Protest erupts at Balochistan University over alleged harassment of students by varsity officials

Published October 15, 2019
Students marched in protest inside the Balochistan Univeristy campus, carrying placards inscribed with slogans such as  "Punish the accused", " No to harassment", "We want justice". — DawnNewsTV
Students marched in protest inside the Balochistan Univeristy campus, carrying placards inscribed with slogans such as "Punish the accused", " No to harassment", "We want justice". — DawnNewsTV

Various students organisations staged demonstrations inside Balochistan University on Tuesday, in protest over the harassment scandal unearthed by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) a day earlier.

The students marched inside the campus to mount pressure on the authorities to punish the culprits allegedly involved in the harassment of female and male students.

The case had come to light about a month ago when the Balochistan High Court (BHC) directed the FIA to investigate reports of students being harassed at the varsity.

The FIA, which has been probing the case for several weeks now, discovered that male and female students were being harassed through "objectionable" videos of them. These videos were recorded using at least six cameras that were secretly installed at various spots in the university's Quetta campus, in addition to the already existing official CCTV cameras.

"This is not acceptable; we cannot compromise on our dignity," Khalid Baloch, the central office-bearer of Baloch Students Organisation said.

The protesters lamented that the harassment scandal has severely affected the atmosphere of education in the province in general and at Balochistan University in particular.

They carried placards inscribed with slogans such as "Punish the accused", " No to harassment", "We want justice", etc, during the protest demonstration.

"This harassment was going on for a long time in the university," Kabeer Afghan, the central office-bearer of Pashtoonkhwa Students Organisation said.

The students, chanting slogans against the university administration, demanded a comprehensive probe into the matter. They also demanded the removal of the vice chancellor and other high-ups.

"Harassment cases should be probed in all three major universities of Quetta," Dawood Shah, the president of Insaf Students Federation, demanded at a press conference at the Quetta Press Club held later in the day. He said the government must act and act quickly to bring the perpetrators to book so that such incidents could be avoided in future.

Reacting to the scandal, Balochistan University Vice-Chancellor Dr Javed Iqbal in a video clip obtained by DawnNewsTV said: "We will cooperate with FIA in exposing the elements involved in the scandal."

He dispelled the impression that the FIA had made any arrest from the university.

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