Students being whisked away in awaiting police vehicles in Quetta: Photo taken from Social media

Web Desk:

Police in Quetta detained around 50 students protesting against online classes in Balochistan on Wednesday. The students were protesting against Online classes outside Quetta Press Club, when police detained them.

Activists of the students’ action committee formed against online classes in Balochistan were also among the detained students. The detained students were shifted to various police stations in the city.

Balochistan minister, Sardar Abdul Rehman Khetran during the provincial assembly session assured that the detained students would be set free by police. However, Balochistan National Party (Mengal), Sanaullah Baloch strongly condemned the arrest of students and termed it against the freedom of expression and education.

Spokesman government of Balochistan, Liaquat Shahwani also took to Twitter and said that detained students would be released soon. He mentioned that the students were detained because of COVID19 and section 144. 

Universities in Balochistan had launched online classes on the instructions of higher education commission after the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. However, students across Balochistan have been protesting against the decision. The Baloch Students Organization (BSO) has challenged the online classes in the Balochistan High Court and mentioned that since most of the areas of Balochistan were deprived of internet facility, therefore, online classes were not practicable in the province.

Petition against Online classes filed in Balochistan High Court (BHC)

It was not immediately known that cases were registered against protesting students or not. Despite repeated attempts to speak to police officers, there was no official response to the arrests.

This is a developing story and we will continue to add as we get more information

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Quetta Voice is an English Daily covering all unfolding political, economic and social issues relating to Balochistan, Pakistan's largest province in terms of area. QV's main focus is on stories related to education, promotion of quality education and publishing reports about out of school children in the province. QV has also a vigilant eye on health, climate change and other key sectors.