Karachi, June 23 (IANS) Thousands of fans and followers on Thursday attended the funeral prayers for famed qawwali singer Amjad Sabri, who was gunned down on Wednesday by unidentified assailants.
Sabri was laid to rest amid tears next to his father Ghulam Farid Sabri, in the compound of Pir Herat Shah Warsi’s shrine.
Pakistan Rangers and police guarded the route of the funeral procession. Shops along the route remained closed.
Earlier on Thursday, the grieving family received Sabri’s body from the Chhipa morgue and took it to their Liaquatabad residence.
His mother, speaking to Geo News, said that Amjad Sabri was the most talented among her 11 children. “He would sometimes joke ‘I will move to Defence (locality for better protection)’. But when I said I wanted to stay here in this locality, he would tell me, ‘Then I can’t leave you”.”
Sabri’s uncle claimed that his nephew had been receiving threats for quite sometime now.
Vigils and prayers were organised across the country by his followers and fans.
Amjad Sabri was shot dead in Karachi’s Liaquatabad area on Wednesday. His murder drew condemnations from across the country and the Indian subcontinent, where he was popular.
Sabri was travelling with an associate when two gunmen on a motorcycle opened fire on the white Honda Civic car.
Following his ruthless killing, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif strongly condemned the terrorist attack.
Amjad Sabri, 45, was one of South Asia’s most popular singers of the qawwali — Sufi devotional music that dates back more than 700 years.
Violence is common in Karachi despite a sharp decline in murders and targeted killings since the military launched a crackdown two years ago against suspected militants and violent criminals.
In May, gunmen shot dead prominent Pakistani rights activist Khurram Zaki, known for his outspoken stance against the Taliban and other radical Islamist groups, in the central part of the city.