IJT’s controversial convention

The Islami Jamiat-i-Talaba (IJT), student wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), is notorious for using intimidation tactics to get what it wants. This was seen once again when the IJT held a three-day All Pakistan General Convention in Punjab University (PU) despite opposition from the PU administration, faculty and students. In order to make its presence felt, the IJT even disrupted traffic at various roads in Lahore, causing great discomfort to the citizens. The IJT was not remorseful at causing several-hour-long traffic jams in the city. In fact, this was done to prove to the public that the convention was attended by ‘huge crowds’. This is in line with the IJT’s past practices. Disruption, harassment, senseless violence are all a norm for the IJT.

The PU administration was intimidated by the IJT goons but when they complained to the Punjab government and the police, instead of coming to their assistance, the authorities ‘advised’ the PU administration to avoid a confrontation. Reports indicate that the Punjab Police made a written agreement with the IJT as per the instructions of the Punjab government, which allowed the IJT to hold its convention. The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is known to have a soft corner for the right wing, religious and extremist groups. Thus it was no surprise that the PML-N’s Punjab government just sat with its hands folded while the IJT flexed its muscles.

By eroding the authority of PU’s vice chancellor, administration and faculty, the Punjab government has undermined an educational institution’s independence. Over the last 40 years or so, the IJT has used terror, violence and intimidation to hold one of the oldest universities of the subcontinent hostage to its right wing agenda. In the past the IJT may have had the support of military dictators like General Ziaul Haq and General Pervez Musharraf and even civilian regimes like that of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, when the IJT was originally unleashed in PU at the behest of then Governor Punjab Ghulam Mustafa Khar, but now the incumbent Punjab government has also lent its support to this militant student organisation. Instead of mollycoddling the IJT and its ilk, the Punjab government should support the PU administration against the IJT’s highhandedness.

(my editorial in Daily Times)


You are writing some thing which goes directly to my memory as I read. But you didn't mentioned that how will we stop IJT in PU? If you could enlighten IJT's past and the harassment, torture and terror applied against the students of PU.

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