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Support Amina Masood Janjua for NCHR and stop Enforced Disappearances in Pakistan!

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In every nation and era, a few brave individuals are born who fight for truth, justice and humanity. Like heroes of old, these individuals convert their personal tragedies into a call to action. Instead of becoming sorry victims of fate, they rise to the occasion for the betterment of all humanity.

Mrs. Amina Masood Janjua is one such person.

Born with the soul of an artist, Amina did her masters from art school and graduated as a successful painter. A simple woman by nature, Amina initially shied away from limelight and was content living as a loving mother to three children and a wife to Masood Ahmed Janjua.

However, Amina was suddenly thrust into public life when her husband was abducted by personnel of state security agencies on 30th July, 2005. She went from pillar to post to get her husband released. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months and months into years but the state obstinately refused to release her husband or even to come out clean about what had happened to him. Struggling against the odds, to this day, Amina refuses to give up the fight for the recovery of her husband. Going further, she has successfully converted her personal tragedy into a powerful, motivating force for serving all humanity. In the fourteen years since her husband's state-enforced disappearance, Amina has emerged as the resilient face of Pakistan’s Missing Persons Movement.

As Amina’s reputation for sincerely and courageously representing Missing Persons grew, families of thousands of Missing Persons from all over the country began approaching her for help. To serve the needs of these poor and uneducated victim families, Amina set up a small organization called Defense of Human Rights Pakistan (DHRP). This little organization has slowly emerged as the nerve center of a nationwide movement against enforced disappearances. Amina and her colleagues at DHRP have by now represented more than 2660 cases of enforced disappearance on different platforms including 749 case before the Supreme Court of Pakistan. As a direct result of her struggle, over 950 innocent Missing Persons have been released and reunited with their families.

Over these last fourteen years, Amina has also organized hundreds of protest rallies. She has been arrested, beaten and detained by those in power but has never accepted defeat. Besides being a true pillar of support for all the missing persons of Pakistan, Amina has also negotiated the release of Pakistani prisoners from foreign jails of Thailand, Egypt, Afghanistan, China and Saudi Arabia.

I have had the honor of collaborating with Mrs. Amina Janjua for more than a decade. I can personally vouch for the sincerity and dedication with which she is defending the rights of Missing Persons, regardless of their ethnicity, religion, sect, ideology or creed. I can also vouch for her expertise, competence and rich experience in this area of human rights. This is why, today, I am publicly nominating Mrs. Amina Masood Janjua for appointment as a Member of the National Commission of Human Rights (NCHR). 

For those who may not know, the NCHR is an official body created by the Parliament of Pakistan through the NCHR Act 2012 for the purpose of curbing human rights abuses. Its has Members from each one of the provinces of Pakistan and also a Chairperson. The Members are appointed by the Federal Government in consultation with Parliament. The Commission has vast powers, somewhat akin to the powers of the High Courts in writ jurisdiction .

We all know that Amina does not need this title. Her credentials are greater than that. For over 14 years, she has fought perhaps the most dangerous of all human rights cases in the country, without an iota of official support or recognition. But this is precisely why having someone like her serve on the National Commission of Human Rights would mean so much for human rights. 

I urge you to sign this petition now. We must urge Prime Minister Imran Khan and our representatives in Parliament to appoint Mrs. Amina Janjua as a Member of the National Commission of Human Rights. This is the change we need!