Education is an acquisition of learning, and it is necessary for everyone in the world. It is a basic right of every human being that he/she should get the education. Our world is so modernized and global but sadly in many parts of the world today education is banned, and many extremist people do not allow their children to get the education. It is a sad and true reality of our world that mostly girls and women do not get and avail the opportunity of education as compare to men. Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani girl who also became the victim of this extremism that women do not have to get the education. Malala belonged to a Pashtun family in Swat valley of Pakistan. Pakistan is a Muslim country in the continent of Asia. Malala is a Muslim girl, and she became the victim of an extremist group named Taliban. Some men of Taliban attacked Malala and shot her in her head, but she survived and left Pakistan. Her fault was only that she was an advocate of women educational rights. Malala’s challenging life experiences drove her to create a variety towards women’s rights matter, because of her family and friends support.
Malala was born in 1997 in Mingora, Swat Valley of Pakistan. She belongs to a Muslim Pashtun family. Her father is an educated person, and his dream was to build a school. He accomplished his dream and started running a school in Swat valley. Malala is greatly influenced by her father from her early childhood. Several changes occurred in Pakistan when the 9/11 attacks happened in the United States of America. The extremist group named Taliban started to attack the national places and people to force the Sharia Law on it. They are the most extremist and brutal group of individuals in Pakistan, and this group is led by an extremist man named Fazlullah. They applied many rules on the Swat valley as the TV, DVD or CD was not allowed in the region and women have to do Pardah (Islamic Veil for women and girls). They also said and applied the rule that the girls should not get the education, and they do not have to get the education. The rule of not getting the education was intolerable for Malala, and she did not accept it. She and her father started to protest against this rule, but one day some men shot her in her head to kill her. She survived and left Pakistan, now she is an activist, and she also got a Nobel Price on her bravery.
Many sources motivated Malala to speak out about this cause, but the major source was her father. He always encouraged her to get the education as much as she can. He believed that lack of education is the root of many problems and his ideology and thinking inspired Malala . After the attack on Malala, all her family left Pakistan and never returned. Her father is a brave man, and when he was in Pakistan, he continuously spoke against the rules of Fazullah. She emphasized greatly the character of her father in her book. She admired her father and stated that “Education had been a great gift for him (Ziauddin). He believed that lack of education was the root of all the Pakistan’s problems. Ignorance allowed politicians to fool people and bad administrators to be reelected. He believed schooling should be available for all, rich and poor, boys and girls” (41). It is a fact the education and schooling should be available for very human being in the world, and this will enhance the factor of equality among the people of the world.
Her father joined a group named Qomi Jirga, to challenge the extreme rules of Fazullah. He was the spokesperson of that group and encouraged the people to reject the rules set by Taliban and Fazullah. It was a good step taken by the father of Malala that he was brave enough to challenge the extremist group of Taliban within the territory of Taliban. Malala states that “My father would say to me, ‘Any organization which works for peace, I will join. If you want to resolve a dispute or come out from conflict, the very first thing is to speak the truth. If you have a headache and tell the doctor you have a stomachache, how can the doctor help? You must speak the truth. The truth will abolish fear.” (139)
The bravery of Ziauddin is adopted, implemented and followed by her daughter Malala, and she bravely fought for the women education rights in Pakistan, and now she is an activist and working for the global women education rights.
Malala remained focused on her mission because she believed that her nation needs some true role models and the place of missing role models influenced her to focus on her mission. Her faith helped her so much that she trusted in her God and her abilities. The death of Benazir Bhutto (the first female head of the Pakistani state) gave a shock to all Pakistani women leaders and activists. She is a true role model personality for Malala. Benazir was a great politician, and her goal was to fight for the women right’s in Pakistan and she wanted to fight against the forces of Muslim extremism in the country. Malala influenced with the great personality and traits of Benazir Bhutto.
Malala was also inspired by her mother. She realized the importance of education when her mother told her that she regrets her decision about not going to school (26). Her mother got her primary education from a local school, and her family wanted that she should learn further and join the secondary school studies. But she realized that all her female cousins were stopped their studies and stayed at their homes. She became jealous of them, and she also prefers to stay at home and not going to school for further education. When she married to the father of Malala Ziauddin Yousafzai, she realized that her decision was wrong. She always used to tell Malala about her stupid decision, and now she regrets her decision badly. She told Malala that she wanted that Malala will learn and gain knowledge of education.
The rules, regulations, and distractions made by the extremist group of Taliban greatly affected Malala and the other people of the Swat valley. The extremists demanded and implemented my rules and regulations on the people of Swat forcefully, and one of those rules was that girls must not be educated. This rule was unacceptable for Malala above every unfair act. She decided to raise her voice against that brutal rule along with her father and continued their mission on a level achievable by them. During all these circumstances, the army invaded the area when the situation got extremely worse after 9/11 incident and along with a lot of people Malala’s family had to shift from Swat for almost three months.
They came back when army claimed the area to be wiped up and cleaned from Taliban, but after a short period, it was unrevealed that army’s perception was wrong. The area was not free of Taliban. They became to target people who stood against them one by one and Malala’s father was aware of the fact that sooner or later he would be attacked as well. The fear became a reality and one day when Malala was on her way back to home on her school bus, a Taliban stopped the bus asking for Malala by her name. Being a brave person as she is, when she lifted her hand as to made her prominent among other silent students, less than within a second, she was shot in her head by the same Taliban.
Malala was lucky that her head did not go in severe hemorrhage and stroke did not happen at once that could have taken her life at the spot. She was immediately taken to an army hospital when doctors concluded that she had to moved to a better place for her immediate treatment if she was to survive because she was shot in her head and every little second was determinant for her life at that time. With the support of all the prayers for her, she miraculously managed to survive as a result of proper treatment given to her at the time. The memory of Malala was badly affected after this incident (123-124).
The points which make Malala’s story very inspiring and impressive is her protests against the policies of Fazlullah and its impacts on him as he agreed to reconsider his policies towards women. It was a huge step and victory indeed. Her protests and continuous efforts forced and cornered Fazlullah to rethink about his policies and to modify them according to what is true and authentic and what is a part of Islam. Malala protested at a time when it was necessary to protect herself, but she sacrificed her security and continued to write against policies of Taliban when the situation was very worse in Swat. She also pseudonym her writing just for the cause that she may directly not get caught but it did not work in last. Because of efforts of Malala, Fazullah agreed to lift the ban on girls who attend the schools (166).
The ultimate mission of Malala was and still is to educate the women around the globe and to help remove the obstacles that are in the way of education of women all around the world especially in Asian countries and his own land Pakistan. She states in her book that “Let us pick up our books and our pens,’ I said. ‘They are our most powerful weapons. One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.” (310).
She started her work by focusing on the girls in Pakistan, but her target includes all the girls and women in the world. Her target audience in her book is all the girls and women around the globe. The ultimate purpose behind her writings from the very start of his campaign was to educate and inspire girls with the knowledge that how important they are and how important is the education for them to get.
The most influential people of Malala’s life are her father, mother, teachers, friends and her role models characters. All these personalities influenced her decisions and made her a great personality. These people helped her so much and added so much value to her personality. Malala is now an education activist, and she got the Nobel Prize for her work. She is one of the most influential people lists of London 2015.
Malala encouraged the fact that pen is better than guns and wars. Women should not be stopped to get the education by anyone. She was greatly influenced by her father who is an educated person and helps Malala in every part of her life. He is the most influential role model for her. She and her father started a campaign and said that it should be the right of every human being to get the education. Malala protested against the extreme rules of Taliban and rejected them. She believes that it is the right of every girl to get education and knowledge.
In result, Taliban shot her, but she survived and became the most influential person in the world at a very young age. She bravely fought with the scars and pain of her body and head. She showed the strongest behavior of a girl that every girl in the world should learn. She has an excellent influential character, and she is now working globally for the education of girls all around the world. She stated in her book about education that “Peace in every home, every street, every village, every country – this is my dream. Education for every boy and every girl in the world. To sit down on a chair and read my books with all my friends at school is my right. To see each and every human being with a smile of happiness is my wish.” (313).
Yousafzai, Malala. I Am Malala. 1st ed. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2015. Print.