Following the release of a new video of kidnapped Vice Chancellor of the Islamia College University Ajmal Khan, the Peshawar University Teachers Association (PUTA) has announced that all public universities will remain shut for an indefinite period.
PUTA President Johar Ali told The Express Tribune that public universities all over Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa will remain closed until the release of the captive professor.
The video, the second in less than a month, shows Khan sitting in front of three masked armed men with a mud wall in its background.
In the video, Khan said that his life was in danger and asked authorities to meet the militants’ demands till November 20 after which he would face death.
The VC said that the government, students and the ANP, should take interest in his release, while stressing that the first video showing that he had been abducted had no impact.
Khan also said the demands of the militants should be accepted by the government; otherwise he will have to face the consequences.
Earlier on October 14, the kidnappers had released another video asking the government to negotiate with the Taliban for Khan’s release.
Khan is one of the most prominent educationists of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and is also a cousin of Awami National Party (ANP) Chief Asfandyar Wali Khan. He was kidnapped from Professor Colony area situated close to the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Agriculture University on September 7.
Earlier militants had kidnapped Kohat University of Science and Technology (KUST) VC Dr Lutfullah Kakakhel.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 8th, 2010.