They want to keep us illiterate

More from the God hates women brigade.

Sajila Gujjar, 18, was a first year university student studying computer science in the Pakistani city of Quetta.

Family and friends described her as talented, intelligent and determined to make a difference.

She was especially popular among younger children in the Faqirabad neighbourhood of the city where she lived – providing them with free after-school tuition classes.

Last Saturday, Sajila left her home in the morning for university.

“It was the last day of her exams and she was looking forward to her summer holidays,” her mother recalls.

It was the last time her mother saw her.

In the afternoon, Sajila’s father Shahjahan Gujjar, received a phone call. A female suicide bomber had been used to target the students on a university bus and 14 young women were dead including his daughter.

The injured were taken to a nearby hospital, and relatives rushed there, so then the hospital was attacked by men with guns. Nurses were killed.

“This was an attack on women’s education because they want to keep us illiterate,” says Sana Bashir, a teenage biotechnology student who narrowly escaped the bombing.

She’s brave though. Appallingly brave.

Established in 2004, Sardar Bahadur Khan Women’s University is the only all-female university in the province of Balochistan.

For some tribal and conservative families in smaller towns, it was seen as the only place to send their daughters for higher education.

The bloodshed on the university campus may well change that now.

Sana feels the attack is a setback for women’s education. But she says it is not going to stop her from going back to her studies.

“We cannot let them achieve their targets [of preventing female education]. No matter what happens, I am determined to continue with my education. We cannot give up our goals we have worked so hard for.”

She shouldn’t have to be brave. It shouldn’t take appalling courage to go to university.



  1. deepak shetty says

    It ‘s sad that you will never have shortage of material for your book sequel.

  2. says

    It’s truly evil people who would want to stunt a girl’s mind. I applaud girls and women who are striving for an education in spite of anti-woman violence like this.

  3. brucegee1962 says

    I almost stopped reading this with the third word of the article: “was,” That word really tells you all you need to know. We start to become numb to stories like this, even while knowning that every single one deserves just as much outrage as the first one.

  4. says

    Does God hate Women?

    Yes, he does hate women. Otherwise he would have been there to protect the young university students, who had only ever wanted to be successful in life. Not wanting ‘younger children’ to remain ‘illiterate’ was to the foremost on Sajila Gujjar’s mind. She quite reminds me of Malala in that respect.

    Nevertheless, what else would one expect from a Sunni terrorist group, such as Lashkar-i-Jhangvi who has claimed responsibility for the bomb attack. From various sources that I’ve read, it is apparent that the Sunni militant organisation has been outlawed by the American Government, who classified it as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation under U.S. law in January 2003. As a result, its finances are blocked worldwide by the U.S government. The Government of Pakistan also designated the LJ a terrorist organisation in August 2001. The Sunni militant group is seemingly in cahoots with the Taliban, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), Sipah-e-Sahaba (SSP), Harkat-ul-Mujahideen (HuM), Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), al-Qaeda, and Jundallah. It lays claim to a plethora of similar bomb attacks in the recent past. The Pakistan Interior Minister, speaking of LeJ members, stated: “They have been sleeping and eating together, receiving training together, and fighting against the Northern Alliance together in Afghanistan.”

    Keeping the women ‘illiterate’ serves a huge purpose, as it allows the men to walk over them and do what they want. Sajila Gujjar and her university counterparts paid a big price with their lives, all because they wanted a university education. By blocking the oxygen to the sources that these outlawed terrorists felt threatened by – the latter indeed must have felt they had achieved a part of their Godly aim to serve him relentlessly.

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