My dream is to see India,Pak become true friends: Malala

Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai

Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai


‘The old philosophy of borders, divisions and divide and conquer, they just don't work anymore’

New Delhi: The old philosophy of having borders and divisions doesn't work anymore and the people in India and Pakistan want to live in peace, Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai said on Sunday, stressing that it is her dream to see the two countries become "good friends".

She also said that minorities need protection in every country, be it Pakistan or India, adding that the issue is not related to religion but to the "exploitation of power" and must be taken seriously.

Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist for girls education who miraculously survived a bullet to the head from the militant Taliban in October 2012, said the news of internet shutdown and arrests of activists "protesting peacefully" in India is "worrying" and expressed the hope that the government will make sure that people are heard.

"You can continue to watch Pakistani dramas, we can continue to watch Bollywood movies and enjoy cricket matches," the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner said. She was speaking on her book "I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and was Shot by the Taliban" on the concluding day of the Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) which is being held in the virtual mode.

"You are Indian and I am Pakistani and we are completely fine, then why is this hatred created between us? This old philosophy of borders, divisions and divide and conquer... they just don't work anymore, as humans we all want to live in peace," she said.

The actual enemy of India and Pakistan is "poverty, discrimination and inequality" and both countries should unite and fight them, not each other, she added. Apart from "India-Pakistan friendship", Yousufzai said she also dreams of the day when every girl would get to go to school and have access to quality education.

The 23-year-old activist also raised her voice for minorities across the world and said they are at "risk" and need to be protected globally by governments and human rights organisations. "Minorities are at risk.

Minorities' rights are not given to them. Be it Hindus and Christians in Pakistan, Muslims, Dalits and other minorities in India ... Palestinians, Rohingya refugees. It is not religion, it is the exploitation of power, it is just elites vs the poor and minorities.

"Minorities need protection globally from every country. They need a voice, need protection, and it is a reminder to governments, to human rights organisations to take this very seriously," she noted.

During the discussion, she also applauded Indian girls and young women fighting for human rights, "speaking out" for farmers in India, climate change and protection of the minority rights, and called their work "empowering and inspiring".

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