KARACHI The provincial metropolis on Friday mourned the demise of MQM leader Dr Imran Farooq who was stabbed to death in London Thursday night. The City wore a deserted look as Friday was the first day of the 10-day mourning, announced by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) to pay homage to the slain leader who was its chief ideologue. The life remained paralysed as there was no public transport on roads, making citizens to face difficulties in carrying on their routine activities. All major markets in North Nazimabad, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, North Karachi, Gulistan-e-Jauhar, PIB Colony, Liaquatabad, New MA Jinnah Road, Bolton Market and Saddar as well as public and private educational institutions remained off the schedule while attendance at public offices was thin as people preferred to stay in-door due to the prevailing uncertainty. Above all, public transport disappeared from roads as the Karachi Transport Ittehad had announced the other day not to bring vehicles on roads on Friday to avert any untoward incident while the closure of petrol and CNG filling stations added to the difficulties of the people. Certain rural outskirts and some settlements in the City, such as Pathan Colony, Qasba Morr, Machhar Colony, Baldia Town, Orangi Town, Tin Hatti, Gujjar Nullah, Paposh Nagar, Shahnawaz Bhutto Colony, Akhtar Colony and Keamari were also affected by the strike-like situation. People had to endure immense problems due to the shortage of essential commodities in these localities. Moreover, majority of daily-wagers in the City in general and in the above-said localities in particular could not leave their homes for earning a living for their families. Meanwhile, unidentified miscreants torched seven vehicles in different areas including Punjab Chowrangi, Garden area and Korangi Zaman Town near Chakra Goth. As per details, in the wee hours of Friday, unidentified miscreants set ablaze three cars and a dumper truck at Punjab Chowrangi area, a passenger bus of route No S-2 at Zaman Town in Chakra Goth and a Khan Coach at Aram Bagh area was also burnt. There are also reports of sporadic aerial firing from different areas, however, no casualty was brought to any government hospital. Agencies add: Karachi went on alert Friday, braced for possible violence as businesses ground to a halt after the killing in London of MQM leader Dr Imran Farooq exiled in Britain. Imran Farooq was found with head injuries and stab wounds outside his home in north London on Thursday. Imran was climbing the stairs of his flat in Mill Hill, north London, when an unknown person stabbed him twice. He fell down the stairs. The assailant followed him and again stabbed him twice at the bottom of the stairs. British police said they were called to reports of a serious assault in the Edgware district of the capital at 5:30 pm (1630 GMT). Officers found an Asian man, aged 50, with stab wounds and head injuries. Paramedics treated the man but he was pronounced dead at the scene at 6:37 pm (1737 GMT), said a spokesman for Londons Metropolitan Police. Streets in Karachi were largely empty as MQM declared 10 days of mourning and scrapped birthday celebrations for its leader, Altaf Hussain, who is also based in Britain. The situation was tense, with most shops, restaurants and schools were closed. The murder of an MQM lawmaker, Raza Haider, in Karachi last month triggered a wave of political and ethnic killing in the city that left dozens dead. We have taken precautionary measures to ensure that no unholy element takes advantage of the situation and create violence, city police chief Fayyaz Leghari told AFP. At present the city is calm and peaceful, he added. Party faithful have been gathering outside Farooqs home in Karachi, consoling each other. Many had tears in their eyes. Farooqs father Farooq Ahmed said he spoke to his son two days ago. We dont know exact reasons behind the incident, let the police to investigate and decide, Ahmed told reporters outside his house. I had talked to him on telephone two days ago. He was in his typical lighter mood and expressed nothing which we could say was extraordinary. He had no bodyguards and would live like any common man in London, Ahmed said and added Well bury his body in Pakistan. Faisal Sabzwari, MQM leader and provincial minister for youth affairs said, We - the party - are relying fully on the investigation and findings of the London police and whichever agency is involved into the matter. Monitoring Desk adds: The murder investigation has meanwhile been taken over by the London Metropolitan Polices counter-terrorism unit, SO15, reported BBC. According to the broadcast, although no one has yet been arrested over the stabbing of Imran Farooq, the working assumption at this stage is that it was politically motivated. Many in Pakistan fear that if the British police find a political link to Farooqs death, serious rioting could follow. Imran Farooq was in essence the partys deputy leader, though he had not returned to Pakistan since claiming asylum in the UK. He had become marginalised recently, but was still powerful in Karachi. According to a private TV channel, British police have taken Dr Imran Farooqs wife into protective custody on Friday. Shumaila Imran has been taken into custody by the police as a precautionary measure against what it said a possible threat to her life. Police have also seized her mobile, landline phone record and advised her not to contact any person neither in UK nor in Pakistan. Police may release an appeal on behalf of Shumaila Imran very soon, the channel further reported.