Asma Jehangir, Pakistani lawyer and human rights activist, dies at 66

Asma Jahangir Asma Jahangir passes away Asma Jahangir dead Asma Jahangir news pakistan

Prominent Pakistani senior lawyer and human rights activist, Asma Jahangir, passed away at the age of 66 here on Sunday.

Jahangir was born in Lahore in January 1952.

Known for her struggle for protection of Pakistani Constitution, Asman Jhangir would be remembered for all times to come.

Asma Jahangir was the first woman to serve as president of the Supreme Court Bar Association. She was also appointed as United Nations rapporteur in the region during the 1990s.

Her early activism was forged as a young woman during the repressive military rule of Gen. Muhammad Zia ul-Haq in the 1980s, when she was arrested and imprisoned for protesting against Zia's harsh "Islamization" policies and curtailment of women's rights.

Comments on Twitter, like the one below from a person apparently belonging to Pakistan's restive Balochistan province, where activists often complain of enforced disappearances and other rights violations, show how those in the country who felt oppressed viewed her.

The pro-democracy activist championed women's rights throughout her career.

She was critical of the Supreme Court for "judicial activism" and also criticised the apex court for disqualifying Nawaz Sharif from the office of prime minister in July past year.

Asma Jahangir was elected as SCBA president on October 27, 2010.

She faced death threats, beatings and imprisonment to win landmark human rights cases while standing against dictators.

"It is a tribute to a large number of Pakistanis who have worked relentlessly for better human rights in the country", she said. "It's everyone's loss. What a sad day!" she said.

"South Asia has lost an ardent advocate of women's rights and democracy by the death of Asma Jahangir".

In addition to her sister, survivors include her husband, Tahir Jehangir of Lahore; two daughters and a son.

In Pakistan, she was awarded the Hilal-i-Imtiaz and the Sitara-i-Imtiaz, the second and third highest civilian honours. We say goodbye to a great great artist and a fearless activist.

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

A fierce defender of democracy, Jahangir was an outspoken critic of Pakistan's powerful military establishment and Islamic extremists.

Jahangir is also a recipient of the 2010 Freedom Award and 2014 Right Livelihood Award. In 2012 she claimed her life was in danger from the feared Inter Services Intelligence spy agency.

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