Iqbal Masih was only 4 years old when his father, out of poverty, sold him as a slave. Yet the boy was determined to do something for himself and for many like him and made a mark in this world through his efforts. He did not die as an ordinary slave yet died as a hero.
Born to a poor family in Pakistan, Masih paid a huge price for his mother’s treatment. His mother suffered from illness and Masih was sold only for $12 so that the family could afford the treatment of his seriously ill mother.
The mother was to undergo a surgery and there was no way they could afford it. The only viable asset that the family had was Masih and thereby he was sold as a slave. The factory owner took the slave boy to his factory where he was forced to work more than his capability and age.
The slave was to work tirelessly under constant torture. He worked 12 hours a day and 7 days a week without a single day off. He was chained to a loom so that he might not run away from work and was physically abused. He was given no or little food.
The loan of his father would grow bigger and bigger day by day because of interest. After 6 years of tireless and fruitless efforts, Masih finally managed to run away from the state of captivity.
After running away from the horrific nightmare, Masih was able to land into the safe hands of Bonded Labour Liberation Fund: a school for the former slaves. There Masih showed his true potentials and hard work. He was able to cover the syllabus of 4 years within 2 years only.
Soon he made sure that he would help others like him and by the age of 12 years, he was able to become a leader of the anti-Slave movement. His movement got attention and he was traveling to different countries raising voices for slaves.
His mission was a successful one as more than 3000 slaves in Pakistan were able to gain freedom. These slave children were able to get rid of the nightmare, tortures and were able to break their chains.
His dream was to become a lawyer and advocate rights for such children. Yet a tragic incident met and his dream was put to rest. He returned from a trip from the US and was traveling on a dusty road of Pakistan when he was shot dead. The hero died at the age of 12 only.
Someone shot him dead: While some believe that a farmer shot him, many know that it was a murder. The people involved in this business knew that they would suffer badly with the growing influence of Masih’s movement.
His funeral was attended by various people from across the country. The boy died young, yet what he did was big. He died for children, for slaves whose voices are unheard. Rest in peace young hero!