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Friday, January 27, 2023
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Breaking biases: Girl drives late father’s rickshaw

Amidst rising inflation and unemployment, a 17-year-old girl has broken all the taboos by joining a male-dominated profession of driving a rickshaw to support her family after her father’s demise.

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Alisha Abdul Jameel, a resident of Karachi, is the youngest among her sisters who aspire to support her family in these tough times as lately, her father passed away which has left them financially unstable. While expressing herself she mentioned.

“When my father was ill, he taught me how to drive his rickshaw, He wanted me to fulfill his dream of becoming a breadwinner in the family like a son would… he wanted me to play this role to improve the financial situation of my family”.

Furthermore, Alisha says a huge chunk of her income goes into buying petrol for her vehicle due to the massive hike in fuel prices across the country.

Likewise, she also mentions that her father was very dear to her and she has a couplet written on her rickshaw in the memory of her late father.

Read more: Auto-Rickshaw Singer Qasim Ali Makes An Appearance In TV Show

The verse reads;

“When the burden of responsibilities becomes unbearable to shoulder, I miss my Baba dearly.”

Moreover, she started driving her father’s auto rickshaw a year ago at the cost of her studies as she could only study till grade 8th. She currently lives in a two-room rented house with her mother and an unmarried sister as the other four sisters are married.

Seeing the tough financial situation ahead, the young hardworking woman took it upon herself to become the breadwinner in the family instead of seeking financial assistance from relatives. Despite, all the hard work she had to face criticism from relatives who tried to create hurdles in her journey of empowerment and hard work.

Additionally, she talks about her supportive mother;

“I have the backing of my mother so I didn’t give up and I don’t care about anyone else.”

In addition to this, Alisha like other rickshaw drivers also faces difficulties while looking for customers. In order to be less vulnerable, she prefers to offer rides mostly to families and women for her protection and safety.

“For my own protection, I try to offer rides to mostly families or women,” she added.

Lastly, she also mentioned that in case of any inconvenience she herself pushed the rickshaw to reach the mechanic to get it fixed.

Read more: Indian Muslim turns his rickshaw into free ‘ambulance’ for COVID patients

Conclusively, Alisha has set a true example of women empowerment in our society by working in a male-dominated profession. She has paved the way for many women by breaking all the biases in order to promote gender mainstreaming and equality in every domain.