Malala Yousufzai: A year after Taliban shot her

By Supriya Jha | Last Updated: Sunday, October 12, 2014 - 09:48

Supriya Jha

Islamabad: Today is October 9 – the day when three Talibani bullets went straight through the head of Pakistani teen activist Malala Yousufzai last year while she was travelling back home from school. She was just a simple teen girl with an extraordinary spirit of speaking up for education back then. Little did she know that a bullet will bring a sea of change in her life and one year hence she will be known worldwide as Malala Yousufzai – the youngest person to be nominated for Nobel Peace Prize, a girl who gets to make a speech at the UN on her birthday and a teenager who gets invited to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen. She also released her memoir on October 08, titled – "I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban", co-written by Christina Lamb. A year has passed since the fateful day when she was shot at by Taliban for writing against them in a BBC Urdu blog under the pseudonym of Malala Yousufzai. The threat remains as the Taliban has reiterated its intent to attack her for her ‘attacks on Islam’. But Malala’s spirit remains unshaken as she marches on her path as a harbinger of education. In her autobiography, Malala has recounted the Taliban horror, of the time of the militant rule in Swat valley, the moment she was shot, and also interesting details like how her father Ziauddin briefly considered becoming a jihadist. Describing the Taliban attack she writes, “My friends say he fired three shots, one after another”. "By the time we got to the hospital my long hair and Moniba`s lap were full of blood." The memoir presents an account of the brutal Taliban rule in Swat valley and also her new life in England, where she feels homesickness and a sort of cultural shock which she and mainly her mother felt on seeing less-clad girls walking alone or socialising openly with men in restaurant s or other public places. But she also praises UK and writes, "people follow the rules, they respect policemen and everything happens on time," she writes. "I see women having jobs we couldn`t imagine in Swat”. Malala knows she is on Taliban target but this does not worry her as she says, “everyone knows they will die one day”. "I was spared for a reason -- to use my life for helping people," she writes. "So I should do whatever I want to do," Malala feels. Malala is still like any other teengaer, who counts Justin Bieber and ‘Twilight’ novel among her favourites. She idolises Benazir Bhutto and also wants to join politics so that all girls in Pakistan can have unrestrained access to education. And soon, who knows, she may be the youngest person to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.



First Published: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 - 17:23

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