Syed Shah Mardan Shah-II

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Pir Pagara
(Urdu: پیر پگارا‎)
(Sindhi: پير پاڳارو‎)
Former Member National Assembly of Pakistan
Personal details
Born (1928-11-22)22 November 1928
British Raj
Died 10 January 2012(2012-01-10) (aged 83)
London, UK
Citizenship Pakistani
Political party Pakistan Muslim League (F)
Residence Karachi
Alma mater University of Liverpool
Religion Islam

Syed Shah Mardan Shah-II widely known as Pir Pagara (Urdu: پیر پگارا‎, Sindhi: پير پاڳارو‎; 22 November 1928 – 10 January 2012) was the spiritual leader of Hurs and president of political party Pakistan Muslim League (F). He was commonly known in Pakistan as Pir Sahib Pagara and Pir Shaab. He was an influential figure in Pakistani politics and the leader of Hur Force in Pakistan who also participated in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. He was also a first-class cricketer.[1] He died on 10 January 2012 in London, due to liver infection.

Personal life[edit]

Pir Pagara is a title given to the leader of the Muslim Sufi order of Hurs in Sindh province of Pakistan. It comes from the Persian word "Pir" (elder or "saint") and the Sindhi word "Pagara", which means Chieftain's Turban. The Last Pir Pagara was Hazrat Pir Syed Mardan Shah II.[2] He was born in Pir Jo Goth, Sindh in 1928. Pir Pagara spent a major part of his life engaged in Pakistan's politics. His father Hazrat Pir Syed Sibghatullah Shah II was hanged on 20 March 1943 by the British colonial government during his struggle against British Colonial Rule. [3][4][5]

Political career[edit]

After the defeat of Mohtarma Fatima Jinnah by Ayub Khan in the presidential contest, Mohtarma declared the Muslim League functional and made Pir Pagaro the head of Muslim League. He was nominated as first president of United Muslim League as well. He was Chief of Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F), and spiritual leader of the ‘Hur’ jamaat. He was one of the most influential and respected political personalities of Pakistan.[6] His predictions on Pakistan's politics were sometimes quoted in the media.[7] He was usually visited by many senior politicians of Pakistan such as Sheikh Rasheed,[8] Chaudhry Shujaat,[9] Raza Haroon[10] and Shah Mehmood Qureshi.[11]


Usually referred to in cricket literature as the Pir of Pagaro, he was influential in the early years of Pakistan's cricket development in the 1950s. Before Pakistan's first tour of England in 1954 he had a grass pitch constructed in his garden so that the Pakistan players, who had to play most of their cricket at the time on matting pitches, could practise in something similar to English conditions.[12] He re-founded the Sind Cricket Association,[13] captained Sind in the first-ever match in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy in November 1953,[14] and organized and captained a team under his name against the MCC in 1955-56.[15]


Pir Pagara was admitted to Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH) on 24 November 2011, for treatment of infected lungs. According to doctors, he was in a very serious condition and was therefore put on a ventilator and flown to London on special air ambulance on 5 January, along with a physician and family members. [16] [17]

He died on 10 January 2012 of a liver infection. His body was returned to Pakistan on the following day. Many political parties in Pakistan, including the Hurs, sent their condolences to the family.[18][16][19][20][21] He was buried in his native Pir Jo Goth village alongside his ancestors.[22][23]

He was succeeded by his Son Syed Sibghatullah Shah Rashdi III both as the Pir Pagara and Leader of Pakistan Muslim League (F).[24][25]

See also[edit]

Preceded by
Sibghatullah Shah Rashidi
Pir Pagara
1943 – 2012
Succeeded by
Syed Sibghatullah Shah Rashdi III
Preceded by
Post Created
Leader of Pakistan Muslim League (F)
1985 – 2012
Succeeded by
Syed Sibghatullah Shah Rashdi III


External links[edit]