She is no ordinary woman — the praise from a senior bureaucrat aptly describes 24-year-old Parveen Azad, wife of murdered deputy superintendent of police Zia-ul-Haq.
Despite her tender years and the tragedy three days ago, Azad was composed, dry eyed and used every bit of ingenuity to pursue justice.
Her accusing finger at Kunda legislator Raghuraj Pratap Singh set off a political storm that saw the minister out of office.
It also pushed chief minister Akhilesh Yadav to airdash to Deoria’s Juafar village to meet Azad and agree to recommend a CBI probe into the murder.
In front of the CM, she stood up for her eight-point charter of demands and even insisted that he sign it. And she enlisted the support of media to keep up the pressure on the government.
A couple of hours after her husband was buried on Monday, Azad was seen on television debating the deteriorating law and order in UP. Later, she was on television again, demanding the arrest of Singh.
Azad threatened self-immolation and hunger strike, and she argued her case with authority and emotion.
While pushing for her demands, Azad told the CM, “The police team with my husband deserted him in his hour of need. Imagine how it would be if your security deserts you.”
Azad’s fight appears all the more impressive considering her background. From a village in Bihar adjacent to Deoria, she has gone on to study medicine in Lucknow. She had married in January last year.
For now, she has won the first round. But the odds are stacked against her and the battle has only just begun.