SAC Held Countrywide Solidarity March
On Friday, Students and activist from all over the country came out to join the Student Solidarity March, led by the (SAC), to present the complete and true picture of demands including the restoration of student unions and better education facilities.
The Progressive Students’ Collective (PSC) shared the final locations for the march taking place in 50 cities of Pakistan. While in some cities the march started in the morning, in others it was expected in the afternoon.
The march kicked off early evening in Karachi, with students, parents, lawyers as well as prominent civil society members — such as Mohammad Hanif and Jibran Nasir — gathering at Regal Chowk and then marching on to Atrium Mall with the aim of reaching Karachi Press Club.
Echoes of “Hum kya chaahte? Aazaadi!” (What do we want? Freedom!) Resounded frequently in the area.
Jibran Nasir, while speaking to the media, said: “I have come to support our country’s future. Students are our future. We must realize that our future will never be bright if we keep on lighting monuments of the past.”
“Any real and new leadership that comes forth in the country, will not cross through the corridors of Aabpaara and Pindi. It will come from colleges and universities,” said Nasir.
Students from Balochistan also participated in the march in Karachi demanding the arrest of the vice-chancellor of Balochistan University for his alleged involvement in the harassment of the varsity’s students.
Additionally, students from Gilgit-Baltistan also took part to protest the lack of facilities to pursue higher education in the region. “There is only one university in GB and it is substandard. We can’t study there, so we moved to Karachi,” said one participant.
The city’s students belonging to private universities said they are protesting because of the “price hike, dress code and harassment on campus”.
In Lahore, protesters gathered early afternoon at Nasser Bagh and began their march towards Punjab Assembly. Outside the Assembly building on The Mall at Chairing Cross square, a stage was prepared to offer speakers a platform to address the gathering.
A protest rally against the ban on student unions in Balochistan University as well as other universities was also taken out in Quetta. Participants included members of various student organisations who gathered at Baldia Lawn and marched across various thoroughfares and back to the point of origin.
Earlier, the PSC and other organisations from all over Pakistan had formed the committee (SAC) at a national level to demand the revival of student unions and other issues. Representatives of student organisations from Sindh, Balochistan, Gilgit-Baltistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab are part of the SAC.