“I am Malala” is not just a catchphrase, it’s an initiative launched by United Nations to bequeath the girl child with the basic right of getting education. Malala Yousafzai is just a 14 year old teenager with no extra-ordinary background but today she is the global face of struggle for “Girl’s right to education”, not because she is taking out morcha’s and doing fast-unto-death to hog limelight but because of her naive valour to shun the fear of Talibani’s to get hold of what was her all the way- “right to education”.
For those who don’t remember, Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani girl from the Swat valley region who was shot in her neck and the head a month back in an assassination attempt by a talibani goon. Why? Simple, she just wanted to go to school and study. What many of us took as granted in our childhoods, is a per day crusade for the girls of that region. The talibani extremists of Swat valley considers girl’s education a “sin” and raid the houses in Malala’s town ,Mingora, to find girl’s in possession of books.
Malala decided not to live her life their way, and was shot. The girl came into international limelight after she campaigned for girl’s right to education and wrote a diary having an account of talibani extremism for BBC urdu service in 2009 when her hometown was in utter control of the Talibani. Since the malicious attack on her, she has become “the global symbol of every girl’s right to education” in the words of United Nations secretary General, Ban ki- moon.
The “Pride of Swat”, as the people in Swat like to call her, is inspiring and instilling many across the globe including her fellow countrymen who remained mute spectators to the violent transgressions of the talibani. She is the spirited and audacious icon for the otherwise frightened and misled youth of Pakistan. The Pakistani administration also woke up finally from century-long sleep and said that, “they will adopt new measures to get every child into school by 2015. Malala, spurred a movement which is fuelled by her innocent blood and was long due in countries like Pakistan who, according to “2012 Global Monitoring Report on Education for all”, will not be able to achieve the target of putting every child in school by 2015 and girls are the more deprived of them. Malala’s guts instigated 2 million people of Pakistan to sign a petition in her honour and demand for free and compulsory education in Pakistan for all the children irrespective of their gender, which was presented to the Pakistani
President, Mr. Zardari by Mr. Gordon Brown, and the UN special envoy for global education. Mr. Brown supported Malala’s quest by saying, “Malala’s dreams represent what is best about Pakistan. Three million girls should not be denied their right to schooling any longer. ” Malala is recovering from the wounds of the bullets steadily but her dreams are spreading rapidly amongst the youth, the international bodies, the Pakistani administration backed up by the wholesome courage of her efforts.
May a new sun rise in the Swat valley and the likely places soon ,which will not be shadowed by the blood of innocent girls, who just share Malala’s dream as put in her own words, “I felt hurt on opening my wardrobe and seeing my uniform, school bag and geometry box. Boy’s schools are opening tomorrow. But the Taliban have banned girl’s education. ” The question which keeps on haunting is’ “is it so difficult to fulfil these little dreams? ”