MARDAN, March 14: Hundreds of people on Wednesday agitated against the government’s failure to recover kidnapped Vice Chancellor of Islamia College University, Peshawar, Professor Dr Ajmal Khan despite passage of one and a half years.

Protesters took out a rally from the College Chowk to Kutcheri Chowk before blocking the square and staging a demonstration.

They later burnt tyres and stayed put for several hours suspending traffic.

Aman Jirga, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, provincial president and ex-minister Kamal Shah led the protesters, who also set up a hunger strike camp at the College Chowk.

Jirga general secretary Arshad Manan, ex-MPA of JUI-Fazl Maulana Amaanat Shah, Markazi Tanzeem-i-Tajraan president Mustafa Kamal and representatives of different union organisations and members of civil society organisations were also in attendance.

On the occasion, jirga leaders said the government had failed to provide security to people and that its failure to recover the Islamia College University vice chancellor after one and a half years of kidnapping was disappointing.

They said the government seemed not interested in the vice chancellor’s kidnapping as their repeated requests for his release had fallen on deaf ears.

The jirga leaders said they would form a committee at provincial level for meeting the relevant officials of the provincial government and President Zardari to demand necessary steps for the vice chancellor’s early recovery.

Meanwhile, provincial Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (Smeda) coordinator Samad Hassan on Wednesday urged traders to benefit from facilities and privileges offered by it.

During a meeting at the Mardan Chamber of Commerce and Industry offices here, he urged traders to use the platform of the chamber for optimally using all Smeda programmes to their benefit.

Mr Hassan He said the government had arranged a special grant for the victims of the last year’s devastating flood in Mardan and therefore, the calamity-hit traders from the region should contact the trade ministry for it.—Correspondent

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