Parveen Rehman laid to rest
‘Nobody safe, least of all humanitarians’
Karachi: Orangi Pilot Project Director Parveen Rehman was laid to rest amid charged emotions and a thousand questions in the minds of her mourners. Her funeral was attended by people she worked for, social activists, planners, architects and students, whom she affected with her vision and dedication to improve the living standards of squatter settlements.
Apart from family, people came to attend her funeral from all over Pakistan. They expressed their shock and anger at the inefficiency of the system.
Later, the students from the Visual Studies Department, University of Karachi (KU), arranged a protest at the Karachi Press Club to honour her memory. They were the last ones to attend her ‘Green Architecture’ class at the department on Tuesday, March 12. She had been teaching at different architecture institutes for a long time, to impart her knowledge on 'how to be a socially responsible architect'.
Her former and current students from KU, NED University, Dawood College of Engineering and Technology, Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture, as well as Chairman Pakistan Council of Town Planners and Architects Sikandar Hayat Khan, Institute of Architects Pakistan members Shahab Ghani, Arshad Farooqi, Ashraf Shanjar, Tariq Hasan, Arif Changezi and others attended the protest.
Students said that it was a matter of great concern for each and every person, and nobody was safe, including a person who served humanity.
They claimed the only reason for her murder was that she did not surrender to the land mafia, and always stood by her principles, that were to help and serve the people. Students were holding placards with slogans against the land mafia and the apathy of the government.
"We know our system is corrupt, but one day we will fix it," quoted her students on a placard. The students said they were determined to take her cause forward and would stay firm in their decisions as she was.
"The government should hold accountable her murderers and the murderers of the people who have been targeted in the past in such cases," they claimed.
The community of architects and town planners requested everyone in attendance to be a part of the protest planned for Sunday, March 17 at the Quaid's Mausoleum to show solidarity with her cause, and determination despite all odds. "We will continue to demand for justice, for as long as it takes," said the students in unison while chanting slogans against land-mafia.
Many people who were at the press club, including Awami Workers Party, Shirkat Gah, National Students Federation and trade unionists joined the students to condemn the brutal protest of Architect Parveen Rehman.
Advocate Zia Awan pays tribute: Madadgar National Helpline founder and renowned human rights activist Advocate Zia Ahmed Awan paid rich tributes to the slain icon of social work Parveen Rahman and demanded the government to arrest the offenders and provide satisfactory protection to social activists. Praising Rehman’s contributions for the betterment of poor, he said on Thursday that she devoted her life to the development of vulnerable residents of Orangi Town through Orangi Pilot Project. She made enthusiastic efforts, and took steps to combat violence and accelerating crime rate that highly, affected the lives of locals. staff report