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When Taliban militants stormed a school in Pakistan's northwest last December, killing 150 people, mainly children, in the country's deadliest terror attack, comic book creators Mustafa Hasnain and Gauhar Aftab decided it was time to act.Hasnain, a British-educated computer graphics specialist, founded his own company, Creative Frontiers, in 2013, today employing 20 people, including young male and female artists, programmers and writers, in a hip Silicon Valley-style office in the city of Lahore.The result was "Paasban" – or "Guardian" – a three-part series featuring a group of close friends at college who begin to worry when one of them drops out to join a religious student group that is ostensibly working for charitable causes.A product of Aitchison College in Lahore, Pakistan's elite equivalent to Britain's Eton, Aftab came under the influence of a charismatic teacher who convinced him at the age of 13 to leave behind his school and family to fight jihad against the Indian army in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.Pulled back by a last-minute family intervention, he came to identify the methods that radicals use to attract young people to violent jihad.By creating a storyline that features a protagonist going through these experiences, said Aftab, young people who see the same thing going on in their lives or those of their friends will be better equipped to identify and avoid the same fate.
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