Karachi, Feb.24: Prominent Indian scholars Irfan Habib, Subashni Ali and Saeed Naqvi have been denied Pakistani visas, and hence are unlikely to participate in the World Social Forum in Karachi. The three Indians are among 17 intellectuals who have been denied permission to visit Pakistan, the Nation and The News reports.
Fahimuzaman Khan, a spokesman of the Pakistan Organising Committee, World Social Forum told reporters here on Saturday that Leila Khalid, Dr. Mustafa Barghouti and Jamal Juma from Palestine, Dr. Ali Fayyad, and Professor Dr. Mohsen Moh'd Suleiman Saleh from Lebanon, Ban Ibrahim, and Dr. Kamal Majid, Haifa Zangana, Professor Dr. Saad Naji Jawad from Iraq, eminent historian Irfan Habib and Subashni Ali, and Saeed Naqvi from India, Professor Dr. Georges Nicola Jabbour and Prof. Dr. Ali Atassi from Syria, Cindy Sheehan from the United States, Rakhsha Banietmad from Iran and Professor Dr. Mundhar Adhmi were denied visa by security agencies on the plea that following parliamentary elections on February 18 the political climate in Pakistan was not conducive. He said the distinguished guests were invited to participate in a Public Assembly and the Conference on West Asia.
The proposed public assembly and the conference is now likely to take place in March this year.