For the last few days, the anti-polio activists are becoming the victims of violence and terrorism across the country. It’s so unfortunate that these concerned individuals and volunteers working to eradicate polio became the victims of this senseless and unforgivable act. We as a nation are indebted to all those who died during this polio eradication campaign.
Farzana, a 14 year girl who stood for a cause, and was voluntarily working for World Health Organization’s (WHO) anti-polio campaign was shot dead by unknown gunman few days back. This little girl was an activist; she did not only raise her voice but she put her passion in practical form which is reflected by her volunteerism towards the cause of polio eradication. The way government gave a blind eye to this incident and is silent over this heinous murder shows the
indifference on behalf of the so called ‘caretakers’ of this country.
This murder of a young innocent girl did ‘not affect the countrymen, the way whole country was moved by Malala’s incident. She was of the same age as the widely celebrated education activist Malala. Silence over one girl and uproar over the other, shows how callous, hypocrite and insensitive we are. Malala was given hype and we all know the reasons. She is a little child, used by political stunt and publicity. Is this indifference because Farzana never met Richard Holbrooke and she was not documented by BBC and her publicity and admiration will not benefit the political motives of the cruel elites?
Thousands of girls and activist die daily, but we even don’t know their names. And where is media? Her murder should be highlighted and given coverage so at least people should know about her and the struggle she was doing. The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government’s coldness and indifference towards Farzana’s assassination and labeling it as “family dispute” and on the other side showering Malala and admiring her experience is really two-faced and dubious. The victims
should be treated equally, why neglecting few and make few gods and goddesses.
Now where are all the so called “women movements” and liberal fascists, was Farzana not the daughter of this nation? Does she deserve our prayers, wishes and sympathies which we laid down in Malala’s feet? For me these two young girls and courageous activists are equivalent, but why our logics and emotions are so double faced?
Farzana at such a young age volunteered for a cause, which is lingering on and on for years. She deserves our praise and tribute for her courage because of the struggle she was carrying on. She considered polio eradication as joint cause, and she battled it on behalf of all the countrymen.
As an ordinary citizen I feel guilty when I think of the families of all the victims of terrorism, as I would never be able to face them. I did ‘not raise their voice and never highlighted their plight. As a nation this is our responsibility to realize the sacrifices made by the victims of terrorism and especially young and innocent activist like Farzana, who died for a cause.
Story first published: 25th December 2012