South Asian Studies, Vol 37, No 1 (2022)

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Role of Biraderism in Democratization in Punjab, Pakistan; a Conceptual Framework

Nabila Akhtar, Qamar Fatima


Pakistan has been in pursuit for stable democratic system since its creation. The patronclient relationship is shaping and defining the general politics and the biraderi politics of Pakistan. These links also legitimize the politically dynamic biraderies‘ clench on means and resources as well as the transfer of these resources as a bequest to coming generations of biraderies. The process of democratization is directly correlated and undermined due to biraderism that makes its pace very sluggish and inactive. It has been considered irresistible for non-democratic forces. It is generally argued the prehistoric group identities like family, kinship and caste, or biraderi membership, played a more important role in determining voting behaviour than the individual‘s political rational preferences. This phenomenon is overwhelmingly rule in the life of an individual in a society which is still in the transitional phase of democracy. The settlement policies of social engineering of the British had worked very well in the central region Punjab specifically. This is a theoretical and analytical study that presents a conceptual framework between biraderism and democratization process. The process of democratization is a dependent variable and the dynamics of biraderism work as an independent variable.

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