KARACHI: A former labour leader, who had been staging a hunger strike unto death outside the Karachi Press Club since November 1 demanding an extension in the tenure of former army chief Raheel Sharif, died at the Aga Khan University Hospital on Wednesday evening after he poisoned himself when the new COAS was appointed.
Lutf-e-Amimi Shibli drank a bottle of insecticide on Monday morning. He was first taken to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre and later to the Aga Khan Hospital.
Ahmed Mamoor Amimi, Shibli’s son, told The News that his father was a man of his words unlike politicians and killed
himself when the former chief of army staff was not given an extension in tenure by the government.
Amimi said his mother also gunned down in Karachi a few years back by unidentified assailants.
He added that family came to know about his suicide through a letter found in his pocket in which he had informed his wife that it was his last letter and he was dead serious about killing himself if Raheel Sharif was not given an extension.
He wrote the letter on the Monday morning, two days after the new army chief was announced.
“There is still time. If the whole nation takes to the streets, the government would be compelled to review its decision,” Shibli wrote in his letter. He also wrote that people like Raheel Sharif were born once in centuries.
Shibli thanked the members and employees of the Karachi Press Club for taking care of him and asked them to offer his funeral prayer outside the KPC on the main road. Amimi said his father supported labourers but he liked Raheel Sharif because the former army chief had taken action against terrorist and target killers.
Karachi Press Club Secretary AH Khanzada expressed sorrow over Shibli’s demise. He added that Shibli had raised his voice for the rights of labourers and downtrodden people his entire life but in his last days, he had started a struggle which was very strange for many of his colleagues and admirers.
“Despite having a clear difference of opinion with him, the press club supported Shibli in conveying his voice to the rulers and facilitated him in waging a hunger strike and also gave him access to the KPC’s facilities,” he added.
Khanzada said when Shibli’s condition deteriorated on Monday, he was immediately rushed to the Jinnah hospital. Amimi said to honour Shibli’s last wish, his funeral prayer would be offered in front of the press club after Zohr prayers today.
—Originally published in The News