Eighteen-year-old Iqra Shamshad, first-year premedical student and resident of North Karachi’s Sector 7-D, is not dependent on her brother and father for her daily commute. She zips through the congested streets of Karachi on her motorbike every day to get to her college and coaching centre.
Iqra’s father is a banker and very much proud of his daughter driving a motorbike. Not only is she an inspiration for her teachers and class fellows but she has also taught many of her friends to drive a motorbike.
Initially, however, residents of her locality tried to discourage her from driving a two-wheeler, but as time passed, she became an inspiration for everyone.
“When I decided to drive a motorbike, my parents appreciated me,” she said confidently. “They gave me the confidence and taught me how to shun negative looks directed towards me.”
She trounces all the hooting, catcalls and unwanted gazes with confidence. “If we get overwhelmed by such gestures, we will lose,” she said with a grin.