He was born to Nawab Mehrab Khan Bugti in Barkhan on July 12, 1927. The late Nawab was a member of the Shah Jirga and voted for the creation of Pakistan in 1947. He became a member of the Constituent Assembly and served as the Minister of State for Interior and Defence in the 1958.
In 1962 he became a supporter of the National Awami Party (NAP) and supported Nawab Khair Bakhsh Marri as a candidate for the National Assembly from Quetta Division and Sardar Ataullah Mengal from Kalat Division. Both of them were elected with comprehensive majority, defeating Field Marshal Ayub Khan’s Conventional Muslims League.
When Ayub Khan addressed a public meeting at Mali Bagh in Quetta, the NAP held a public meeting the next day, which offended the field martial. Bugti was arrested and remained in jail until mid 1960s, after a very long hunger strike.
Nawab Bugti was also part of the political movement against the notorious One Unit. The movement ultimately forced Gen Yahya Khan to restore the federating units on July 1, 1970, six months before the 1970 general elections.
Bugti later developed differences with the NAP leadership and his old political associates like Mir Ghous Bakhsh Bizenjo, Nawab Khair Bakhsh Marri and Sardar Ataullah Mengal, and joined hands with Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. The tribal leader became the governor of Balochistan in February 1973, soon after the dismissal of Sardar Attaullah Mengal’s first elected provincial government. He resigned on December 31, 1973.
In the same year, his son late Saleem Bugti contested the by-election on the National Assembly seat vacated by Nawab Marri, but lost to Mir Taj Mohammad Jamali.
He became the chief minister of the province on February 4, 1989, representing the Balochistan National Alliance.
For the 1990 General Elections, Bugti formed his own political party, the Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP). A large number of settlers joined the party and tickets were given out liberally, even to non-Balochs. Bugti was elected to the provincial assembly. In 1993, Nawab Akbar Bugti was elected to the National Assembly representing the JWP.
Clashes between government forces and the Bugti tribesmen began last year after rocket attacks on Sui gas installations, presumably by the Bugti tribe. Two days ago, a government-sponsored Jirga held in Dera Bugti banned Sardari system in the area once ruled by Nawab Bugti.