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CausesThe causes of the civil war which resulted in East Pakistan tearing away from West Pakistan and the creation of the independent state of Bangladesh in 1971 are complex. From the very time Pakistan was created, the lack of a land link between the two sections of the country coupled with cultural and lingual differences created tensions. The immediate cause of the war was the election in 1970 in which East Pakistan’sAwami League led by Sheikh Majib-ur-Rehman won a majority of seats in the National Assembly. The Awami League had been founded as an opposition party in East Pakistan soon after Independence. It had a somewhat left-leaning ideology and Majib-ur-Rehman, in his fiery addresses in the run up to the 1970 polls – the first in Pakistan’s history – spoke frequently about the need for a moreequitable distribution of power. He also sought more autonomy for East Pakistan.This problem arose from the dominance both politically and economically by the West over East Pakistan since 1947. The military governments which assumed power gave little attention to the demands raised in East Pakistan, and there is