Begum Raana Liaquat Ali Khan

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Begum Ra’ana Liaquat Ali Khan was born at Almora in the United Provinces and was educated at Lucknow. She obtained a first class Masters degree with honors in economics from the University of Lucknow in 1929.

Begum Ra’ana began her practical life as a teacher in the Gokhale Memorial School after completing the Teachers Diploma Course from the Diocesan College, Calcutta. She was later appointed as Professor of Economics in the Indraprstha Girls College, Delhi.

In April 1933, she was married to Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan.

After the reorganization of Muslim League, Begum Ra’ana devoted herself to the task of creating political consciousness amongst the Muslim women. Her struggle for emancipation continued till independence of Muslims of India in 1947.

The wife of the first Prime Minister of Pakistan, Begum Ra’ana took the lead in starting the women’s voluntary service in 1948. Women were encouraged to take up responsibilities in administering first aid, organizing food distribution, dealing with health problems, epidemics and clothing, and above all, in providing moral and emotional support. Ra’ana Liaquat Ali also took the initiative of introducing defense training for women. This step was not well received. On her own initiative, she formed the Pakistan Women’s National Guard (P. W. N. G.) and the Pakistan Women Naval Reserve (P. W. N. R.) in 1949. Begum Ra’ana was the Chief Controller of both, with the rank of a Brigadier. Viewed in the perspective of the partition massacres, where helpless women had been brutally treated, the idea was not entirely

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