Thursday May 30, 2024

Iconic human rights activist IA Rehman passes away in Lahore

IA Rehman was a distinguished Lahore-based journalist and had a career spanning over 65 years

By Ummay Farwa
April 12, 2021

Iconic human rights activist and former journalist Ibn Abdur Rehman, or commonly known as IA Rehman, breathed his last on Monday, confirmed his  family.

Rehman was a columnist for the daily Dawn and was actively involved with the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP).

The former journalist was born on September 1930 in Haryana which was then part of British India and now India.

Rehman was a distinguished Lahore-based journalist and had a career spanning over 65 years.

During his career, he had served as the editor-in-chief of the Pakistan Times from 1988-1990. During the break up of East Pakistan, he was working as the managing editor of Urdu daily Azad.

Rehman fiercely opposed the dictatorship of Ziaul Haq from 1978–88 and was working as the executive editor of weekly Viewpoint at the time.

Apart from publishing hundreds of articles and papers, he had authored three books: Jinnah as a Parliamentarian (co-editor), Arts and Crafts of Pakistan, and Pakistan under Siege, a collection of his own columns.

Rehman worked as director of HRCP for two decades and was also the group's secretary general till 31 December, 2016.

As news of his death spread, social media users paid tribute to the human rights defender. 

Politician Afrasiab Khattak noted that Rehman's passing was an "end of an era".

Lawyer Salman Akram Raja said Rehman was poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz's comrade and noted human rights defender Asma Jahangir's guide.  

Academic Ammar Ali Jan noted that Rehman was a "pillar of strength for all activists around the country".

Human rights activist Ali Dayan Hasan said that Rehman will always be with them.

 Activist Usama Khilji noted that Rehman "was the voice of so many voiceless marginalised Pakistanis".