Muhammad Ali Bogra Biography

(Former Prime Minister of Pakistan)

Birthday: October 19, 1909 (Libra)

Born In: Bogra

Muhammad Ali of Bogra, or Shahebzada Muhammad Ali Bogra, was from East Pakistan. He was a Calcutta University graduate who went on to be involved in politics for a majority of his life. Beginning with the Bengal Legislative Assembly, he eventually became Prime Minister of Pakistan. Though he was not a well-known personality through much of his career, he was instrumental in helping Pakistan to become the nation it is today. His biggest goal was to create a constitution for Pakistan. To do this, he created the famous “Bogra Formula”. This formula outlined the structure to be used for a Government. Unfortunately, before this plan could come into fruition, Ghulam Muhammad, the governor-general of Pakistan, dissolved the Pakistani Assembly. After the Assembly was gone, he was again re-elected as the Prime Minister and then later went on to become the Ambassador to the Japan. He also made it possible for men to have multiple wives. He himself married his secretary after his first wife had already given birth to two sons. In an interview with the ‘Times Newspaper’, he stated that polygamy was Muslim’s answer to divorce. That way a man can marry another woman he loves while the other wife keeps her dignity intact. He led a life of many accomplishments until dying in his homeland
Quick Facts

Also Known As: Mohammed Ali

Died At Age: 53


Spouse/Ex-: Aliya Saddy in 1955, Begum Hamida Mohammad Ali

Prime Ministers Political Leaders

political ideology: Political party-Muslim League

Died on: July 15, 1963

place of death: Bogra

More Facts

education: University of Calcutta

Childhood & Early Life
Born in Barisal of British India, October 19th 1909 to Nawabzada Altaf Ali, he was raised primarily by his paternal grandfather, Nawab Bahadur Sir Nawab Ali Choudhury. He grew up mainly on his grandfather’s estate in Borga.
He started his education at ‘Hastings House’ in Calcutta. Then Mohammad went to ‘Calcutta Madrassah’ before attending ‘Presidency College’ of ‘Calcutta University’.
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He stayed in Borga and became the chairman of the Borga municipality. Later, he became the chairman of the District Board. Intrigued by politics since an early age he was an active member of the ‘Waqf Board’.
He began his political career in 1937 by being elected to the legislature of undivided Bengal in Calcutta from the MLA (Muslim League Assembly).
In 1943-1946 Mohammad became included in Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy’s cabinet as the minister of health. While the minister, he established the ‘Dhaka Medical College’ and the ‘Lake Medical College Hospital’. During that time, he was also made the minister of local self-government as well as the minister of finance.
Pakistan was born in 1947 and he was elected to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan.
In May of 1948, he left for Burma on a diplomatic mission as assigned by Mohammed Ali Jinnah who was the then governor-general. He suffered a heart attack the same year.
One year later, July 1949, a new governor-general, Nazimuddin, was in power and Mohammed Ali of Bogra was send as the first high commissioner of Pakistan to Canada.
Amid political and social turmoil in Pakistan, he was made the ambassador to the United States in 1952.
Despite his own protests, he was made Prime Minister of Pakistan in April 1953. He was appointed by Ghulam Mohammed, the then Governor-General of Pakistan, and was also unanimously elected president of the Muslim League party. Three days after this election, United States’ President Eisenhower ordered thousands of tons of wheat to be shipped to Pakistan to help the new country.
Also in 1953, he outlined his “Bogra Formula” that would have formed a bicameral legislature. Unfortunately, the plan was put down by Ghulam Mohammed that same year.
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As the Prime Minister started peace negotiation with the Indian Government on issues concerning Kashmir, the governor-general Ghulam Mohammed called for another election. Mohammad Ali again won the title of Prime Minister.
August of 1955 he resigned as Prime Minister and went on to serve as the ambassador to Japan for three years. It was in Japan that he became a member of the United Nations Committee for Re-unification and Rehabilitation of Korea. He was a chairman of this committee for the space of one year.
He then held the office of Foreign Affairs for Pakistan in 1962 under governor general Ayub Khan. He held this position until his death.
Major Works
He is most famous for his “Bogra Formula”. According to this formula the parliament would consist of an Upper House contained 10 seats from each province, making 50 seats total. The Lower House would be determined by the population of each province. This would make it contain 300 seats, 165 from East Pakistan and 135 from West Pakistan.
This formula also stated that if the President were from the East then the Prime Minister would have to be from the West, and vice-versa. Even though this formula was a diplomatic solution to a tense problem, the autocratic leaders of the country did not allow it to be implemented.
Awards & Achievements
The British awarded him the title of ‘Khan Bahadur’. This was the equivalent of an Order of the British Empire. He later rejected the title as a sign of protest against the British Government.
Personal Life & Legacy
He married Hamida. Together they had two children one of which is Syed Hamde Ali.
On April 2, 1955, he married Aliya Saadi who was his secretary.
On 23 January 1963, this eminent politician died of cardiac arrest in Dacca, Pakistan (now Dhaka, Bangladesh)

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