This constitution represented a compromise consensus on three issues: the role of Islam; the sharing of power between the federal government and the provinces; and the division of responsibilities between the President and the Prime Minister, with a greatly strengthened position for the latter.
The Constitution provided for federal system. The Federal Legislature is to function like the British Parliament. In order to allay fears of the provinces concerning domination of the Centre, the constitution established a bicameral legislature with a Senate (the upper house), providing equal provincial representation, and a National Assembly (the lower house), allocating seats according to population.
Islam has been declared as the state religion. The Constitution named Pakistan as the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Only a Muslim could become the President or the Prime Minister of Pakistan. No law repugnant to Islam shall be enacted and the present laws shall also be Islamised.
The President must be a Muslim not less than 45 years of age, elected by members of Parliament. He is to hold office for a term of five years. The President could be removed by the resolution of parliament of not less than two thirds of the total membership. The President could issue ordinances when the Parliament is not in session. The President has the power of granting pardon and the right to be kept informed by the Prime Minister on all matters of internal and foreign policies.
The Constitution sets forth the parliamentary system of Government. The head of the Government, according to the Constitution, will be the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister and his Cabinet is accountable to the National Assembly for his actions. The Prime Minister would be elected by the majority of the National Assembly.
The Constitution of 1973 introduced a new institution known as the 'Council of Common Interests' consisting of Chief Ministers of the provinces and an equal number of Ministers of the Federal Government nominated by the Prime Minister. The Council could formulate and regulate the policy in the Part II of the Legislative List. In case of complaint of interference in water supply by any province the Council would look into the complaint.
Another major innovation in the Constitution of 1973 is the establishment of a National Finance Commission (NFC) consisting of the Federal and Provincial Finance Ministers and other members to advice on distribution of revenues between the federation and the provinces.
The Principals of Policy includes Islamic way of life, promotion of Local Government institutions, full participation of women in national life, protection of minorities, promotion of social and economic well being of the people, and strengthening the bonds with the Muslim world and to work for international peace.
Under the 1973 Constitution, Fundamental Rights include security of person, safeguards as to arrest and detention, prohibition of slavery and forced labour, freedom of movement, freedom of association, freedom of speech, freedom to profess religion and safeguards to religious institutions, non-discrimination in respect of access to public places and in service, preservation of languages, script and culture. The judiciary enjoys full supermacy over the other organs of the state.
Urdu is the national language.
.The name 'Islamic Republic of Pakistan' is selected for the state of Pakistan. .Islam is declared as the state religion of Pakistan..Steps shall be taken to enable the Muslims of Pakistan, individually or collectively, to order their lives in accordance with the fundamental principles and basic concepts of Islam. .Steps shall be taken to make the teaching of the Qur'an and Islamiyat compulsory, to encourage and facilitate the learning of Arabic language and to secure correct and exact printing and publishing of the Qur'an. .Proper organisation of Zakat, waqf and mosques is ensured. .The state shall prevent prostitution, gambling and consumption of alcohol, printing, publication, circulation and display of obscene literature and advertisements. .Only a Muslim could be qualified for election as President (male or female) and Prime Minister (male or female). No restriction as to religion or gender on any other post, up to and including provincial governor and Chief Minister. .All existing laws shall be brought in conformity with the injunctions of Islam as laid down in the Qur'an and Sunnah and no law shall be enacted which is repugnant to such injunctions. .A Council of Islamic Ideology shall be constituted referred to as the Islamic Council. The functions of the Islamic Council shall be to make recommendations to Parliament and the Provincial Assemblies about the ways and means of enabling and encouraging the Muslims of the Pakistan to order their lives in accordance with the principles of Islam. .The President or the Governor of a province may, or if two fifths of its total membership so requires, a House or a Provincial Assembly shall, refer to the Islamic Council for advice on any question as to whether a proposed law is or is not repugnant to the injunctions of Islam. .For the first time, the Constitution of Pakistan gave definition of a Muslim which states: 'Muslim' means a person who believes in the unity and oneness of Allah, in the absolute and unqualified finality of the Prophethood of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad, and does not believe in, or recognise as a prophet or religious reformer, any person who claimed or claims to be a prophet, in any sense of the word or of any description whatsoever, after Muhammad. .The state shall endeavor to strengthen the bonds of unity among Muslim countries. .The Second Amendment (wef 17 September 1974) of the 1973 Constitution declared for the first time the Ahmadiyya Community (derogatorily known as Qadianis) or the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement for the Propagation of Islam (Lahoris) as non-Muslims, and their leader, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who claimed to be prophet of God, to which mainstream Muslims do not agree with.