The convicted murderer of a former managing director of Karachi’s power utility was hanged till death at 4:30am amid stringent security measures as police and Frontier Corps personnel surrounded the prison. Mirza was sent to the gallows at around 4:25am and hanged 15 minutes later after a doctor examined him and declared him healthy, sources said. Dr Sajjad pronounced his death after which the body was handed over to his two nieces and a nephew.
Just before his execution, sources said, jail officials had handed over a pen and a paper to the convict to write his last words in the presence of Judicial Magistrate Hidayatullah. Mirza turned down the offer. The officials confirmed two messages were written by the convict the previous night which were handed over to his family. The details within were not revealed to the media.
Accompanied by 18 members of his family, Mirza’s body was first shifted from Mach to the Edhi morgue in Quetta and then flown to Karachi via a PIA cargo plane. In the evening, he was buried at the Shah Mohammad Shah graveyard in North Karachi near his mother’s grave.
No member or leader of the MQM was present at the funeral. Emotional scenes were witnessed at his house in Gulshan-e-Maymar where his family broke down into tears after seeing his body. One sister cried out: “We love you.” Another sister lamented they were not able to save him.
His weeping wife questioned why the government had halted his execution in the first place when they did not want to spare him. “Why did they give us hope when they did not want to save him?”
Mirza’s execution had been halted twice in the past couple of months after an explosive confessional video was leaked to the media hours before his planned execution on March 19. In the video, Mirza accused MQM chief Altaf Hussain of instructing him to carry out the killings.
A JIT was formed to investigate the claims, but on May 8 the Sindh High Court rejected his plea for a stay on his hanging, and upheld the decision to execute him on May 12 – the date coinciding with the notorious riots of 2007.
The MQM had distanced itself from Mirza with leaders such as Dr Farooq Sattar reiterating the party had no connection with him, as he was removed years ago.
A resident of North Nazimabad, Mirza joined the MQM as his elder brothers were also affiliated with it, and is said to have climbed its ranks very fast. He was said to be connected with the alleged militant wing of the party and was accused of many murders, including that of foreigners. Even inside the Karachi Central Jail since 1998, he was alleged of running his own network of criminals.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 13th, 2015.
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