She is a leading Pakistani lawyer, advocate of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, President Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan and human rights activist, who works both in Pakistan and internationally to prevent the persecution of religious minorities, women, and exploitation of children.
She was the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief from August 2004 to July 2010 (first attached to the former Commission on Human Rights, now to the Human Rights Council). Previously, she served as the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Arbitrary and Summary Executions.
She is a founding member of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, and has served as Secretary-General and later Chairperson of the organization.
Jahangir and her sister, joined with fellow activists and lawyers to form the first law firm established by women in Pakistan.
In the same year they also helped form the Women’s Action Forum (WAF); a pressure group campaigning against Pakistan’s discriminatory legislation, most notably against the Proposed Law of Evidence, where the value of a woman’s testimony was reduced to half that of a man’s testimony, and the Hadood Ordinances, where victims of rape had to prove their innocence or else face punishment themselves.
On February 12, 1983, the Punjab Women Lawyers Association in Lahore organised a public protest (one of its leaders was Jahangir) against the Proposed Law of Evidence, during which Jahangir and other participating WAF members were beaten, teargassed, and arrested by police.
In 1982 Jahangir earned the nickname “little heroine” after leading a protest march in Islamabad against a decision by then-president Zia ul Haq to enforce religious laws and stated: “Family laws [which are religious laws] give women few rights” and that “They have to be reformed because Pakistan cannot live in isolation. We cannot remain shackled while other women progress.”
In 1986 Jahangir and Hina set up AGHS Legal Aid, the first free legal aid centre in Pakistan. The AGHS Legal Aid Cell in Lahore also runs a shelter for women, called ‘Dastak’.
She won the Supreme Court Bar Association election by defeating her competitor Ahmed Awais and securing 834 of total votes and became the first ever women President of SCBA in the history of Pakistan.
She has recived; the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders as well as the Ramon Magsaysay Award for “greatness of spirit shown in service of the people”, the Millennium prize, by UNIFEM (the United Nations Development Fund for Women) in collaboration with the non-governmental organisation International Alert, the Freedom of Worship Medal for her human rights and religious freedom activism in a ceremony held in the Nieuwe Kerk in Holland, theHilal-i-Imtiaz, the second highest civilian award of Pakistan and the 2010 UNESCO/Bilbao Prize for the Promotion of a Culture of Human Rights, recognizing her efforts as a human rights defender. (via womenwhokickass)
Italian archaeologists say they have discovered a cemetery that reveals complex funeral rites dating back more than 3,000 years in Pakistan’s Swat valley, recently controlled by the Taliban.
The Italian mission began digging in the 1950s at Udegram, a site of Buddhist treasures in Swat, the northwestern district formerly known as the Switzerland of Pakistan for its stunning mountains, valleys and rivers.
Archaeologists were aware of a pre-Buddhist grave site in Udegram, but only recently discovered the collection of almost 30 graves, tightly clustered and partially overlapping.
“Some graves had a stone wall, others were protected by walls and enclosures in beaten clay,” Luca Maria Olivieri, head of the Italian mission, told AFP.
“The cemetery… seems to have been used between the end of the second millennium BCE and the first half of the first millennium BCE,” he added.
Modern-day Persian warriors battle it out over traditional Ramazan matches
Come Ramazan and Parsis in Karachi gear up for a volleyball face-off which is not just a 46-year-old sports tradition, but a highly competitive one.
“Saying that the teams get competitive would be an understatement!” says Yashaan Mavalvala, who participated every year in the inter-colony volleyball tournament from 1998 till 2009, before leaving for his studies. “Every Ramazan, all the Parsis come together and almost kill each other out in the court during the tournament.” (complete news)
In the 1965 war with India, Flight Lieutenant Chaudhry shot down three Indian aircraft in one mission. In the 1971 war with India, he has a close call when his plane was hit over Indian territory but he managed to glide the plane back into Pakistan.
He passed away recently after a long battle against Cancer. He will be remembered by his family and Pakistanis everywhere.
Pakistan’s cultural treasure documented by Japanese archaeologist
Islamabad—A renowned Japanese professor and archaeologist, Prof. Koji Nishikawa has spend more than two decades to come up with an excellent publication on Pakistan’s brilliant chapters of cultural history, titled ‘Ranigat, a Buddhist Site in Gandhara, Pakistan, surveyed 1983-1992’.
The comprehensive report, based on two volumes, is a fine photographic record of the excavations at Ranigat, one of the largest Buddhist sites in Gandhara, illustrating some 2000 rare photographs of excavated objects including sculptures, stone objects, stucco, terracotta, stone reliquary, and stone lamps.
Along with rare photographs and scientific research, the Report, illustrate the journey of 10 Japanese experts headed by Prof. Nishikawa as the director of the Kyoto University, Scientific Expedition to Gandhara, who undertook pilot excavation on the site of Ranigat during 1982 and 1992, discovering many Buddhist stupas, shrines and monasteries. Read more.(via archaeologicalnews)
The new, improved and much expanded Saint Peter’s Church opened its doors for services on November 9 and requests for wedding ceremonies and other services have flooded in. The brown-brick building sprawls over 21,000 square feet and can house 5,000 worshippers at a time. Overshooting St Patrick’s Cathedral’s capacity of 2,000 people, St Peter’s Church is now the largest Catholic church in Pakistan.