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Murder of Aziz Khan

Murder of Aziz Khan by Shaukat Siddiqui published in 1990, tells the mysterious story of a wealthy businessman from Lahore who is suddenly found dead. Police inspector Ghazan Khan is brought in to investigate but finds the case way more complex than expected. Siddiqui skillfully weaves a plot full of twists as Ghazan tries to sift through suspects and corrupt police forces to solve the murder.

For fans of crime novels with international flair, this one published in the late 20th century will keep you guessing til the very end.

Summary of the Murder of Aziz Khan 

The Murder of Aziz Khan by Shaukat Siddiqui is a gripping mystery novel set in 1980s Pakistan. Published in 1990, it follows police inspector Ghazan Khan as he investigates the strange death of wealthy businessman Aziz Khan.

At first, it seems like a simple case, but Ghazan soon discovers much corruption and collusion underneath the surface of Lahore society. Powerful enemies don’t want the crime solved. Through many shocking twists, as Ghazan digs deeper, Siddiqui weaves a complex portrait of a country in flux, with danger around every corner. Fans of detective thrillers with cultural insight will find this page-turner from the late 20th century engaging from start to finish.

Themes of the Murder of Aziz Khan 

Here are some key themes in Shaukat Siddiqui’s Murder of Aziz Khan:


Powerful forces want the case closed, exposing deeply rooted corruption plaguing Pakistan under Zia ul-Haq.

Class Divide

Aziz moves between high society and poverty, highlighting inequities in nascent capitalist systems.

Religious Radicalism

Radical madrassas gain influence under Zia, impacting the investigation.

Shifting Social Values

Women gain new freedoms but also become targets of “moral police,” reflecting turbulent transitions.

Political Instability

Zia’s dictatorship looms large, representing the repression that follows most military takeovers.


Lahore expands rapidly, linking crime to urban poverty and migration’s dislocations.

Criminal Underworld

Corrupt police are in cahoots with smugglers, showing criminality enabled by compromised establishments.

Family Honor

A woman’s plight highlights how tradition clashes with progress in shattering prior certainties.


In corruption’s shadow, the attainment of justice remains elusive despite Ghazan’s honourable efforts.

Through this crime saga, Siddiqui unpacked his nation’s complex realities during tumultuous post-partition decades.

Major characters  of the Murder of Aziz Khan

Here are analyses of the major characters in Murder of Aziz Khan:

Inspector Ghazan Khan

As the dedicated detective tasked with solving Aziz’s murder, Ghazan finds his morals tested amid webs of corruption. His shrewd intellect and humility show that justice can survive even systems built to oppose it. Ghazan comes to symbolize individual conscience fighting vast upheld injustice.

Aziz Khan

The murdered businessman remains an enigma, though past glimpses show philanthropic and opportunistic sides. Aziz’s world entangled both poverty and privilege, reflecting the complexity of post-colonial societies emerging from feudalism. Multiple enemies point to undisclosed secrets.


Aziz’s former lover whose family honour is now threatened represents gender dynamics shifting under Zia. Seeking answers despite the dangers faced, Rukhsana demonstrates new independence and vulnerabilities of women in the 1980s context.

Through these multi-layered characterizations, Siddiqui sparked complex reflections on justice, power and socio-political change.

Minor characters Murder of Aziz Khan

Here are analyses of minor characters in Murder of Aziz Khan:

Inspector Farooq

Ghazan’s unscrupulous colleague, Farooq embodies polarization between principled investigators and increasingly criminal elements within the force. His sabotage of the case underscores how breakdowns in law and order enable rapacious power players on every rung of society.


Rukhsana’s sister who disapproves of her past relationship, Ayesha struggles to balance traditional notions of izzat with Rukhsana’s autonomy – highlighting changing gender equations. Her disapproval of Ghazan’s questioning norms also reflects conservative backlash.

Maulana Tariq

A radical cleric with suspected underworld ties, Tariq represents the formidable strength accrued by extremism that mushroomed under the shadow of Zia’s dictatorship. His menacing influence looms increasingly over the investigation.

Through nuanced renderings of varied opponents to justice, Siddiqui sketched a multifaceted portrait of eroding institutional trust and social transformations in Zia’s Pakistan.


The Murder of Aziz Khan depicts the challenges of solving a crime amid corruption in 1980s Pakistan under Zia. Through Ghazan’s crusade, integrity and desire for justice are shown to persist despite compromised systems. Siddiqui crafts a complex mystery that illuminates a transitional nation.

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