Muniba Mazari, a Pakistani artist and activist has literally lived life in two extreme halves. In the first part, she married at the age of 18 for her “father’s happiness” and sustained an unhappy marriage for two years. Later, she met with a terrible car accident that crushed her backbone and she sustained multiple fractures to her arm, shoulder, ribs and collarbone.
In her new innings, thanks to her courage and zest to live on her own terms and fight all her fears, Mazari became the National Global Goodwill Ambassador for UN Women Pakistan. She also featured in BBC 100 Women for 2015, and was among the Forbes’ 30 under 30 for 2016.
Doctors told her that she would be unable to walk, paint, or give birth; this left her devastated and questioning her existence in the world. “That day I decided that I’m going to live life for myself. I am not going to be that perfect person for someone. I am just going to take this moment and I will make it perfect for myself, that I’m going to fight my fears. You know, when you end up being on the wheelchair, what’s the most painful thing? People think that they will not be accepted by the people because we in the world perfect people are imperfects. So I decided to appear more in public,” she said.
Popularly known as the Iron Lady of Pakistan, she explains how she chose to fight her fears one at a time and soon reinvented herself. She started painting, adopted a child and even started making public appearances to break free from the social stigma attached to a person on a wheelchair.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines