Sheikh Mujibur Rahman announcing the six points in Lahore on 5 February 1966

The six point movement was a movement in East Pakistan, spearheaded by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, which called for greater autonomy for East Pakistan.[1][2] The movement's main agenda was to realize the six demands put forward by a coalition of Bengali nationalist political parties in 1966, to end the perceived exploitation of East Pakistan by the West Pakistani rulers.[3] It is considered a milestone on the road to Bangladesh's independence.[4]


Opposition leaders in East Pakistan called for a national conference on 6 February 1966, to assess the trend of post-Tashkent politics. On 4 February, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, along with some members of the Awami League, reached Lahore to attend the conference. The next day on 5 February, he placed the Six Points before the subject committee and urged to include the issue in the agenda of next day's conference. The proposal was rejected and Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was identified as a separatist. On 6 February, Mujib boycotted the conference. On 21 February, the Six Points proposal was placed before the meeting of the working committee of the Awami League and the proposal was accepted unanimously.

The reason for proposing the Six Points was to give the East greater autonomy in Pakistan. Following the partition of India, the new state of Pakistan came into being. The inhabitants of East Pakistan (later Bangladesh) made up the majority of its population, and exports from East Pakistan (such as jute) were a majority of Pakistan's export income. However, East Pakistanis did not feel they had a proportional share of political power and economic benefits within Pakistan. A statistical overview of economic disc

Year Spending on West Pakistan (in crore rupees) Amount spent on West as percentage of total Spending on East Pakistan (in crore rupees) Amount spent on East as percentage of total
% of total population 36.23 63.77
1950-55 1,129 68.31 524 31.69
1955-60 1,655 75.95 524 24.05
1960-65 3,355 70.5 1,404 29.5
1965-70 5,195 70.82 2,141 29.18
Total 11,334 71.16 4,593 28.84
Source: Reports of the Advisory Panels for the Fourth Five Year Plan 1970-75, Vol. I, published by the planning commission of Pakistan (quick reference: crore = 107, or 10 million)

East Pakistan was facing a critical situation after being subjected to continuous discrimination on a regional basis, year after year. As a result, the economists, intelligentsia, and the politicians of East Pakistan started to raise questions about this discrimination, giving rise to the historic six-point movement.[5]

Draft of six-points

Rehman Sobhan, Nurul Islam, Khairul Kabir, Anisur Rahman, Muzaffar Ahmed Chowdhury, and Khan Sarwar Murshid, and other prominent intellectuals drafted the six-point demand.[6][7]

The six points

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman returning from Lahore with Tofazzal Hossain Manik Miah after declaring Six Points

The six points are noted as being:[3]

  1. The Constitution should provide for a Federation of Pakistan in its true sense based on the Lahore Resolution, and the parliamentary form of government with supremacy of a Legislature directly elected on the basis of universal adult franchise.[1]
  2. The federal government should deal with only two subjects: Defence and Foreign Affairs, and all other residual subjects should be vested in the federating states.[1]
  3. Two separate, but freely convertible currencies for the two wings should be introduced; or if this is not feasible, there should be one currency for the whole country, but effective constitutional provisions should be introduced to stop the flight of capital from East to West Pakistan. Furthermore, a separate reserve bank should be established and separate fiscal and monetary policy be adopted for East Pakistan.[1]
  4. The power of taxation and revenue collection should be vested in the federating units and the federal centre would have no such power. The federation would be entitled to a share in the state taxes to meet its expenditures.[1]
  5. There should be two separate accounts for the foreign exchange earnings of the two wings; the foreign exchange requirements of the federal government should be met by the two wings equally or in a ratio to be fixed; indigenous products should move free of duty between the two wings, and the constitution should empower the units to establish trade links with foreign countries.[1]
  6. East Pakistan should have a separate military or paramilitary force, and Navy headquarters should be in East Pakistan.[1]


The proposal was rejected by politicians from West Pakistan and non Awami League politicians from East Pakistan. It was rejected by the president of the All Pakistan Awami League, Nawabzada Nasarullah Khan. It was also rejected by the National Awami Party, Jamaat-i-Islami, and Nizam-i-Islam.[5] The movement had support from the majority of the population of East Pakistan.[8]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Six-point Programme". Banglapedia. Retrieved 22 March 2016.
  2. ^ "Pakistan: A Bad Marriage". Time. 17 June 1966. ISSN 0040-781X. Retrieved 23 June 2023.
  3. ^ a b "Six Points and June 7, 1966". The Daily Star. 7 June 2013. Retrieved 16 January 2018.
  4. ^ "Historic Six-Point Day today". The Daily Star. 7 June 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2018.
  5. ^ a b "The historic six-point movement and its impact on the struggle for independence". The Daily Star. 7 June 2008. Retrieved 16 January 2018.
  6. ^ Sobhan, Rehman (2016). Untranquil Recollections: The Years of Fulfilment (1st ed.). SAGE Publications India. ISBN 978-93-5150-320-0. Retrieved 22 December 2020.
  7. ^ Rahman, Atiur. "Six points elaborated – a call for our survival". Daily Sun. Retrieved 27 March 2023.
  8. ^ Manik, M Waheeduzzaman. "Revisiting the significance of the historic Six-Point Movement". The Daily Star. Retrieved 16 January 2018.