Visuals of a Professor at LUMS and a feminist activist, Nida Kirmani are being shared online, in which she is being severely manhandled by the Sindh Police.
These visuals are from a protest outside Karachi Press Club, organized at 4:30pm today by the families of Baloch missing persons, where Professor Kirmani and others joined in support. Baloch Yakjehti Committee and Voice For Baloch Missing Persons organized the protest and attendees included activist Baloch Amna Baloch, Zareena Baloch, the wife of still missing Sharif Baloch and others.
The protesters demanded an explanation of the increased enforced disappearances ever since Pakistan’s first female suicide bombing took place inside the University of Karachi campus on April 26. Since then, several Baloch female students have been abducted in Karachi and Balochistan.
The police reached ahead of time and since the beginning of the protest, kept the whole area under heavy surveillance, interrogating the press until eventually they arrested a bunch of protesters and took them into custody.
Murtaza Wahab, Adviser to the Chief Minister Sindh and Aseefa Bhutto Zardari also tweeted in support of the protesters.
On Tuesday, the Sindh government had imposed Section 144 across the province for at least 20 days. The police action today was taken in justification of keeping up that law. Eventually those arrested were released as well. Journalist Zia ur Rehman spoke to Team Current, and explained the rising unrest in Karachi following the multiple enforced disappearances ever since the University of Karachi suicide bombing.
Professor Kirmani tweeted a selfie from inside the police station, as those in custody wait to be given their phones back.
In conversation with activist Sammi Deen Baloch, it was emphasised that when the initial arrests were made only two women were at the venue with some young students. The police also included lady constables who manhandled and dragged the women to the police van. After the arrests were made some protesters including Sammi Deen Baloch stood their ground outside the Karachi Press Club demanding their release. The police took pictures of every one and tried to make some activists sign what Sammi Deen called a “fake statement” which claimed that the police had mistakenly made the arrest but the protesters refused to sign and it was reported that the police’s behaviors softened when they realized that Professor Kirmani was one of the women.