ISLAMABAD - Arsalan Bilal, a student of Bahria University who has been on indefinite hunger strike since April 6 to protest his rustication, declared that he is being threatened and pressurised to end his strike and if anything happens to him, the university and naval intelligence officials will be responsible for that.
On Monday talking to media persons he produced evidence in support of his claim that he was discriminated against and victimised by Bahria University’s administration. According to him he has been receiving calls from unknown numbers to pressurise him either to end hunger strike or protest somewhere else instead in doing all this front of the university campus.
He claimed if he is harmed three officials of the university including Rector Admiral (Retd) Shahid Iqbal, Director Campus Commodore (Retd) Anjum Sarfraz and Head Department of Humanities and Social Sciences Dr Huma Haque and naval intelligence officials will be responsible.
He said that Islamabad police on Sunday last arrested him and released him after eight hours on the condition that he would not protest in front of the university. He maintained, “Though I have been released on the condition that I will not protest in front of the university, I will take the risk of protesting at the same place and if anything happens to me in any way, the university administration will be responsible for that.”
He informed that police had arrested him over a complaint filed by the university giving a reason that he was violating section 144 of Pakistan Penal Code even though there were only three people including him at the hunger strike camp. According to him he was taken to Margalla Police Station around 9:30 am on Sunday and kept in interrogation room. He was kept in illegal detention without the registration of an FIR against him. According to him one police official, ASI Fakhar Abbas, clearly mentioned that ‘’higher authorities’’ want Arsalan to not to be released to bar him from protesting in front of the campus.
The student also alleged that some officials from intelligence agencies also came and took his pictures. ‘They suggested me to resolve the issue through negotiations but after exhausting all the options I have been compelled to resort to hunger strike which I will not end till the acceptance of demands’ he added.
Bahria University had rusticated Bilal, who is an undergraduate student of International Relations at the university, for threatening faculty members by forwarding a poem of Faiz Ahmad Faiz. The university had also declared Arsalan Bilal “psychologically unstable”. After that he went on hunger strike against his alleged victimisation at the hands of the University administration. He believes he has been victimised for questioning governing issues, the role of ex-naval officials and certain faculty members’ policies in the university.
However, the university administration in an issued statement has alleged that Arslan Bilal after failure in his midterm Research Seminar went into a ‘threat mode’ and threatened his faculty members.  And the Disciplinary Committee that found him guilty on the basis of sufficient evidence recommended rustication of the student from the university for spring semester 2012. But the student has denied the charges.