By Islamuddin Sajid
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AA) - Pakistan’s leading lawyer and human rights activist Asma Jahangir passed away on Sunday. She was 66.
She suffered a cardiac arrest and was shifted to a hospital in Lahore city where she was pronounced dead, local broadcaster Geo News reported.
Outspoken Jahangir was known as a defender of democracy and human rights in the country, always speaking out against military rule. Since its independence from the British in 1947, the military has ruled Pakistan for 30 years.
She was jailed in 1983 for participating in a pro-democracy movement against then military ruler Gen. Muhammad Ziaul Haq.
In 2007, she was placed under house arrest for participating in a movement to restore judges removed by then military ruler Gen. Pervez Musharraf.
She was the first woman president of Pakistan’s Supreme Court lawyers association.
She also served as the head of nonprofit Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.
Born in 1952, in Lahore, she completed her bachelor's degree from Punjab University and went to the U.S., Canada and Switzerland to pursue her higher legal study.
In her lifetime, she was awarded with prestigious awards in the country including the Hilal-i-Imtiaz and Sitara-i-Imtiaz in recognition of her services.
President Mamnoon Husain and Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi expressed grief over her demise.