Young women rights activist Hinna Khan, who hails from the same area of Pakistan where 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban, has received a threatening call from the Taliban that she is next on their hit list.
Like Malala, who is under treatment in the UK, the 17-year-old Hinna dared to stand up against the Taliban’s dictate against girls education and rights. Khan, daughter of a leader of Pakistan’s prominent political party, Awami National Party, moved to Islamabad with her family in late 2007 because of the war between Pakistan and the Taliban over control of the Swat Valley.
The caller said Khan and her family were culpable of having forgotten their culture and traditions. Since the call, the young girl and her family have limited their movements and hardly gone out of their residence.
Hinna Khan’s father, Reyatullah Khan, said that he has been kidnapped and tortured by the Taliban in the past for his activism in women’s development. Khan and his family have been fighting a silent war against the Taliban. They have also staged several demonstrations against the Taliban atrocities and called for peace in their Swat Valley.
"The Taliban have kidnapped me and tortured me in the past for promoting women's development, but now they are threatening the entire family,” said Khan’s father, according to the Guardian.
Reports suggest a red mark has repeatedly appeared on Khan’s residence gate in Islamabad, clearly signifying that the Taliban are following her and can shoot her down anytime.
"I removed it but someone just repainted it," Reyatullah Khan said. "Then after Malala was attacked we received telephone calls threatening that 'your daughter is next,' and 'we have already sent people to Islamabad to target her.'"
According to her father, the police and intelligence agencies have failed to give security to their lives despite the matter being reported to them several times. He said he was so worried that he was planning to move to Afghanistan and live there with his family members, giving the message that living in Afghanistan would relatively be safer than living in Pakistan’s capital city.
Quite obviously, the Taliban have planned to cruelly execute Maulana Fazalullah’s plan against girls’ education in Pakistan. It is clearly the responsibility of the state to protect its citizens against attackers. The shooting of Malala should act as a warning for every Pakistani, who must stand up against the atrocities being inflicted by the Taliban.