Hailing from Baluchistan, Ataullah Mengal is well-known political figure who has been campaigning separatist and nationalist movement in Pakistan for a long time. He was born in Wahd, a small town in the Khuzdar District. After getting his early education from his native town he went to Aitchison College, Lahore from where he did his Senior Cambridge.
He started his political career, when he was made the chief of his tribe in 1953. In 1960 elections, he was elected as the Member of National Assembly but due to his opposition towards the policies of Ayub Khan he was sent to jail. When the Martial Law was lifted he again started participating in the politics and got the ticket of National Awami Party (NAP) and mobilized it in Balochistan. Mengal was deadly against the dictatorial rule of Ayub Khan and his ‘One Unit’ for he thought that this scheme would create many problems for the people of Balochistan who could not compete with the well-educated people of other provinces for jobs, etc. Later on when the ‘One Unit’ was rescinded, he cancelled the domiciles of all the non-local personnel, terminated their jobs and sent them out of Balochistan. In 1970-71 elections the Baloch and the Brahvi Sardars belonging to the NAP won 8 out of 20 seats. As they couldn’t win majority in the province, NAP made a coalition government with JUI in Balochistan and NWFP.
Sardar Mengal became the Chief Minister of Balochistan on May 1, 1972 but his government was dissolved after just eight months on February 13, 1973. Chief Minister Ataullah Mengal and Governor Ghaus Bux Bizenjo were accused of preparing for an armed revolt and jailed. This charge was made after the seizure of arms in the Iraqi embassy. Bhutto said the arms were meant for Baluchistan. But he could never prove this charge after he told NAP chief Khan Abdul Wali Khan that he dismissed the Baluchistan government because the Shah of Iran did not want a leftist