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'Profound grief' for British-Pakistani father son on Titan

'Profound grief' for family of British-Pakistani father and son on Titanic sub
3 min read
23 June, 2023
Shahzada Dawood, 48, and his son Suleman, 19, are members of the Dawood dynasty, owners of an industrial empire that is one of the most profitable in Pakistan.
Art school students give final touches to a painting depicting five people aboard a submersible named Titan, that went missing near the wreck of the Titanic, in Mumbai on 22 June 2023. [Getty]

The family of the British-Pakistani father and son among the five people who died on the Titanic tourist submersible expressed "profound grief" at their loss Friday.

Shahzada Dawood, 48, and his son Suleman, 19, are members of the Dawood dynasty, owners of an industrial empire that is one of the most profitable in Pakistan.

"It is with profound grief that we announce the passing of Shahzada and Suleman Dawood," said a statement from the Dawood Foundation, a family-run education charity.

"We extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of the other passengers on the Titan submersible," it read, signed by Hussain and Kulsum Dawood, Shahzada's parents.

"We are truly grateful to all those involved in the rescue operations. Their untiring efforts were a source of strength for us during this time."

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Hussain Dawood is one of Pakistan's richest men and head of the Engro Corporation which has an array of interests in energy, agriculture, petrochemicals and telecommunications.

At the end of 2022, the firm posted revenue of 350 billion rupees (US$1.2 billion).

In a statement, Engro said it was mourning Shahzada - who served as vice-chairman - and "his beloved son" Suleman "with heavy hearts and great sadness".

"We extend our heartfelt condolences to the family, colleagues, friends, and all those around the world who grieve this unthinkable loss."

Shahzada also served as a trustee of the California-based Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute, which looks for evidence of alien life.

"It is with great sadness that we learned of the loss of our dear friend," said CEO Bill Diamond in a statement.

"Shahzada was passionately curious and an enthusiastic supporter of the SETI Institute and our mission, being directly involved in philanthropic programs in education, research and public outreach."

"He will be deeply missed by all who knew him," the statement added.

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Educated in the UK and the United States, Shahzada lived in Britain with his wife Christine, Suleman, and his daughter Alina.

Both father and son had British citizenship, according to a family statement released when the search was still underway.

It described Shahzada as a "loving father" with a keen interest in "photography, especially wildlife photography, and exploring different natural habitats".

The family said Suleman was "a big fan of science fiction literature and learning new things".

Since the 1960s, the Dawood Foundation has focused on establishing educational institutions across Pakistan - particularly catering to the demand for engineers and technology experts.

Shahzada was also on the board of Prince's Trust International - a charity founded by Britain's King Charles III that helps young people get jobs and education.

In February 2020, he was a keynote speaker on a panel at the United Nations on gender equality in agriculture.