Funeral prayer of Pakistan hockey team player Shahida Raza being offered in Quetta: Photo provided by Talib Hussain Hazara

Manan Mandokhail,Syed Muhammad Qaseem:


Shahida Raza, the Pakistan hockey team player was laid to rest in the Behesht Zainab graveyard on Friday morning. Shahida was one of the 63 ill-fated illegal immigrants who died when a boat drowned in Italy in February this year. She has left a four-year-old disabled child, family sources told Daily Quetta Voice. Shahida was very concerned about her disabled child, they said.

The dead body of Shahida was brought from Karachi to Quetta by road in the wee hours of Friday since the flight was canceled because of bad weather conditions. “Extremely painful”, Abdul Khaliq Hazara, the Balochistan Sports Minister said after offering her funeral prayer.

Shahida Raza was in search of a better future when the tragedy struck

Dead body of Shahida Raza brought to Behesht Zainab graveyard: Photo Talib Hussain Hazara

The 27-year-old Shahida Raza was a national hockey team player and left for Europe in search of the best future because of inflation, poverty, and unemployment in Pakistan. “This is an eye opener for the policymakers”, Khaliq Hazara said.

The family suffered through dumb agony as they waited for more than twenty days after hearing the sad news of the drowning in the boat near Italy. “That news was a doomsday for our family”, Talib Hussain Hazara, one of the young relatives of Shahida Raza said with a burst of tears.

A large number of ethnic Shia Hazara attended the funeral

A large number of members of the ethnic Shia Hazara community participated in the funeral prayer of the national hockey team player. Heartbreaking scenes were witnessed when the dead body of Shahida was brought to her Marriabad residence.

During the last two decades, scores of ethnic Shia Hazara have left Quetta and gone to Australia and other countries because of repeated bomb explosions and targeted killings. The minority Hazara community has been repeatedly targeted in Quetta.

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Quetta Voice is an English Daily covering all unfolding political, economic and social issues relating to Balochistan, Pakistan's largest province in terms of area. QV's main focus is on stories related to education, promotion of quality education and publishing reports about out of school children in the province. QV has also a vigilant eye on health, climate change and other key sectors.