When terrorists took over Swat in 2007, one of the major changes that took place was the ban on education for girls. That is when Malala Yousafzai, a 13 year old girl from Mingora realized how important education was for her.
Before this incident, Malala did not know why she had to go to school.
She reminisces those days as being ‘black days’ of their lives. She could not understand why they were being terrorised and especially, why no one was doing anything about it. Those were times when no one would speak up against terrorism as it was considered a very big thing.
Malala, however, chose to speak her mind to the media. She told her father that she wanted to give an interview as she wanted an opportunity to reveal to the world the injustice they were facing. She gave an interview and gradually she turned this into a routine.
She transferred her thoughts to paper like one would in a diary and started sending these entries to the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). Malala wrote the diary for four months and poured her heart out.
Malala’s struggle earned her not only peace in Swat and education for girls, but also an unexpected reward. She was presented with the National Peace Award by Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani for her struggle against terrorism.
Malala is the first student to be presented with this award. Gilani on the occasion said, “This award will be presented every year to youngsters possessing extraordinary skills”.
To add to the honour, an award in her name was introduced on a national level which would go down in history as the Malala Peace Award.
“I wanted to be able to attend school again. I wished for peace. The only reward I wanted was peace in Swat. I didn’t want any other award, nor did I think I would get one”, said Malala.
The video above was shot by Think Twice Pakistan.