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News Worms


Prominent Pak activist Asma Jahangir passes away

Prominent Pak activist Asma Jahangir passes away

She remained in office at the Human Rights Commission till 2011, serving in as its secretary general and later as chairperson.

She was the first woman president of Pakistan's Supreme Court lawyers association. She was also appointed as UN Rapporteur in the region during the 1990s.

She was jailed in 1983 for participating in a pro-democracy movement against then military ruler Gen. Muhammad Ziaul Haq.

Asma Jahangir secured a number of victories during her life, from winning freedom for bonded labourers from their "owners" through pioneering litigation, to a landmark court case that allowed women to marry of their own volition.

Nobel Peace Prize victor Malala Yousafzai described her as a "savior of democracy and human rights".

Known for her outspoken nature and unrelenting pursuit for human rights, she is survived by a son and two daughters. We believe that when there is a democratic setup, we have a greater voice. There she met many women who had been arrested under the new laws, and, after coming out, took up their cases. She was most unwanted person by establishment of Pakistan during all marial Laws but she never compromised or bowed down against dictatorial rules. Later, in 1980, Jahangir, her sister Hina Jilani, and Gulrukh founded the first women's law firm of Pakistan.

While she received several national awards, including the Sitara-I-Imtiaz in 1995, Jahangir was again put under house arrest in November 2007 after President Pervez Musharraf imposed Emergency.

According to reports, she had been suffering from cancer and remained under treatment for years.

Few Pakistani rights activists have achieved the credibility of Jahangir. "May her soul rest in peace!" Pakistan has lost a passionate champion of human rights and a staunch supporter of democracy.

" 'Speaking truth to power, ' a phrase we often use, Asma Jehangir lived, practiced till her last breath", said another activist, Raza Ahmed Rumi.

Her sudden death saddened the entire nation as people from all social strata, including politicians, lawyers, judges, civil rights campaigners, expressed their condolences. She served on several missions for the United Nations and won numerous worldwide awards.

"Her demise is a big loss for the marginalised communities in Pakistan, a loss for the secular people of Pakistan, and a loss for the voice of reason".

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