Ali Raza Abidi was shot multiple times by motorcycle-borne gunmen outside his residence in southern port city, officials say, sparking widespread condemnation.

Ali Raza Abidi received four bullets in his neck and chest and was immediately shifted to a nearby hospital, where he succumbed to his wounds.
Ali Raza Abidi received four bullets in his neck and chest and was immediately shifted to a nearby hospital, where he succumbed to his wounds. (Twitter/ @NaPoha_)

Unidentified gunmen on Tuesday shot dead a former Pakistani lawmaker in southern port city of Karachi, police and local media reported, in a fresh case of political violence.

Ali Raza Abidi, who had been elected twice as a member of the lower house –– the National Assembly –– from Karachi in 2008 and 2013 was shot multiple times by motorcycle-borne gunmen outside his residence in a high-end locality.

Abidi received four bullets in his neck and chest and was immediately shifted to a nearby hospital, where he succumbed to his wounds, Javed Alam Odho, a city police chief told media.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, whose CCTV footage went viral on social media.

"The attackers were expert in target killings," Raja Umar Khattab, a senior official of counter-terrorism department, told Dawn, adding the assailants had been closely following Abidi's car. 

Abidi recently quit MQM 

Abidi had lost to Prime Minister Imran Khan in the July general elections from a Karachi constituency on the ticket of Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) – a linguistic party, which represents the Urdu-speaking Mohajir community that had migrated from India at the time of partition in 1947.

His father, Ikhlaq Ahmad Abidi, was also elected as a National Assembly member from Karachi in 2006 on MQM's ticket.

The slain lawmaker recently quit the MQM following a major split in the party.

Previous killings 

Two activists of Pak Sarzameen party –– a splinter faction of the MQM –– were killed and another two wounded in an armed attack on a party office last Sunday.

Once enjoying a strong influence in urban parts of Sindh province, MQM conceded a heavy defeat at the hands of Prime Minister Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in the July elections, mainly in Karachi.

The party has also been accused of operating like an organised gang through its alleged use of violence and intimidation.

MQM's downfall 

A security crackdown launched in 2013 against militants and gangs in the commercial capital affected MQM with hundreds of workers arrested for their alleged involvement in the targeted killings of political opponents and security forces, extortion and other crimes in recent years.

The party leaders parted ways with founder Altaf Hussain, who lives in exile in London, following his anti-Pakistan speeches by phone in August last year.

Source: AA