Khaleda Zia was the Bangladesh’s first female prime minister governing the country from 1991-1996 and again from 2001-2006. At present she leads the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), one of the largest political party of Bangladesh. She was born in 15 August, 1945 in Dinajpur district in North Western Bangladesh.
She married Ziaur Rahman a then captain in the Pakistani army in 1960. Ziaur Rahman established the BNP to move away from military rule towards democracy.
After her husband’s assassination in 1981, Khaleda Zia began her political career. She was elected chairman of the BNP in 1984. She then spent the next 7 years fighting against General Hossain Mohammad Ershad’s military government. She was arrested several times and endured political harassment. The BNP, though an opposition party didn’t compromise its principles for the sake of forming a political alliance with the ruling military government under her leadership.
When General Ershad resigned in 1990, the BNP won election the next year. Khaleda Zia became prime minister in 1991 after securing the majority votes from parliament. PM Zia worked on education, environmental and gender issues during her first term. Credit goes to her for instituting compulsory primary school education and free education for girls up to grade 10.
In 1996, the BNP lost to Sheikh Hasina‘s “Awami League” in the 1996 elections, the party however garnered enough votes to become the leading opposition parity. During this period the BNP entered into alliances with other parties. An alliance that was large enough to see them win a majority vote in the 2001 elections.
Allowing Khaleda Zia to become prime minister for the second time. Forbes ranked her #33 in its list of 100 most powerful women in 2006. She tried to make the better Bangladesh in her ruling period. Her term as prime minster came to a close in 2006. She ran again for political office in the 2008 elections but lost to Sheikh Hasina’s Awami League.
At a glance:
- Full name : Khaleda Zia
- Country : Bamgladesh
- Date of Birth : 15 August, 1945
- Place of Birth : Dinajpur, Bangladesh
- Age : 69
- Known for : Politician, first female prime minister of Bangladesh
- Fan page : https://www.facebook.com/khaleda.zia
- Official Website : http://bangladeshnationalistparty-bnp.org/
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