Archive for January, 2010

islamic university – update

January 28, 2010

islamic university – update

january 25, 2010

met with the president of the university dr. anwar h siddiqui, had a very cordial talk about the university, the campus, both at h 10, and the faisal mosque, and the proposed activity. he went through the paper (even corrected a typo!) and sent me to meet ms. parveen qadir agha, the vice president (administration and finance)/director (female campus) who he called on the phone to say i was on my way.

ms. agha listened to me without interruption, and we talked of the bomb blasts at the university, amman, wfp blast, and the activity, i found her to be very open and receptive to the idea of an activity that would give the student/faculty/staff community an opportunity/forum/outlet to talk of their feelings about the twin bomb attacks at the university in a structured and supportive environment .

the first meeting to discuss the methodology and get inputs from the university is scheduled for monday, february 01, 2010. afternoon, the office of ms. agha called me in the evening of 25-01-10 to confirm some points, as they were preparing a notice to circulate on this subject.

i am sure that the enthusiasm shown both by the president and the vice president auger well for this activity to be a successful venture.

next report after the meeting on 01-02-10.

comments and suggestions welcome.

lahore – january 12-14, 2010, new years first post

January 19, 2010

the account of the trip to lahore, delayed due to internet access / cold-flu / and eating too many peanuts finally done and here.

at the onset i would like to thank dr nadeem omar tarar, department of communication and cultural studies, national college of arts, for his dedication, and his presence with me for all the activities that we did, without him this would not have been possible.

* january 12

– met and discussed what had happened since our last meeting in december, and worked out the plan for the three days that i was in lahore.

– visits:

+ human rights commission of pakistan, head office – met mr. zaman khan, in-charge complaint cell, and talked about the hrcp and its mandate. we found out that victims of terrorism, or survivors are not listed as a human right issue which the hrcp looks at, profiles and reports on. (follow up required on this at a later)

+ lahore university of management sciences : met dr. farrukh khan, and dr. ali qazilbash, of the department of humanities and social sciences. a useful and lengthy discussion took place, outcome:

> talk to lums students sometime in mid february,  farrukh will involve one of the lums students society in this activity.

> work with the lums counselor to get her help in giving training or lectures about empathy and related issues for volunteer students.

> dr ali qazilbash will arrange a talk with the bar association lahore, and also provide access to justice through the legal aid society for survivors if they need any assistance in legal issues that may face.

> farrukh will look for other avenues where the lums fraternity can come up with ideas, or plans for activities related to terrorism and/or survivors

* january 13

– visited interactive resource centre, on raiwind road, met with mr wuhammad waseem, director, and saw a street drama acted on stage, followed by an interactive question answer session with the audience, comprising of social activists, students, housewives, and other segments of society. the discussion moved between kerry lugar bill, domestic violence, regional languages, terrorism, education, and more. Very useful and thought provoking question and answers were exchanged.

* january 14

– fc college, lahore contact person mr raheem-ul-haque, research fellow, centre for public policy and governance.

talked to students, who although few in number were active participants in the discussion that followed the talk. (picture uploaded.)

+ others who attended include, ms. saeeda diep, nadeem omar tarar, mr saeed shafqat head cpph, khurram waqas malik research fellow, after the talk, we had an informal meeting and the following discussion was held:

+ setting up of the pakistan terrorism survivors network as a registered entity to overcome the need for institutionalizing the effort and providing a platform for bureaucratic reasons.

+ while meeting the survivors, we will try to identify one or more who along with me, can be made a part of the speaking trips, so that we can have a profounder impact with two speakers two stories to share.

+ ideas for the outline of the survivors registration form, were discussed and the form layout etc, will be done by nadeem and shared for comments.

> work plan of the ptsn were discussed and the following ideas came up:

+ short term goals: setting up / registration of the ptsn, identifying survivors, registering survivors, survivor profiling, data base creation,web-site of ptsn, volunteer enrolment.

+ identify and finalize mission, and goals of the ptsn

+ mid-term goals: office setup, continuing short term activities, continue contacts and other outreach activities.

+ long term goals: talk to education institutions for scholarships for survivor children; institution building;  trainings for volunteers and survivors in first aid, empathy, and similar issues.

+ nadeem and raheem to share the list of volunteers with the participants, these lists will be shared ONLY on a need to know basis to ensure privacy of the person volunteering now, later of depending on the need these may be publicized after permission of the person who’s contact is in the list.

– End of Write-up