A smile carries a lot of positivism in itself. When we are upset or had a bad day, a little smile then could turn everything upside down. The best is when it is a giggle of a child, truly mesmerising. A beautiful quote says, “Let your smile change the world. But don’t let the world change your smile.” Smile has the power to change, even though it is a little thing, but it has the power to change the world. Here, I would like to give the example of a little girl Malala from Pakistan. She, with her shining smile has brought change to a place like Pakistan and Taliban where education of girls is not permissible. A smile passed by you, to someone who is having a tough time, could give him the joy of a little smile. If you don’t trust me, read this short story of Yusuf Ali.
Yusuf Ali was a soldier from Pakistan, who was sent to India on a mission. His mission was to bring destruction and terror to the neighbouring enemy country. Yusuf was trained by a militant, who was trained to kill people. Militants were engulfed with the impression that life starts after death. They were trained to believe that killing was not a crime, rather they were helping the victims to get rid of their sins, and that life actually starts only after death. Yusuf also strongly believed this; and his mission was to free the poor victims from their sins. For them, it’s a mission of taking people to the path of freedom and serenity. But, the fact is, it’s insane, criminal and inhumane.
Yusuf and his fellow mates were trained in such a way that they had no feelings for their family and friends. All emotions and feelings were dead, but Yusuf could not forget his three-year old daughter Yasmin. Even though his training killed all the emotions, his unconscious mind still had the image of Yasmin and her beautiful smile. She was three when he left her and now she would be six. Every year on her birthday, he used to miss her. For him, she was still a 3-year-old toddler. The memories of her beautiful smile were like a stream of fresh water flowing from the mountains and washing away all the pain of distress and loneliness from Yusuf's mind. It provided him with innate joy and satisfaction.
Meanwhile, his training for the mission was over, and he had to select a date for destruction in a town of India. The destination he selected was Lucknow, and the date was the one which was always in his mind, Yasmin's birthday. It was 12th December, and he wanted to conclude his greatest mission on that date. The preparations for the mission had started three months before the date was decided.
Everything was set - suicide bombers, bombs, guns, master plan; Everything. The plan was to plant 7 bombs in the city, and all of them would blast at the same time with the help of a common trigger. The trigger was with Yusuf. He was responsible for the success of this mission.
The locations for planting powerful bombs was mapped on 6th December. Everything was planned well for the big day of destruction. The day when his daughter, his life was born, he planned to take lives of thousands of other daughters. The D-day was arriving and the team was all set in different parts of the city. They had planted the bombs at the target locations as planned.
It was 12th December, morning 6:00 am. Yusuf was checking the map and the plan. He spoke to his chief and assured him that everything was as per the plan. But he was not happy. It was the day when he used to miss his daughter the most. He wanted to speak to her, as he was sure that he wouldn’t be alive after the mission and it may be his last chance. He called his wife.
Yusuf: Hello Amina,
Amina: (his wife), Salaam, “khairiyat hai” (Are you fine?) .
Yusuf: Khairiyat. Yasmin khairiyat. (I am fine. How is Yasmin). How old is she now?
Amina: She will be seven today. She always asks about you. Speak to her, she will be very happy.
Yusuf: Yeah, I do want to speak to her for the last time.
Amina: (shocked), What do you mean by last time. What happened?
Yusuf: Nothing, mission.
Amina started crying and gave the receiver to Yasmin.
Yasmin: Salaam Abbu, How are you? We miss you a lot. Please come back soon. I want to see you on my next birthday.
(She started speaking all at once, without any breaks, and Yusuf for few minutes forgot everything. It was just him and his daughter)
Yusuf: Promise, I will.
Then he realised that he promised something to the little girl, which is impossible, but he could not control his emotions while hearing her voice. Suddenly he heard a loud voice:
“Sardar,are we on the plan? When should we move towards the target.”
Yusuf: Yes! We are in the plan. Going to start soon.
They got ready to move towards the target. It was 9:00 am, most of the rush was of people going for work. The locations chosen were all high traffic areas like bus stands, railway stations, and supermarkets. The blast time planned by the group was 7:00 pm when there will be a huge rush of people, and it will be dark. They sat in a restaurant, near one of the targets and were waiting for the clock to strike at 6:00 pm, so that they could start their work.
It was 2:00 pm, Yusuf asked his teammates to have the food of their choice today, because there was no surety that they would see tomorrow’s Sun. The team mates replied - "No problem Sardar, this is the fight for freedom. We are going to relieve these poor people from their sins, and they will meet the supreme God, and we will be lucky to taste death in this mission.
Everything was set for the huge destruction. Hiding from the cops, targeting innocent public, Yusuf was recklessly moving towards destruction. There was no one to stop him, no one to guide him that what he was doing was not the path of devotion but destruction.
It was 6:00 pm, all the 7 targets were set and suicide bombers had planted the powerful bombs at the busy targets. Yusuf was ready to push the trigger, but one last time he wanted to see his target place which was a shopping mall, and the bomb was placed in a kids play area. Yusuf went to re-check the place. He saw children were playing and were very happy. He gave a shrewd smile, but when he saw a small girl of around 3 to 4 years, his face turned down. He forgot everything for few minutes and was staring at the little girl, he was lost in her innocent smile. She was very much like Yasmin (his daughter). She was staring at him continuously and was smiling. He called her and asked her name. She said, I am Tabbasum and today is my birthday, I am very happy today. He just left from that place with tears in his eyes, it was the day when he decided to accomplish his mission, but the beautiful smile of the little girl made him remember Yasmin and they both even share their birthdays. If he would push the trigger, he was sure she will be dead.
He tried to forget everything and came out of that place. It was 6:30pm, the time was close, to push the trigger. One push and all the 7 bombs would be activated. He received a call from his boss:
Sardar: Yusuf, everything in place.
Yusuf was unable to forget the smile of Yasmin and the little girl he met near the target. He was very restless. Then he got a call from his wife.
Amina: Hello, I called at this time because Yasu is not listening to me at all. She is stubborn to speak to you.
Yusuf: Yeah, even I wanted to talk to her
Yasmin: Hello Abba (Daddy), I am missing you a lot, please come soon.
Yusuf: Sure Yasu, I will.
Yasmin: I am very happy and laughed loudly.
Yusuf felt very relaxed, and he made the decision. He directly went to the nearest telephone booth and informed police about the bombs and just moved ahead.
A little smile had the power to stop the evil destruction. The smile gave him inner satisfaction and pleasure, which made him select between right and wrong. It was the joy of little smile which brought about a big change.