Syed Ghous Ali Shah (born 1 January 1934) (Urdu: سید غوث علی شاہ ) is a Pakistani politician and jurist. He was Chief Minister of Sindh, Pakistan from 1985–1988 and later the Chief Executive in 1999. He has also remained the Defence Minister of Pakistan from 1991–1993 and the Education Minister of Pakistan from 1997–1999. He has been elected the Member of National Assembly of Pakistan from his native Constituency NA-215 Khairpur as a result of the Pakistani general election, 2013.
He received his secondary education in Naz High School, Khairpur. In the 1950s the School had qualified teachers from all over the country and was one of the most reputed institutions of Sindh. His name is engraved on a plaque and hung up on the "Distinguished Students" board. He graduated from the Sindh Muslim College of the University of Karachi, Pakistan. He did his LLB from the Sindh Muslim Law College of the University of Karachi in 1957.
Shah practiced law until 1979, becoming one of the best criminal law lawyers in the country. He was elected President of the District Bar Association Khairpur for record tenures of six years continuously. He was elected to the highest elected office of the Advocates of Pakistan as the Vice Chairman of the Pakistan Bar Council for two terms in 1974 & 1979 when he was elevated to the bench as Judge of the Sindh High Court at Karachi.
From 1981–1984 he was the provincial Minister for Education, Culture, Sports and Law, Government of Sindh. Then he was Minister for Law, Local Bodies & Rural Development from 1984–1985. He got premature retirement from the Sindh High Court & re-entered politics. He was elected as member of the Provincial Assembly of Sindh and became leader of the house and Chief Minister of Sindh, Pakistan, from 1985–1988. In this period he got status of the university for Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai University in Khairpur Sindh which was previously a campus of the University of Sindh. This provided a lot of employment opportunities and he succeeded in providing a network of roads in the Province as well to his electoral area Khairpur.
He was elected to the Parliament National Assembly of Pakistan in 1991 & became Defence Minister of Pakistan till 1993. He was again elected to the Provincial Assembly of Sindh as well as National Assembly of Pakistan in 1997 winning both the seats of the two houses. He resigned his Provincial Assembly seat and became the Minister for Education (Pakistan) till 1999. He was appointed Advisor to the Prime Minister of Pakistan for affairs of the Province of Sindh with powers of the Chief Minister & Status of a Federal Minister in June 1999. He continued in this position until October 1999 when the Army of Pakistan took over in the 1999 Pakistani coup d'état on 12 October overthowing the constitutionally elected Government having two-thirds majority in the Parliament.
Syed Ghous Ali Shah is the Provincial head of the PML-N Sindh & has been elected for another 3-year term from 2006–2009 as Party President of the Sindh Province. He has been elected in this position on numerous occasions since 1986.
It has been reported that Syed Ghous Ali Shah was one of the candidates considered by Pakistan Muslim League (N) for the position of President of Pakistan after the resignation of Pervez Musharraf.
Currently, Mr. Shah is living in Karachi and working with the PMLN members to improve the party's condition in Sindh, while also touring the province heavily to see where he can build up the same power he had back in 1997 when the PMLN had formed the provincial government.
In 1993, he was awarded the Bronze Wolf, the highest distinction of the World Organization of the Scout Movement, by the World Scout Committee for exceptional services to world Scouting.
From 1988–1994 & 1998–2000 he was Chief Commissioner of the Pakistan Boy Scouts Association.
In 1992 he was elected as a member of the Asia-Pacific Scout Region committee till 1998.
He was also awarded the highest Scouting award, the Silver Tiger Award of Bangladesh Scouts,given to any world personality from Bangladesh in 1994. He was also awarded the highest Scouting award, the Silver Elephant of The Bharat Scouts and Guides of India, in 1998.
In 1987 he wrote the 'Iqbal, Meeting Point of the East & West' lecture on Allama Iqbal which he delivered in the University of Heidelberg, Germany. He had received the Allama Iqbal Centenary Gold Medal for his works and articles about Allama Iqbal in 1979.
Syed Ghous Ali Shah went to London in October 2001 for medical treatment. He returned to Pakistan on 17 August 2008
Syed Ghous Ali Shah has six children: Shabir Hyder Shah,Dr. Ali Hyder Shah, Amir Hyder Shah (Late) & Syed Mohammad Safdar Hyder Shah alias Farhan Shah. He also has 2 daughters who are married.