MQM leader Fakhrul Islam shot dead in Pakistan

A Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader, who was a candidate for Pakistan's upcoming polls, was shot dead by unidentified gunmen in southern Sindh province today, police said.

Two gunmen, who were riding a motorcycle, shot at Fakhrul Islam outside his home in Halanaka area of Hyderabad city this afternoon. Islam was hit by several bullets and died instantly, police officials said. The gunmen escaped after the attack. No group claimed responsibility for the killing.

Islam had filed nomination papers to contest polls to both the Sindh Assembly and the National Assembly or lower house of parliament. Pakistan will go to the polls on May 11, marking the first democratic transition of power in the country's history.

Islam was one of the longest serving members of the MQM and was elected to the provincial assembly twice in the 90s.

MQM leader, Wasay Jalil termed the incident as tragic and an attempt to scare the MQM candidates from taking active part in the forthcoming general elections.

Besides the MQM which is the single largest party in Pakistan's biggest city and has dominated national assembly and provincial assembly elections in Karachi since the early 90s other parties have also received threats from the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan ahead of the elections.

But, Jalil said that the MQM had decided to public gatherings and rallies in order to counter threats from militants.

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