LAHORE: Punjab University Human Rights Chair has organized a seminar and formed a human chain to recall that equal rights must be given to every human being without discrimination and international powers should play their role to ensure provision of human rights across the board.

In this regard, a seminar was organized by PU Human Rights Chair at School of Communication Studies in which Punjab Minister for Human Rights and Minority Affairs Mr Ejaz Alam Augustine, PU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Niaz Ahmad, Gender Equality Committee Chairperson MPA Uzma Kardar, Dean Faculty of Information and Media Studies Prof Dr Khalid Mahmood, Chairperson Department of Public Relations and Advertising and Human Rights Chair Prof Dr Abida Ashraf, faculty members and a large number of students participated.

Talking to the media, Mr Augustine said that the human chain had been formed at Punjab University to express the resolve that we were determined to provide equal opportunities to all and ensure provision of human rights to every segment of the society. He said that the message of human rights was being delivered through mosques today as it would play an important role to create awareness in this regard. He said that the incident of Sialkot had reminded us that there was a need to spread the message of humanity to discourage this mindset.

PU VC Prof Niaz Ahmad said that PU for the first time has established a human rights chair to highlight issues of human rights, create awareness and suggest solutions to such problems. He said that our religion had given the message of humanity and equality fourteen hundred years ago, which was being visualized, idealized and pursued by today’s world. He said that international powers were not playing their role to ensure provision of basic human rights across the board and one could easily witness serious violations of human rights in Kashmir, Palestine, Syria, Afghanistan, India and other countries.

He said that the constitution of Pakistan gave protection to the people from all the sections of the society. He said that we must provide due rights to others. He said that PU had provided jobs to Hindus, Sikhs and Christians in grade 17 and 19. He urged the students of communication studies to play their role in creating awareness regarding human rights and become a role model for others through becoming law-abiding citizens. Ms Uzma Kardar said that humans were exploiting and usurping the rights of humans. She said that we were living in the age in which most resources of the world were in the hands of a few hundred people. Therefore, she added, how could we maintain balance in the world? She said that humans were responsible for all the killings and massacres on the earth.

Dr Khalid Mahmood said that we needed to bring change in the mindset to ensure human rights in the world. He said that we must not be a part of any such activities which violate the rights of others.

Prof Dr Abida Ashraf said that all the human rights were connected with the right to live. She said that these rights had been given to human beings by nature. She said that Islam had given the message of equality and said that killing one human being was equal to killing the whole humanity and saving one human being was equal to saving the whole humanity. She said that Islam discouraged all sorts of discriminations and taught us that no one was superior to other on the basis of wealth, cost, color etc. She said that the United Nations prepared the draft of Human Rights after the efforts of three years and adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 to ensure that everyone could get equal treatment and due rights regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

However, she said, the goals could not be achieved even today. Look at what is happening in Kashmir, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Rohingya and other countries, she said, adding even in the most developed country like the United States, there were rights campaigns like Black Lives Matter. She said that December 10 reminded us to respect the rights of others. Later, the participants formed a human chain outside the School of Communication Studies.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

Write A Comment