Winner of International Women’s Media Foundation Courage in Journalism Award
Hijri 1363-1417 (AH); Common Era 1944-1996 (CE)
Razia Bhatti was a Pakistan journalist whose actions and writing still resonate in the nation today. Despite of the oppressive political climate in Pakistan, Bhatti tackled issues from women’s rights to political corruption and spoke up against the injustices perpetuated by the elite. She had a hand in two of Pakistan’s leading Anglophone publications—the Herald where she was editor for 12 years and Newsline where she occupied the position for another eight years. Under Bhatti, Newsline became a well known and well respected newspaper that covered an expansive range of stories including drug trade, corruption by politicians and financial institutions, religious persecution, and abuse of women’s rights. Through her integrity and dedication, Bhatti contributed much to the Pakistani society. Providing a model of a capable and respected woman in the field of journalism who was as hardy (or hardier than) her male counterparts, she furthered the cause of women's rights. She also reinforced the importance of free press and journalistic integrity in a country where honesty and free speech are often overrun by corruption and fundamentalist ideals. The example of her writing, serve as inspiration for Paksitanis to speak up against repression and question the leaders whose actions do not follow their rhetoric and who use public service position for personal gain. In 1994, Bhatti won an International Women’s Media Foundation Courage in Journalism Award.