Against all odds: Lahore woman wins PhD from Srinagar

Published: December 15, 2013
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Nadia is the first Pakistani woman to attain a doctorate from Kashmir University. PHOTO: FILE

Nadia is the first Pakistani woman to attain a doctorate from Kashmir University. PHOTO: FILE

After a difficult visa process, bouts of violence and four years of hard work, Nadia Mehr Din has completed her PhD in history from the University of Kashmir, Srinagar. She is the first Pakistani woman to have completed the doctorate from Indian-administered Kashmir under the South Asia Foundation (SAF) programme, report Kashmiri newspapers.

Her dissertation was titled “The Development of Science, Technology, Arts and Language during the Sultanate Period in Kashmir”, under the supervision of Prof Gulshan Majeed, Institute of Kashmir Studies and she received her degree on December 9.

In an interview to Greater Kashmir, Nadia said, “I have been here for four years. And the love and affection people gave to me, I can never forget.” She is in awe of Kashmir and its beauty. “In Pakistan, we don’t refer to Kashmir as Kashmir, but as Jannat-e-Benazir or paradise.”

When residents found out that she was a Pakistani, they “poured so much love and affection”, she told the Rising Kashmir daily.

She was also surprised to see the overwhelming support for the Pakistani cricket team.

However, Nadia’s endeavour to go to Indian-administered Kashmir and attain a doctorate was no easy feat. The visa process was so difficult that she was only allowed to visit her home in Lahore twice in the four years. She was also caught in between some stone pelting in Hazratbal and witnessed the many shutdowns and curfews. “But despite all this, the standard of education in Srinagar is so high,” she said.

Nadia dedicates her PhD to her cousin, brother and the late sister, Asiya, who had helped her a lot during the bureaucratic hurdles in securing the visa.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 15th, 2013.

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Reader Comments (6)

  • Alann
    Dec 15, 2013 - 11:47AM

    “Against all odds: Lahore woman wins PhD from Srinagar”

    Wins? She’s didn’t win it, she earned it with dedication and hard work. Congratulations to you, Ms. Nadia Mehr Din.
    On a side note,
    I’d like to see some day some university in “Azad” Kashmir letting a woman, that too a Hindu, to study in their University and earn a PhD or even any other degree/doctorate, and with peace & love, without getting her raped/converted/killed for being a Hindu and/or a woman.

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  • Muhgami
    Dec 18, 2013 - 8:09PM

    You’re always welcome again. For Pakistanis, Kashmir should be their second home. You’re always welcome to visit our country -Kashmir.

    Love,
    a Kashmiri

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  • ZEESHAN RAZA
    Dec 18, 2013 - 10:28PM

    congratulations !Recommend

  • Nomi
    Dec 20, 2013 - 9:15PM

    @Alann:

    Excuse me …but kashmir is majority muslim not hindu

    she did her phd degree among muslims not hindus in Kashmir University.

    What exactly is the basis of your rhetoric?

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  • akshia
    Dec 24, 2013 - 4:09PM

    @Nomi:
    What exactly is your problem madam?

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  • Kaz
    Jan 9, 2014 - 8:53PM

    She went as part of a SAARC scholarship, there was an article about it.

    A Kashmiri student also had a SAARC scholarship. Ishrat Naveed, from Budgam, went and studied plant biochemistry and molecular biology in Islamabad, and his professor took away his samples, faced torture, threats and humiliation and called him an Indian agent.

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