'Voice of the oppressed:' Asma Jahangir, rights activist, dies at 66

12 February, 2018, 01:26 | Author: Genevieve Gibbs
  • Death of Asma Jahangir is shocking

Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Saqib Nisar Sunday arrived at residence of former president of Supreme Court (SC) bar council and human rights lawyers Asma Jahangir to extend his condolences to the grieving family over her demise. She was admitted to a private hospital last night over cardiac problem, where she breathed her last.

She was the co-founder of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and the Women's Action Forum. A great colleague Asma Jahangir passes away. "Despite our differences I always respected her for her fight for human rights and for standing up for her convictions", said Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party Imran Khan.

Jehangir also served as president of the Supreme Court's Bar Association and was a United Nations rapporteur on human rights and extrajudicial killings.

Jahangir was also the co-chair of South Asians for Human Rights.

Asma is survived by two daughters and a son.

She was again put under house arrest in November 2007 after the imposition of emergency rule in Pakistan.

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She was among the rare personalities participated in the Movement for the Restoration of Democracy (MRD) during Ziaul Haq's dictatorial regime and sent to Jail for her activism in 1983.

A champion of human rights, Jehangir was unafraid to speak loudly against those attacking minority religions and women.

Asma had received the Friends of Liberation War Honour conferred upon her late father Malik Ghulam Jilani by the Bangladesh government in March, 2013.

She often had a tempestuous relation with the Pakistani state. She struggled and spent her life for the Human rights issues of the oppressed people in Pakistan.

She was on Time magazine's list of 100 most influential women.

"I will not leave", she said.

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A secular-minded Muslim, Ms. Jehangir defended the rights of Christians and other minorities throughout her career, denouncing the abuse of blasphemy laws against them.

The firebrand human rights activist graduated from Kinnaird College and later pursued an LLB from Punjab University.

Nandita said Asma's death was a massive loss to the neighbouring country.

The representative of Baloch Republican Party to the UNHRC, Abdul Nawaz Bugti said that Asma Jahangir was a courageous voice of the oppressed people, including the Baloch who stood for their rights and spoke truth to the power. Her courage to speak truth to power was unprecedented and exemplary.

Asma Jahangir was a very prominent Pakistani social activist espousing the cause of peace between India and Pakistan.

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