|Biographical detail : ||Pakistani human rights activist
For over four decades Asma Jahangir has towered over Pakistan’s human rights war. She has championed battered wives, rescued teenagers from death row, defended people accused of blasphemy, and sought justice for the victims of honour killings.
Dubbed as “Asian hero” by Time magazine, Asma is what people of Pakistan think – the woman to call when in trouble. She helped found, in 1986, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, a collective of lawyers and activists. She was awarded UN prize for human rights in 2010 for “her commitment to fostering inter-religious and inter-cultural dialogue, tolerance, mutual understanding and co-operation for peace.”
Jahangir launched her own rebellion in 1969 with a women’s march to the residence of the governor of Punjab. She trained as a lawyer and in 1980 set up, with others, Pakistan’s first all-female legal firm.
Daughter of Malik Jilani, a civil servant who resigned in protest after Pakistan’s first military coup, in 1958, Asma was jailed for leading protests against the Hudood ordinances during Zia Ul Haq (1977-88) government.
Currently Asma is the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan. Internationally, she is known for her roles as the UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions.