Friday Nov 27, 2020
KARACHI: The eldest daughter of former president Asif Ali Zardari, Bakhtawar Bhutto-Zardari, and her fiancé Mahmood Choudhry exchanged the rings as the city's bigwigs — including business magnates, politicians, and lawyers — turned up at the engagement ceremony here at the Bilawal House.
Both Bakhtawar Bhutto-Zardari and Mahmood Choudhry wore traditional oriental attires.
The ceremony was held in the open area of Bilawal House Karachi but without the presence of PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto, her brother who is quarantined after testing positive for the coronavirus.
Sources informed Geo News that there were more than a dozen family members of Mahmood Choudhry at the event, with some Pakistani business tycoons among the more than 100 guests as well.
Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari virtually attended his sister's engagement ceremony as he was in quarantine. Bakhtawar's sister, Aseefa, introduced the PPP boss to the guests via video call.
Bilawal thanked the guests individually through the video call, while Asif Zardari continued meeting guests and receive congratulations from them at the event.
At least 100-150 guests were present at Bakhtawar's engagement ceremony, with Zardari, her father, also in attendance.
The late Benazir Bhutto's sister and Bakhtawar's aunt, Sanam Bhutto, Zardari's sister Faryal Talpur, Sindh Health Minister Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, PPP Senator Sherry Rehman, and Omni Group Chief Executive Anwar Majeed and his son, A.G. Majeed, were at the event, the sources added.
Also among the guests were business tycoon Riaz Laljee, former adviser to the prime minister and chief of the Ziauddin Group of Hospitals, Dr Asim Hussain, and former law minister and Zardari's legal counsel, Farooq H. Naek, the sources added.
Foreign guests, who had arrived from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), were also in attendance, the sources said.
The former president reached the venue from the hospitals after his doctors gave the go-ahead.
Guests were treated to Pakistani and English food, such as koftay [meatballs], biryani, chicken broast, and fish, the sources said, adding that special meals were prepared for kids.
Earlier today, Bakhtawar — the eldest daughter of Zardari and late ex-premier Benazir Bhutto — had thanked people for their "love & prayers", saying she would "be able to celebrate in a post-Covid world".
"Very sentimental & emotional day," said Bakhtawar on Twitter. "So grateful for everyone’s love & prayers. Especially our PPP family who, I know, are eager to participate."
However, her father and PPP co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari only attended the engagement ceremony for a short duration due to his health condition, sources had revealed a day prior. Zardari had to be shifted to a private hospital in Karachi on November 22 after he fell ill once again.
A few days ago, Bakhtawar had clarified that the videos and clips shared on the Internet purportedly from her engagement celebrations were "not my videos nor have anything to do with me".
The former president's daughter was upset at social media users for recklessly sharing videos without any verifying them first.
Bakhtawar Bhutto-Zardari's fiance-to-be, Mahmood Choudhry, reportedly arrived in Karachi on Thursday alongside his family, sources had informed Geo News.
A group of employees of the Bilawal House Karachi were selected to entertain Choudhry's family, the sources had said. They also mentioned that samples of the staffers and the security personnel were taken for their coronavirus tests after an aide of the PPP chairperson contracted COVID-19.