Women scaling new heights in male-dominant fields

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By Beenish Maqbool

ISLAMABAD, Nov 22 (APP): In contrast to past history when women were reluctant to join jobs with men having dominancy now they have started proving themselves incredible in all fields in Pakistan.
Official facts and figures proved that many important public sector jobs have been occupied by women while they are also being considered professionally competent in private sector jobs.
Interestingly, many women have made incredible progress in the workforce, despite the fact that some fields are dominated by men like construction, automotive services, marketing, commercial and industrial designers.
Many of them have been hired on heavy wages keeping in view their skills and capability. Now there are no more services remaining male-dominated which were earlier so overwhelmingly male like legal, media production, and direction and even in sports.
Similarly, a large number of women have started the profession of taxi driving in male dominated profession, which is very daring and courageous.
Shamim Akhtar, country’s first commercial truck driver said that as she was the sole bread earner of her family and had to face many hardships in her way so she had to be like a man and finally she opted this profession and drove a heavy transport vehicle (HVT) to support her family.
“We make our own destinies,” she says. “If I had sat at home, I would’ve had no future. I worked hard to get this far”, she added.
“If I have to change my life, I must begin with myself. I’m not going to accept defeat, I will fight”, and there was no looking back now, she added.
She said that there was no profession in which women were lagging behind, you just need courage and confidence to remove barriers and hurdles from your way to prove yourself. “From dish washing to truck driving was a long way for her, at first it was really strange, but afterwards every one started encouraging me,” she said.
She said that first she learnt HVT driving from Islamabad Traffic Police (ITP) and then started taking heaving loads of goods and bricks to other cities of the country. “As this is male dominated profession, but many of my male colleagues boosted my morale at every step to make me fearless,” she said.
A lot of women asked me to teach them how to drive a truck, but I said, “I told them that this profession needs courage and confidence”, she further said.
She had embarked on a new journey of life and. had become an entrepreneur.
She further commented that she was an inspiration for other females in this profession, just one needs to believe in herself and one can achieve milestones.
Another professional woman Nargis Khatoon, an owner of a private firm said “If you are scared, the fear will lead you nowhere.
Today, if you are going to be scared, then tomorrow you will not be able to do anything.” She said “I believe women are capable of achieving everything.” She said that it was imperative to empower women in all sectors of life so that they could be economically independent to make their lives valuable.  “I was at a point where I could not start looking for jobs.
I felt like I needed something else,” says the 49-year-old mother of three.  Zainab Suleman, a taxi driver said that her friends  motivated her to sign up for an online cab hailing service, which was attracting thousands of drivers in Pakistan and beyond at the time. 
         She said” I joined an online cab service to take advantage of the flexible working hours. I always feared, as a woman, and wanted to be like a fellow woman but now I changed myself.”