Pak activist Asma Jahangir passes away

Renowned Pakistani human rights activist and lawyer Asma Jahangir passed away here on Sunday.

According to Geo TV, Jahangir, the first woman President of the Pakistan Supreme Court Bar Association, was shifted to a hospital on Saturday night after suffering cardiac arrest. As a daughter, mother and legal expert, she had left irremovable imprints on the judicial and political history of Pakistan, he remarked.

She was not only a symbol of bravery and strength for the people of Pakistan but also an inspiration for women across the globe. "Her spirit will live as long as that voice in our head keeps telling us what is not right, what must not be tolerated, why not to give in or give up".

People turned to social media to mourn the loss of one of Pakistan's "bravest" and most "fearless" activists. If the answer was in the affirmative, she urged the Pakistan government to explain why. "I feel very proud that he went to jail because he did the right thing", she told The Daily Star in an interview after receiving the award. She won scores of worldwide awards. She remained there until 1988 before moving back to Pakistan.

"We R waiting 4 our relatives 2 return 2 Lahore", her daughter Munizae Jahangir said. "May her soul rest in peace!", Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said in a tweet.

Nobel Peace Prize victor Malala Yousafzai called Asma a "saviour of democracy and human rights".

President Mamnoon Hussain, Chief Justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar along with other politicians, lawyers and journalists have expressed grief over Jahangir's death.

Known for her bold stance, Asma was the country's symbol of resistance and a human rights activist who spoke against military dictators and abusers of law for the past five decades. She was called to the Lahore High Court in 1980 and to the Pakistan Supreme Court two years later.

She was among the senior advocates in Pakistan and she co-founded Human Rights of Commission of Pakistan. "The best tribute to her is to continue her fight for human rights and democracy".

The activist and lawyer received several awards, including the French Legion of Honor and was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005.

In her lifetime, she was awarded with prestigious awards in the country including the Hilal-i-Imtiaz and Sitara-i-Imtiaz in recognition of her services.

  • Joey Payne