LAHORE: The Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA) President Salahuddin Ahmed Advocate Tuesday said “it is ridiculous to say that Asma Jahangir Conference was held with foreign funding unless you prove that the funding was done by some anti-Pakistan forces”. Discrediting the conference by saying that it was foreign funded was regrettable, he added.
Speaking at a private news channel programme, he said there was no secret foreign funding for the event. It was funded by the European Union and other donors from Europe and the donors’ names were duly listed as sponsors of the programme.
The senior lawyer said that the government of Pakistan also organises such conferences with the funding given by international organisations. He said that Pakistan judiciary’s ‘Access to Justice programme’ was also launched with $350 million foreign funding, and all its infrastructure was established with the foreign money. He said that programme had been continuing for the last 10-15 years.
Salahuddin Ahmed said that Pakistan government’s health and education programmes are carried out with foreign funding also. He said that when Prime Minister Imran Khan brings money from Saudi Arabia and China, if that was not foreign funding.
“As far as the question of an absconder’s speech at the event is concerned, I have seen various lectures were delivered by Julian Assange at the US universities, though he is also an absconder,” the lawyer leader said. Julian Assange is an Australian editor, publisher and activist, who founded WikiLeaks in 2006. “This is not something unusual and there was no legal bar on it,” added Salahuddin Ahmad.