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Malala Yousafzai Criticized For Her College Clothes (Photos)

Malala Yousafzai Criticized For Her College Clothes (Photos) Promo Image

Women's education activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai has started school at Oxford University, but it was her outfit that caught the attention of internet users around the world and media sources in her mother country of Pakistan.

Yousafzai, who always has her head covered and typically makes public appearances in traditional Pakistani garb, reportedly walked around campus wearing skinny jeans, high-heeled ankle boots and a bomber jacket in addition to her head covering, according to an unverified photo that first surfaced in a Pakistani news outlet, reports Daily Mail.

A number of Twitter users took issue with the 20-year-old's appearance, with some calling her a "hypocrite" and questioning if she is "even a Muslim."

"Want a nobel prize and getting admission into Oxford University?" wrote another user. "Step 1: get shot… so much for women rights advocacy lol."

Pakistani media published a number of these messages. One news outlet reportedly posted the photo alongside a report that there was an earthquake in her hometown.

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"That was the reason the bullet directly targeted her head long time ago," another social media user commented on the viral photo.

One person even scrawled over the photo, covering her in a crudely-drawn burqa using a photo-editing program.

Other viewers said that the people who are angry about the activist's clothing constitute a small, ultra-conservative minority.

"What Malala wore in UK, is pretty common in Pakistan as well," said one Twitter user. "Stop creating a fuss about it. Let others live their life, at least for once."

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Another pointed out the irony of "a nation that doesn't have enough electricity, food or water resources" but still "debates … what a woman should and shouldn't wear."

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"Girl wins Nobel, no big deal," one person wrote. "Girl wears jeans, the whole country is on fire. Only in Pakastan."

BBC presenter Anita Anand, who has familial ties to Pakistan, told MailOnline that the "baying criticism" is from "the most regressive quarters" who would never approve of Yousafzai, no matter what she wears.

"I sincerely hope she never tries" to please them, Anand added. "All of my Pakistani friends agree with that sentiment. She is a heroine and a role model. Her insistence on an education has taken her to one of the finest learning establishments in the world. She refused to be deterred even though extremists tried to shoot her into line."

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Yousafzai, who is the world's youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, has lived with her family in Birmingham, England, since 2013, notes The New York Times. She arrived in the country for life-saving medical treatment in 2012, after a Taliban gunman shot her in the head and neck after she advocated for girls' education and wrote articles for the BBC about her life in a Taliban-controlled area of Pakistan.

Sources: Daily Mail, The New York Times / Featured Image: Ricci Coughlan/DFID - UK Department for International Development via Flickr / Embedded Images: Twitter via Daily Mail

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