‘Incrimination attempt’: Anti-army slogans chalked on Punjab University wall

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–Pashtun students term incident as an ‘attempt to malign’ their community

–PU spokesperson assures probe into matter, suggests someone must’ve done it for ‘fun’

LAHORE: Amid the ongoing row between Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba (IJT) and Pashtun students of the Punjab University (PU), anti-army wall chalking has appeared in a varsity underpass, which the Pashtun students claim is an attempt to “incriminate” them.

As per the details, a wall of the PU Student Teacher Centre underpass near Hostel No 1 was vandalised on late Sunday night by a group of unidentified persons, who inscribed slogans against the military and spray-painted those in favour of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM).

The picture making rounds over the internet shows an anti-military slogan inscribed on a PU wall.

With the Pashtun students claiming it was an attempt to malign them and the Manzoor Pashteen-led PTM, the PU spokesperson has assured a probe into the matter.

‘ATTEMPT TO INCRIMINATE’:

“None of the students affiliated with the PTM or any Pashtun students’ organisations have anything to do with it,” a Pashtun student of the varsity told Pakistan Today and added that it was but an attempt to “deface” the image of their student organisation.

He said that a group of Pashtun students had already approached the PU chief security officer and informed him of the attempt to incriminate a certain group of students on the basis of ethnicity. “He has trusted our word and assured us of bringing the culprits to justice,” added the student.

‘NOT A SERIOUS ISSUE’:

PU spokesperson Khurram Shehzad, on the other hand, said the matter did not appear to be “that serious”. “Everyone loves the armed forces and no one can even think of doing something like this. Someone must have done it for fun,” he added.

However, he said, the varsity administration was oblivious of the incident earlier and now that it had been brought to notice, a strict action would be taken against those involved.

“We have obtained the CCTV footage of the incident and will initiate an action against the accused soon after their identification. No one would be allowed to disrupt peace on campus.”

He further said that the slogan had been erased by the authorities.

To a question, Khurram rejected the claims that the incumbent PU vice chancellor was against any group of students. “He [the vice chancellor] is not biased towards any organisation and certainly not against the Pashtun or Baloch students,” he said.

PU CLASHES:

Earlier this year, PU became a battlefield as clashes erupted between two student unions — IJT and Baloch Pashtun Students Union — soon after the Jamiat-sponsored Pioneer Festival.

Following the incident, as many as 37 students were suspended by the PU administration. The university later announced that it would admit only those students from Balochistan who were recommended by the provincial government.

Ever since the clashes, a continuous dispute has been observed between the two groups of students.