From a Tea Boy to a Business Tycoon: How did Malik Riaz become an untouchable billionaire? [VIDEO]
senior Pakistani journalist Azaz Syed has revealed some unknown facts about Malik Riaz.
Malik Riaz Hussain is unarguably the most powerful person of Pakistan. He is the founder of Bahria Town, the largest privately held real estate development company in the country as well as in Asia. But the question is, how did the business tycoon became so rich and powerful?
Well, senior Pakistani journalist Azaz Syed has revealed some unknown facts about Malik Riaz. So, who exactly is Malik Riaz Hussain? According to Azaz Syed, the business tycoon was a tea boy at one point in his life.
“This was back in the late 60s and early 70s. His date of birth in the official papers is February 1954. He belongs to Sambrial (a city in Sialkot). His father passed away during his childhood, and after the passing of his father, he worked as a tea boy to bear the expenses of his family,” revealed Azaz syed.
The journalist added: ” A man named Malik Yunus, resident of jail Road Lahore, belonged to a very influential family. He used to hold parties and horse races for the rich and influential people of the time. And Malik Riaz used to work there as a tea boy. The leader of Pakistan People’s Party at the time, Malik Baraj Khalid, used to be a regular visitor of this place as well as Seth Abid (Who is a big name in the world of smuggling). These two were also very close friends.”
The senior journalist also revealed how Malik Riaz became a contractor.
“When his mother remarried, her second husband, Malik Riaz’s stepfather, his name was Malik Ashiq and he used to be a contractor for MES and CDA. If you look closely, Malik Riaz inherited this career of contractorship from his stepfather,” he said.
In the beginning, Malik Riaz started as an independent contractor and did some small project. Later, he was awarded contract by MES and the military.
Regarding his military connections, Azaz syed revealed: “His sister got married to an army major, who was the coursemate of the Army Chief of the time, Gen Aslam Baig. Through that link, he built connections with Gen Aslam Baig. Lt. Gen Rafaqat, who was the Chief of General Staff of Gen Aslam Baig, belonged to Sambrial (Malik Riaz’s hometown.) So, he was able to build that connection too, and got contract work with MES.”
How Malik Riaz entered the real estate business?
In the early 1990s, Malik Riaz turned his attention towards real estate business. This was the time he decided to create his own housing society.
“He wanted to create such a company whose name will attract people to make purchases. Pakistani forces and their name attract the public a lot and they feel that they associate credibility with them, which is why in 1996, Malik Riaz forwarded a request stating that he wishes to start a company by the name of ‘Bahria Town’.”
“Now obviously, it had the name of Pakistan Bahria (Navy) name attached to it, and at that time Admiral Mansoor was leading Pakistan Bahria (Navy). This is the same Admiral Mansoor who was later extradited from abroad and sent to Pakistan on the charges of corruption.”
“When Malik Riaz forwarded the request to use the name ‘Bahria Town’ for his newfound company, Admiral Mansoor did not have much objection over it. However, he still feared that somebody else might raise objections in the future. Then, Malik Meraj Khalid gave Malik Riaz the rights to use Bahria Town’s name through an ordinance.”
“The People’s Party’ government had ended and Malik Meraj Khalid was the Prime Minister at the time. As I have mentioned before, Malik Riaz was acquainted with Malik Meraj Khalid during the time that he worked at Malik Yunus’ house. Another interesting aspect to this is that Malik Riaz Hussain married into the same family he worked for at Jail Road. He had kids but a few years later his wife passed away. Then in 1996, when he officially got the name of ‘Bahria Town’, he started a project called Safari Villas for which he constructed beautiful houses which were sold overnight.”
Malik Riaz’s influence in power corridors:
According to the senior journalist, during the expansion of Bahria Town many people alleged that their lands have illegally been occupied. Regarding his political connections, Azaz Syed revealed that it was Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz’s leader Chaudhry Tanvir who was the business tycoon’s first political ally.
“Later, Taji Khokhar, a big underworld mafia don of Rawalpindi/Islamabad, who passed away recently, also extended his support to Malik Riaz, hence, enabling him to expand his real estate business. Many people have filed complaints against Malik Riaz in NAB and at other places. Many complaints against Bahria Town Karachi were also filed in NAB Karachi as well as at the Rawalpindi office. However, no such case has ever been taken under investigation nor have there been any arrests against him. The main reason for it, according to many people, is that he knows the art of neutralising the cases against him.”
Malik Riaz’s influence on Pakistan’s Politics:
The business tycoon’s influence in the Pakistani politics is such that he has a role in the appointment on important positions.
“We have proof to claim that at least two NAB Chairmans have been appointed with Malik Riaz’s influence. The first one being Admiral Retd Fasih Bokhari, Malik Riaz had a huge role to play in his appointment, and the second one being Justice Retd Javed Iqbal, who is supposedly the caretaker of accountability for the whole country. His appointment also had great involvement from Malik Riaz.”
Watch the video:
Recently, Malik Riaz Hussain and his son’s visas were revoked by the UK’s government but the news hardly got any coverage on the Pakistani media, which speaks volumes of his influence. Furthermore, the business tycoon surrendering his £50 million London home is also considered the ‘largest asset recovery settlement ever’.
What are your views on this? Share in the comments bar below.