Imran Farooq stabbed to death

Published: September 17, 2010
MQM Secretary-General Imran Farooq (L) laughs with party founder Altaf Hussain (R) during his press conference in London, Sept 1999. PHOTO: AFP

MQM Secretary-General Imran Farooq (L) laughs with party founder Altaf Hussain (R) during his press conference in London, Sept 1999. PHOTO: AFP

MQM Secretary-General Imran Farooq (L) laughs with party founder Altaf Hussain (R) during his press conference in London, Sept 1999. PHOTO: AFP Convener of MQM Rabita committee killed in London; 10-day mourning announced

What was supposed to be the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM)’s most celebrated day, turned out to be a day of shock and mourning.

Senior leader of the Muttahida Qaumi (MQM) Movement, and Convener of the party’s Rabita Committee, Dr Imran Farooq was murdered in a knife attack in the Edgware district of London late on Thursday night.

The details of the incident were not immediately clear – he was reportedly taken in injured condition to the hospital, where doctors confirmed his death. Reports suggested that he was attacked while entering his apartment building in London, and that the incident could have been an attempted mugging. MQM sources said that they are in touch with the London police and are still gathering details.

An emergency sitting of the MQM Rabita Committee had been called late in the night simultaneously in London in Karachi, following which senior leaders of the MQM, including Farooq Sattar, visited Imran Farooq’s residence in Karachi to express solidarity and comfort his family. Emotional scenes were witnessed at the slain leader’s house, with his parents and party associates unwilling to control their grief. Doctor Imran Farooq was also the only person to hold the post of Convener of the MQM Rabita Committee since the party’s inception.

All celebrations for MQM chief Altaf Hussain’s birthday, which were already under way, were cancelled. MQM activists that had gathered at the party headquarters, Nine-Zero, were asked to return home.

Farooq was a pioneering leader of the MQM, and had been a part of it since it was a student body by the name of the All Pakistan Muhajir Students Organisation (APMSO). He was MQM chief Altaf Hussain’s closest confidant, and handled the party’s affairs in the country after Hussain went into exile, as well as during the 1992 operation by security forces in Karachi against the MQM. It was at this time that Dr Imran Farooq also went into hiding to resurface in London in 1999, where he  had been residing since. He married in 2004.

According to reports, the body will be brought back to Karachi for burial.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: September 17, 2010

An earlier version of this article misstated the APMSO as APSMO. Also, near Edgeware road has been changed to Edgeware district.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 17th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (61)

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 4:10AM

    oh no… :( is bed news for all Pakistani he is was great man Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 4:17AM

    Condemnable!! Could only say this: There is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft….When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal his wife’s right to a husband, rob his children of a father.Recommend

  • A. Khan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:21AM

    Really a sad news and unbearable loss. May Allah Rest Imran Farooq’s Soul in peace and give his family strength to face this great loss. AmeenRecommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 4:30AM


    He had a two year old son. My heart goes out for his wife and kid.

    Hopeful that culprit will be caught soon. Recommend

    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:54AM

    Sad. And he thought he was safer in London.Recommend

  • Ghazanfar Sultan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 6:36AM

    It is really a sorrowful moment not only for MQM and Altaf Hussain, but also for all his lovers and Haq Parast Awaam.Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 7:33AM

    Shocking, poignant and very bitter. He was a very close confidante of Altaf Hussain and orgaizer of the MQM.

    He had the staying power of loyalty and stuck to the party through its bad times. This is indeed a very sad piece of news.

    He was a formidable opponent in the cryptic quagmire of Pakistani politics. Candidly this blogger wishes he had not read this news early in the morning.

    May ALLMIGHTY ALLAH give patience and forbearance to the family and the party and rest his soul in Jannatul Firdous. Ameen.

    Salams to all. Recommend

  • dodo
    Sep 17, 2010 - 8:04AM

    its APMSO not APSMO. Kindly proof-read your articles before publishing them on the web.Recommend

  • Aftab Kenneth Wilson
    Sep 17, 2010 - 8:29AM

    Very sad news. A very soft spoken leader and founding members of the party. My heart goes with the family members and the party on this sad demise, may his soul rest in peace, Amen.Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 8:50AM

    This time Dawn’s report is comprehensive and expressive.Recommend

  • imran
    Sep 17, 2010 - 9:04AM

    @ absar……..lad what about those ,on the roads of karachi ,who became the target of his brutality and beastness…….he destroys thousand houses led hundreds of women to the widow,dozens of childrens to orphan confiscated the bliss and joys of lacs of people…..he worth that death…….. Recommend

  • Ali
    Sep 17, 2010 - 9:07AM

    Sad News

    May his soul rest in peace in heaven. Recommend

  • Syed A. Mateen
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:04AM

    May Al-Mighty Allah rest his soul in peace. Ameen.

    After the murder of Shahnawaz Bhutto in France, this is the second murder of a public figure in a foreign country.

    The knife culture of Britain has finally taken one more live and this time of a political leader and public figure of Pakistan.

    Cameras are installed all over the London. Murderers cannot escape and will be arrested by the Police sooner or later.

    It is sad news not only for MQM but for all political leaders that life of a Pakistani is not even safe in a foreign country.

    I hope that Scotland Yard Police will soon be able to nab the killer(s) and will bring them to justice.

    Since MQM is a coalition partner of the present Government, the murder of Mr. Imran Farooq should be taken up with the British Government at the level of Government of Pakistan.

    The case should be pursued until the last to determine the fact as what were the reasons that Mr. Imran Farooq was killed in London and by whom? What was the intention of the murderers for killing Imran Farooq in London? Recommend

    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:37AM

    It is total brutality,the British must bring forward the killer,as people used to run to UK, being safe.
    very very sad. Recommend

  • aaa
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:38AM

    The information about the location of the attack in the article is incorrect. It should read Green Lane, Edgware not Edgware Road (which is located in a completely different part of London). Kindly check the reports of the incident in the British press (BBC, Telegraph etc.)Recommend

  • Zia
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:48AM

    Imran Farooq has been suspended four times from the coordination committee of MQM and lastly his entry was banned in MQM’s International Secretariat London. Recommend

  • ariba
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:52AM

    dr imran farooq’s loss is definitely an unbearable one for not only mqm but all pakistanis.he was a loyalist and one of the most peacefull figure in the political history of pakistan.we are with mqm in this time of grief.i assure my full support for mqm and his family! killers should watch out as they won’t be spared for this horrendous act. i appeal to thescotland yard and pakistan govt to see to it that the coward murderers get arrested and be punished severely..Recommend

  • Asmat Jamal
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:57AM

    Imran farooq was the founding member of MQM but had become disfunctional politically for some time due to his differences with the Party higher ups. As reported by the press, he was now trying to lead private life with his wife and child.
    There is one rule and one pledge which all MAFIAs of the world follow “Its a one way Ticket”. You join at your will but you have no right to quit because you become privy to too sensitive material.
    Probably Imran Farooq made this fatal mistake.Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 11:03AM

    A silent murder is asking many questions!!!!Recommend

  • Kashif Hasan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 11:13AM

    Imran Farooq was a founder member of MQM and its theory, he had a huge political background, so it is difficult to accept that his assassination is simply result of an attempted mugging. May Allah rest his soul.Recommend

  • sultan, Abbottaabad
    Sep 17, 2010 - 12:02PM

    Very very sad, my heart goes for his family. A two years old son who is going to live his whole life without a father’s love. His father is a very brave man and a good Muslim who says ‘Al hamdo lillah’ and that it was Allah’s will. We are with the family and MQM in this hour of grief.Recommend

  • DON
    Sep 17, 2010 - 12:09PM

    Totally agree with ‘aaa’. Edgeware road is very far from Edgeware the area itself. Also he was pronounced dead at the scene! They didn’t take him to the hospital.Recommend

  • ali hamdani
    Sep 17, 2010 - 12:15PM

    Tragic, enemies of Pakistan such as Taliban attack great leaders of Pakistan to prevent nation from being successful and peaceful! Recommend

  • Danish
    Sep 17, 2010 - 1:17PM

    Very very sadRecommend

  • watchdog from UK
    Sep 17, 2010 - 1:53PM

    ‘Imran Farooq has been suspended four times from the coordination committee of MQM and lastly his entry was banned in MQM’s International Secretariat London.’

    I am not sure why Altaf Hussain was being hysterical as seen on ‘exclusive’ video footages being flashed on subservient Pakistani TV channels. As Zia has mentioned in his comment above, Imran Farooq was suspended………

    In fact Mr Farooq was persona non grata for the MQM international secretariat.

    Imran Farooq knew ins and outs of the International secretariat. He was allegedly trying to form his own party as well.Recommend

  • Raza
    Sep 17, 2010 - 3:12PM

    its SAD we people of karachi lost our another brother after Azeem Ahmed Tariq, During 1992 to 2001 Operation, once govt launch prize money of 50 lacs on his head (Dead or alive), i think now Powerfull stablishment of Talbanized Pakistan act on his previous stance. and convey “halt” mssage to Altaf Hussain.(same forces are involved who murdered Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan) – Pakistan Zindabad. – Plz Recite Fateha for the great soul.Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 3:23PM

    The elements behind the murder of Dr. Farooq are the same who murdered azeem Tariq way back in 1992. Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 3:36PM

    Imran Farooq’s murder is the message given to Altaf Hussain against his extraordinary demands of revolution and change in Pakistan. Recommend

  • Immy
    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:15PM


    “Imran Farooq has been suspended four times from the coordination committee of MQM and lastly his entry was banned in MQM’s International Secretariat London”.
    They say, you can leave MQM, MQM would not leave.Recommend

  • Farhan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:17PM

    Very sad news. As a Pakistani i feel sorry for this loss to my nation – a nation struggling for true democracy.Recommend

  • Zeeshan Khan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:21PM

    The Murder of such a high value political personality is repairable loss for MQM, which never fills ever. Dr. Imran Farooq was among those founder members of APMSO which later drives as MQM who started this movement from the grass root level, he was a real MUJAHID and never forgot his categorical contribution in respect of organic evaluation of this movement. We can not assume mugging this incident due to current political instability in Pakistan and we wish Scotland Yard shortly will be able to produce facts behind this silent murder and bring them to Justice who are behind the scene Recommend

  • Immy
    Sep 17, 2010 - 4:45PM

    Watchdog UK…110% agree with you….am surprised to read comments that it could be an act of Talibans or talibanized people…how blind they are..they cant challenge their leader so they are adopting their leader’s policy of blame shifting, better they should also do some cosmatic of crocodile tears to their comments like Bhai to make the drama a success.Recommend

  • Schazad
    Sep 17, 2010 - 5:27PM

    My condolences with the family but do we talk about so many lives ruined because of these politicians and we like stupids follow them and kill each other. What about families of those people whose businesses have been burnt and wives and kids of those men who are killed in cross fire or target killing. I am sure nothing will happen to his family. They are living in London with businesses in UAE and I am sure in Pakistan too. We should be more concerned about the poor people’s families who has no businesses or people to take care of and then we complain about y there are so many beggars in the cities.

    Y are the buses being burnt in Pakistan and businesses, markets, schools and offices being closed in Karachi and hyderabad. Enough of the stupidity already.Recommend

  • Ricky
    Sep 17, 2010 - 5:58PM

    Really Sad and a great loss for Pakistan, Karachi, Sindh and MQMRecommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 6:37PM

    He was such a brilliant man and a role model of loyalty & dedication for political workers. His assassination is really condemnable!Recommend

  • watchdog from UK
    Sep 17, 2010 - 7:28PM

    Imran Farooq’s father was heard as saying that the telephones belonging to the deceased person are in possession of the Scotland Yard. I am not sure whether International Secretariat’s communication channels have been possessed by the Yard.

    On a British TV channel there were reports that the murder may have been ‘politically motivated’.Recommend

  • Aasia Sohail Mian
    Sep 17, 2010 - 8:12PM

    The murder of Dr.Imran Farooq is irreparable loss. God may rest his soul in peace and give patience to his family.Recommend

  • Ricky
    Sep 17, 2010 - 8:25PM

    The murder of Dr Imran Farooq might be an act of Taleban and Al-Qaeda’s involvement as we are getting reports from Pakistani Intelligence outlets here in LondonRecommend

  • Sep 17, 2010 - 8:27PM

    He is not was not in MQM
    check this…

  • Kashan
    Sep 17, 2010 - 10:50PM

    Imran Farooq was livin a life of recluse since 2004 & since 2006 he held no official chair in da party (chk dawn’s breaking news). MQM’s official website doesn’t define a position of “convener” in thr hierarchy…thrz only party chief i.e. Altaf Hussain and thn deputy convener i.e. “Farooq Sattar”..IIt is also said tht he escaped 3 murder attempts in his exile,,2 in south africa n one in spain between 1992 to 1999 the year he shown up 1st tym in his exile..the haqeeqi ppl hav alwys had soft corner 4 him as he was a strong advocate of muhajir many aspects he was the actual founder of MQM and its political/practical ideology e.g. establishment of APMSORecommend

  • watchdog from UK
    Sep 17, 2010 - 11:44PM

    I do not know why MQM continue to address Imran Farooq as a leader of MQM when he was a dissident in his part and was expelled after getting warnings from MQM supremo as seen in a report published in the Dawn of Karachi. The link is provided by salman.

    Now Scotland Yard is believed to have stepped in.
    The murder is considered to be political assassination.

    Next 24 hours to 48 hours are crucial. The wife of the deceased has yet to say anything. No one is being allowed to communicate with her according to the Metropolitan Police.Recommend

  • B.Khan
    Sep 18, 2010 - 12:44AM

    A Very interesting fact about this murder is that the area in which Dr.Imran Farooq use to live and got murdered , is thickly populated by Jews, There is all Jewish population in that area living for so many years peacefully, and they said , its shocking that they haven’t seen any murder attempt in this particular area in the last 35 years.

    In-fact the other crimes rate of this particular area is very very low in comparison of whole London.

    I don’t understand who could be the beneficiary of this murder. Recommend

  • Anonymous
    Sep 18, 2010 - 1:02AM

    He was an active and brave son of Karachi who announced his fight with the feudal system of country. All alone!@Recommend

  • Syed Asim Ali
    Sep 18, 2010 - 2:04AM

    i think its a great loss of karachi and the whole country may allah rest his soul in peace and give patience the whole family Recommend

  • Humanity
    Sep 18, 2010 - 3:59AM

    @Tanzeel “Imran Farooq’s murder is the message given to Altaf Hussain against his extraordinary demands of revolution and change in Pakistan.”

    Wow! I am dumb folded at the logic. What a way to give a message to prevent a revolution ..

    I am a supporter of any of the political parties in Pakistanis, each standing knee deep in innocent blood.

    Pakistanis must start to condemn violence unconditionally, if they want to get out of this quagmire. They must stand up against state sponsored and mullah sponsored blood shed. Violence begets violence. If you want peace, then stand up for peace and do it with out violence please!

    Stop divisions of the various parties , A through Z. Start identifying your selves as Pakistanis rooting to re-create Jinnah’s Pakistan, based on his principles ..

    These are defining moments in the history of Pakistan. It will either be or cease to be. United, it will be, divided it will be no more. The choice is yours! Recommend

  • Dur muhammed
    Sep 18, 2010 - 5:31AM

    V. sad news for people of pakistan specialy living out of pakistan . Who is next? in or
    out contry. after the murder of MQM chair Azeem Ahmed Tarq , very big loss unaffordable.
    Good bless Karachi . Dr was founder 1987, Altaf hussain , Azeem Tariq , apmso, mqm,
    haq parest , MQM-lead Govts and Policy matters,command and control — 1992–

    Thousand people love a youngh man and million enemy . m million know to Him.
    Unfortunitly he was stabbe to death , he was alone no security, as ordery person.
    Silient——, there is something same — like the murder of MQM leader Azeem Ahmed Tariq
    God may rest his soul in peace and give patience to his family and all people Pakistan
    specialy sindh. Recommend

  • Sep 18, 2010 - 7:48AM

    Good to know, Recommend

  • Aristo
    Sep 18, 2010 - 11:36AM

    The tragedy that has befallen upon his immediate kin & kith is what really matters, it is a huge loss for them, a 180 degree turn in their lives that must have turned their world upside down. We will all forget about him in a day or two but his parents, wife and kids will have to live with this tragedy for all their lives. The rest is all meaningless. May God give them the strength and patience to proceed with their lives and grant peace & forgiveness to the soul of the murdered.Recommend

  • Asad Ghauri
    Sep 18, 2010 - 12:11PM

    May His Soul Rest in Peace!
    Its sad and grief news, but I am hopefull that Scotland Yard could come up with results, thanks to GOD that they dnt have Interior Minister like Zulfiqar MirzaRecommend

  • Dr. Habibullah Chaudhry
    Sep 18, 2010 - 1:01PM

    . Imran Farooq,s murder was the most barberic act.He was a thorough gentleman, a dedicated worker. A great loss to MQMRecommend

  • watchdog from UK
    Sep 18, 2010 - 5:55PM

    Daily Mail London report published today


    Farooq was a member of the Muttahida Quami Movement, one of Pakistan’s major parties and the largest in the coalition governing Karachi.

    The MQM is also an important member of the federal government in Islamabad. The killing could have implications for national political stability, especially if the MQM accuses its rivals of being involved.

    Local media reports said some vehicles were torched and shots fired late last night in the city of more than 16million, but police said today there had been no violence.

    The MQM is accused by critics and independent observers of being heavily involved in illegal activities and gangsterism in the city. Hundreds of its supporters have been killed over the last 20 years, including top leaders, in gang warfare in Karachi, including dozens this year alone.

    The MQM’s leader Altaf Hussain lives in self-imposed exile in London after leaving in 1992 amid an army operation against the party, which the generals had accused of criminal activities. According to the MQM’s website, Farooq left Pakistan the same year. Neither man returned to Pakistan since.

    Hussain regularly addresses large gatherings in Karachi via telephone link. In recent weeks, he appeared to suggest that the country’s army should rise up against the civilian government, angering his party’s federal coalition partners, including the ruling Pakistan People’s Party of President Asif Ali Zardari.

    The MQM represents mainly descendants of Urdu-speaking migrants from India who settled in Pakistan when it was created in 1947.

    It has spoken out against the Taliban and other religious extremists, but rivals accuse the MQM of doing this mostly because of its history of bias against Pashtuns – the major ethnic group that make up the Taliban. More than four million Pashtuns live in Karachi, and the MQM fears their rising influence.

    Read more:

  • Rahman Kidwai
    Sep 19, 2010 - 2:59AM

    Its a great loss of karachi and the whole country may Allah rest his soul in peace and give patience the whole family.

    Tribute to MQM’s Dr. Imran Farooq ( Shaheed-e-Inqilab ) Recommend

  • Ghazanfar Sultan
    Sep 19, 2010 - 2:39PM

    Yes, we trust that Scotland Yard will find the killer, and unreveal the story.Recommend

  • no one
    Sep 19, 2010 - 11:08PM

    i only said death may allah bless hhis family and may give him sabar
    and i pray that allah give peace and soul to dr.
    imran farooqRecommend

  • M.Khan
    Sep 29, 2010 - 9:35AM

    The assassination of Dr. Imran Farooq was a heinous crime committed by those trying to destabilize MQM and provoke violence in Pakistan. Before jumping to conclusions and playing the blame game, it is critical that we wait for the results of the investigations being carried out by the Scotland Yard. As of now, the Scotland Yard has not made a conclusive decision, but rumors are abound. Please use logic and reason when you analyse news.Recommend

  • Pak_Truth
    Sep 29, 2010 - 9:45AM

    Mushraf should come forward and tell the truth.
    I think this is a plot against MQM (Altaf Hussain).Recommend

  • Asmat Jamal
    Oct 4, 2010 - 11:05AM

    Some interesting and alarming facts:

    When MQM initially won the elections in late 80s and early nineties, this was MQM’s top leadership:

    Chairman: Azeem Tarique

    V. Chairman: Bader Iqbal

    Secretary General: Imram Farooq

    Deputy Sec general: Khalid Bin Waleed

    Finance Secretary: SM Tariq

    Mayor Of Karachi: Farooq Sattar (last-one alive)

    Deputy Mayor : Raziq Khan

    First 2 senators : Nishat Malick and ???

    It is so regrettable and unfortunate that all these top leaders of MQM are dead now and all have been assassinated except Farooq Sattar.

    It is also on record that all these leaders either left MQM (Badr Iqbal, SM Tariq, Imran Farooq, Razik Khan) or raised differences with Altaf Hussain ( Azeem Tariq, Khalid Bin Waleed, Nishat Malick) before their death

    MQM is in power for 23 years in Sind and Pakistan’s federal cabinet, including ministry of defense and law in Sind for 8 years. The most surprising part is that they have never ever tried to catch or even seriously demanded the capture of culprits who wiped off the entire leadership of MQM in last 20 years??? Recommend

  • Bushra Rehman
    Oct 5, 2010 - 6:53PM

    One thing is for sure, this brutal murder has divided the nation into two sections. We can easily identify those who love humanity and condemn brutalities and the others who show their racist colors in all situations. Imran Farooq was not only a leader, a politician a good human being but also a true patriotic Pakistani. Rest in Peace. Ameen.Recommend

  • Tanvir
    Oct 6, 2010 - 8:47AM

    May His Soul Rest in Peace!
    Its sad and grief news, but I am hopefull that Scotland Yard could come up with results.
    Sad news for people of pakistan specialy living out of Pakistan. After the murder of Dr.Imran Farooq, very big loss unaffordable.Recommend

  • Tanvir
    Oct 6, 2010 - 9:00AM

    Imran Farooq,s murder was the most barberic act.He was a gentleman, a dedicated worker. A great loss to MQMRecommend

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