Malik Feroz Khan Noon
Sir Malik Feroz Khan Noon (7 May 1893–9 December 1970), KCSI, KCIE, OStJ, better known as Feroze Khan, was the seventh Prime Minister of Pakistan, appointed to that office on 16 December 1957 until the dismissal of President Iskandar Ali Mirza on 8 October 1958, when he instituted martial law.
Trained as a barrister in London, Feroze Khan worked as an Indian diplomat in the United Kingdom before working as a diplomatic adviser to Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s Foreign Office war minister on matters related to the British Indian Army.
Feroz Khan was one of Pakistan’s founding fathers who helped negotiate and create a nation-state union resulting in a popular constitutional movement led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah on 14 August 1947.
Language Early Childhood
Feroz Khan Noon was born on 7 May 1893 in the village of Hamoka, in the district of Khushab, Punjab in the then British India. He came from an aristocratic and landowning elite family renowned for their riches and who had a reputation in social circles.
Feroz khan Noon attended Aitchison College in Lahore after his initial education, before being sent to England in 1912. The India Office arranged for him to live with Reverend Lloyd’s family in Ticknall, South Derbyshire. He applied from there to study at Oxford University, being originally rejected by Balliol College and instead admitted by Wadham College. Noon lived with Lloyd’s family until 1913 and maintained a romantic friendship with them until Oxford.
Noon studied History and Farsi at Wadham College and graduated with a BA in History in 1916. He was a keen player of football and played field hockey for Isis Club.
During his college years, Midday went to the United States in search of higher education at universities there but returned to Oxford. He interacted with very few Indian students while at university, heeding the advice of his father to study English culture and lacking time to attend any Indian cultural festivals since he focused on his studies.
Noon traveled to London in 1916 to take the test on the constitution. He graduated from the Inner Temple in 1917 as a Barrister-at-Law, before returning to India.
Career in Politics
Khan began studying law at the District Court in Sargodha after returning to India in September 1917 and later moved to the Lahore High Court, gaining his name in civil law until 1927.
Feroz Khan decided to join national politics in 1920–21, and was elected to the Unionist Party board for the Punjab Legislative Assembly. During this time, he developed a close friendship with Jogendra Singh. From 1927 to 1931, he entered the cabinet of Punjab Governor Malcolm Hailey and held the portfolio of local government provincial ministry until 1930.
Feroz Khan was in the cabinets of Governors Geoffrey Fitzhervey de Montmorency, Sikandar Hyat and Herbert William Emerson between 1931 and 1936, where he held provincial portfolios of Ministries of Health and Education.Khan was made an Officer of the Holy Order of Saint John in December 1932. In 1933, Feroze Khan was named Knight Commander of the Order of the Indian Empire (KCIE) in the 1937 Coronation Honors Roll, and in October 1941 he was named Knight Commander of the Order of the Star of India (KCIS).
Diplomatic career: Second World War and Movements in Pakistan
In 1936, when he was appointed High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom, Khan resigned from his public service at Punjab.
In the United States, the British government directed Khan to Washington D.C. on the question of the Immigration Act of 1924. Where Nevile Butler from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office accompanied him in 1941 to discuss the question of American exploration in Baluchistan and the position of the MFN between the United States and the United Kingdom in the light of the Anglo-American trade agreement concluded in 1938.
Khan showed great reluctance to allow American petroleum companies access to Baluchistan because of the difficulties of the Indian government in retaining control over remote areas adjacent to Iran and Afghanistan, especially when Indians were barred from entering the United States.
Feroz Khan, who had pro-British views, backed British actions against the Axis forces at the outbreak of World War II in 1939, advocating for the intervention of the British Indian Army in Africa and the Middle East. In 1940, he actively endorsed Egyptian attempts to build a grand mosque in London.Khan played a key role at the height of the anti-British agitation in India by convincing Premier Winston Churchill of Indian Muslim support for continued British influence there.
In 1941, when Khan was asked to enter the Churchill cabinet, he resigned his diplomatic post, being first appointed as his military advisor to the Indian Army affairs office’s Secretary of State for India.
Khan subsequently entered the cabinet of the Viceroy Executive Council as a labor minister and played a crucial role in counseling against India’s independence, without answering the move of Muhammad Ali Jinnah and other leaders on the Muslim issue.
Churchill assigned Khan to the Department of War in 1944–45, leading his own section alongside A. R. Mudaliar who gave British India membership in the Pacific War Council. He was appointed to the United Nations as Permanent Representative of India in 1945, attending the First Session in San Francisco, California.
Khan joined the Muslim League in 1946, headed by Jinnah. He integrated his division of the Unionist Party into the Muslim League, securing popular sympathy for Pakistan’s cause in the face of Khizar Hayat Tiwana’s opposition, who wanted to remain the Indian Punjab’s Premier.
Khan’s merger of the Unionist Party into the Muslim League was a deciding factor during the general elections of 1945. The Muslim League won Punjab by a landslide.
In 1947, after the creation of Pakistan as a result of the Indian partition, Feroze Khan maintained his constituency and became the MNA of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan.
On October 1947, the Governor-General of Pakistan, Jinnah, named him as a special envoy and sent him to Saudi Arabia and the Islamic world to introduce Pakistan and clarify the reasons for its formation, to familiarize the Muslim countries with their internal problems and to obtain the moral and financial support from the brother countries. Feroz Khan carried out the task he was given in a good manner.
Governor-General of East Bengal
In 1950 he was dismissed from the Foreign Ministry by Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan, who appointed him Governor of East Bengal. However, he was less involved in East Bengal politics and concentrated on Punjab’s provincial politics in Pakistan, contesting Punjab’s Chief Ministership role with Mumtaz Daultana. He had no experience in improving the Muslim League’s political program in Bengal and gave no political intervention at the time of the common language revolution in 1950–51. Returning to Punjab in Pakistan on 25 July 1952, he left the post for Abdur Rahman Siddiqui before returning to the post on 10 November 1952. Feroz Khan left Dhaka on 26 March 1953, to become Punjab’s chief minister.
After the religious uprisings in Lahore that culminated in Daultana’s resignation, Khan eventually achieved his goal by persuading Prime Minister Khawaja Nazimuddin to name him third Punjab’s chief minister.
Ministry of International Affairs
In 1955, Khan left the Muslim League when he helped form the Republican Party, joining the One Union that formed Pakistan’s west and east divisions. He took over the Republican Party’s party presidency and joined the Awami League, Muslim League, and Republican Party’s three-party government alliance that backed Iskander Mirza for the presidency.
Ideologically he was very similar to Mirza and was assigned to Prime Minister Hussain Suhrawardy’s coalition cabinet. Khan attempted to hold talks with India over the Kashmir question and insurgency in Eastern India in 1956–57 but was unable to achieve any breakthrough.
Prime Minister Of Pakistan(1957-58)
After the resignations of the H.S. Suhrawardy of Awami League and the I. I. Chundrigar of the Muslim League, Khan was the last contender from the government of the three-party alliance and started his support for the premiership on the platform of the Republican-Conservative Faction.
Feroz Khan took an oath from Chief Justice Munir on 16 December 1957 and formed a coalition government. At this period, Khan entered into difficult but fruitful talks with Muscat and Oman for Gwadar’s accession at a price of US$ 3 million (current worth US$ 25,503,380.28), which was annexed to the Pakistan Federation on 8 September 1958.
Khan’s ability to annex the Gwadar to the union and address the country’s political problems usually confronted President Mirza who saw him as an obstacle in his way of achieving absolute control. Khan sought to find a consensus with India on the Kashmir issue.
Feroz Khan had not supported Mirza’s re-election when the three-party alliance arranged its own president to replace Mirza in 1958. At midnight on 7/8 October 1958, Mirza declared martial law on the government of his own party and ultimately removed his own designated prime minister to usurp political authority in his own hands.
Malik Feroz Khan withdrew from national politics after 1958 and became a literary journalist. He has written five books on India’s history and on legal and political problems in Pakistan.
·Wisdom From Fools (1940), short stories for children.
·Scented Dust (1941), a novel.
·From Memory (1966)
Malik Feroz Khan Noon was married to an Austrian named Victoria Rikhy Noon who was also a famous politician and social activist. He died in his ancestral village of Nurpur Noon, Sargodha District, on 7 December 1970, where he is buried.