LAHORE: The Punjab University administration has expelled 13 students belonging to Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) and four students from Pashtun and Baloch organisations in the first phase of disciplinary action. The pupils were accused of creating a law and order situation on campus on January 22.
The disciplinary committee has also initiated the second phase of the inquiry while issuing notices to 30 more students on the basis of evidence.
It is for the first time in recent history that the Punjab University punished students involved in creating unrest by expelling them.
On the instructions of PU Vice Chancellor Dr Muhammad Zakria Zakar, the Disciplinary Committee, consisting of senior professors, maintained high standards of justice, objectivity and fair play. The decision in the first phase of the inquiry was based on foolproof evidence which was corroborated by many types of material. This included the recording of surveillance cameras, eyewitnesses and documentary records.
The expelled students belonging to IJT are Osama Ejaz, Muneeb Farooq, Rahat Ali, Sikandar Kakar, Muhammad Uneeb Afzal, Ahmed Zakriya, Abdul Baseer, Osama Bin Shafaat, Hidayatullah, Samiullah Khan, Zeeshan Ashraf, Mian Arsalan and Arifur Rehman.
The expelled students belonging to Pashtun and Baloch organisations are Asfand Yar, Alamgeer Khan, Naeem Wazir and Paiuddin Khan, while their six students were rusticated which includes Muazam Ali Shah, Maqbool Lehri, Salman Wazir, Salman Ahmed, Waris Khan and Ashraf Khan. A warning was also issued to a student named Ahmed Khan.
Penalties of Rs10,000, coupled with three-month probations, were imposed on five students, including Ajab Khan, Abbas, Abdul Salam, Dolat Khan and Rehan Khan. Two ex-students, Bilal Ahmed and Dawood Khan, one each from both sides, were declared persona non grata by the disciplinary committee.
The disciplinary committee has also banned entry of expelled and rusticated students in the university.
The PU spokesman said that some of the students produced fabricated documents before the disciplinary committee to avoid disciplinary action. However, they were shown evidence regarding their involvement in the incident by the committee members.
Out of 34 students who have issued notices in the first phase, only three students named Shahid Nawaz, Ahmed Junaid and Muaz Ahmed were exonerated since their involvement in the clash could not be established through the available evidence.
The PU spokesman said the committee took extreme caution not to harm any student who was not involved in the incident. He said the administration also provided the involved students with an opportunity, as per university calendar, to file an appeal within fifteen days against the decision to the vice chancellor.
The PU spokesperson said that the administration was committed not to tolerate any pressure from a student organisation. He warned that any students, who would resort to any unlawful reaction against the decision of the committee, would be disciplined action as per the law since the inquiry in the same incident is in the second phase to take disciplinary action against more students who would be found involved in the incident.
He added that the administration is also making all-out efforts to ensure peace, tranquility and rule of law on campus.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 18th, 2018.