoral sweep of the religo-political alliance the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, mainly due to Musharaff's goals of bringing Islamists in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan to power.
In October 2007, he left the Pakistan Peoples Party due to his disagreement with Benazir Bhutto over her support for General Pervez Musharraf
. This action was considered as a major blow for the Pakistan Peoples Party because he was their major political leader in the Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa.
On 19 August 2008, Naseerullah Babar suffered a mild stroke and was admitted to a hospital. He recovered and returned home in November 2008. Naseerullah Babar died on 10 January 2011.