The twinkle in her eyes made me sit back to watch her talk. It was about two years back, to be precise; an interview with Malala Yousufai was on air on BBC. She was just a budding little girl, may be, of 13 years. I sat through till the end, little realizing, that, this very girl would be the target by the Talibans. The zeal and perseverance showed on her face as she was answering all the questions. What amazed me is her simplicity and determination. She is not just intelligent but beautiful. Her eyes are so expressive. She is exceptional! I instantly took a keen interest to know her more.
A Pakistani school girl from the Swat Province, Malala started off early at the age of 11 for women’s right to education.
As the camera rolled to their humble house, I saw a glimpse of the man who backed this sweet girl. A sturdy young gentleman with ever smiling face, any child would be proud to have him as his \her father. An educationist, poet and an activist for girls’ right to education, Ziauddin Yousafzai was little known to the world. He was introduced as Malala’s father in the interview, a rare breed among the staunch fundamentalist ruled parts of Pakistan where the talibans strongly oppose women education. I salute this man who gave voice to Malala.
The Talibans- the fundamentalists from Pashtun are condemned internationally for their brutal treatment on women. Some fringes of Pakistan still live in terror where a section of the people support the Talibans. It came as a bolt from the blue when news of Taliban’s attack on Malala scrolled on television as the breaking news! It was in October 2012 .News spread like wild-fire. The bullet that hit her brain was successfully removed by Pakistani Doctors. She remained unconscious for few days after which she had to be shifted to England for further rehabilitation.As surgeons said she was just millimetres from death,as the bullet grazed her brain. She was already a star in her own right. The Taliban changed her destiny further by their cruel bullets and made her a leading light for the oppressed young women of her country as well as the world.
With pouring support from around the globe, she found place to speak her mind at the UN. She made one of the most powerful speeches and saw her parents sitting among the audience, with her mother’s teary eyes and a smiling proud father and her very innocent brother too. “They thought that the bullets would silence us, but they failed. And out of that silence came thousands of voices,” Was her opening speech.
Check out the video clip:
She spends most of her time reading books and in a period of a year or so, we saw a major transformation in her, a very matured person. Her father is always beside her in all invitations. The latest was her visit with the Duke of Edinburgh. She couldn’t contain her giggles when the Duke made a joke on how the children are forced to school in Britain.
It is a great achievement for a girl of 16 to be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize . We see in her a teenage campaigner walking in the way for a great reformer.
photo : google