An academician in Pakistan was arrested Saturday after police raided his house for participating in an anti-state protest following the death of an ethnic Pashtun leader earlier this month, police said. Ammar Ali Jan, associated with Lahore-situated Forman Christian college, was arrested from his residence and taken to the Gulberg police station. He was later released on bail.
“Police arrested lecturer Dr Ammar Ali Jan of Forman Christian (FC) College from his residence Saturday morning in connection with an FIR registered against him for taking part in a protest in Lahore’s Liberty Chowk this week in which anti-state slogans were chanted,” Muhammad Hammad, Lahore police spokesman, said. Jan was part of the protest that was held against the death of Arman Loni from the Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM), a social campaign for Pashtun human rights based in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
Loni died on February 2 after baton charge by the police to disperse protesters of PTM while holding a peaceful protest against the terrorist attacks on security forces in Loralai in country’s Balochistan province. In the FIR, Jan has been accused of leading a group of 100-150 people which was blocking the roads. “The gathering was blocking roads and Jan along with some others were chanting slogans against state institutions and intelligence agencies,” the paper reported, quoting the FIR.
Hammad said Jan remained in police custody for few hours as he was later in the day was granted bail by the local magistrate. Jan said that his house was raided prior to the arrest. “There is an FIR against me for participating at the protest in Liberty against the killing of Professor Arman Loni. I was taken into custody at 4 am which is when “the police raided my house,” he said in a Facebook post.
In April 2018, Jan was removed from the visiting faculty post at the Punjab University, for what the administration says, “failing to meet contract requirements”, according to the report.
It was however alleged that Jan was sacked over his political views and activism.