It has been 3 years since the citizens of Islamabad were jolted with the news of a twin attack in the city’s district courts that claimed 12 innocent lives.
For most of us this was yet another tragedy in the long list of terrorist attacks that have hit Pakistan in the last 10 years. However, for those who were directly in the line of fire, the reality was much darker than any news report or video footage can possibly communicate.
We recently had the honor of meeting with Advocate Rai Azhar Hussain. He was not merely present as the mayhem unfolded on that morning in March 2014, but was also responsible for saving 13 precious lives while receiving 7 bullets in the process.
Rai Azhar Hussain, after bleeding for about 45 minutes was brought to the hospital assumed dead. However, the murmuring of his heart was detected on the autopsy table and he was rushed to the operation theater for a complicated surgery that lasted 22 hours.
Even after the surgery was completed, there was little hope for his survival. After keeping him on the ventilator for over a month, the doctors urged his family to pull the plug on him. However, the moment the plug was pulled, his lungs – against all odds – came to life, and the man who had been presumed clinically dead came back to life!
For his valor in the face of terror, Rai Azhar Hussain was awarded Tamgha-e-Shujaat (i.e. Medal of Bravery) by President Mamnoon Hussain on 23rd March 2016.
In his own words, Rai Azhar Hussain narrates the dreadful events of 3rd March 2014, his struggle for life, his resilience in the face of staggering pain and his pledge to work for those who continue to be affected by acts of terrorism.
Join us in saluting this brave son of the soil!