In Pakistan and beyond, tasks such as firefighting and disposing bombs are widely considered a man's job.

In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), however, a young woman is defying stereotypes by training to become the country's first ever female member of the Bomb Disposal Unit (BDU).

Rafia Qaseem Baig has volunteered for the daring feat because she had never seen a Pakistani or Asian woman member of the BDU.

Rafia wants to send a message about the bravery of KP's men and women.

"If KP's women are so daring, [imagine] what level [of courage] male soldiers will possess," she says.

She recalls that on the day she first joined the police, a blast had occurred near a sessions court. The explosion seven years ago was what drove her join the force and she hasn't looked back since.

Rafia's message to women across the country?

"A woman can turn any hardship into ease if she is willing."

She wishes to present a positive image of her country and the police force "practically".

For Rafia, it would be a matter of pride for her family if she were to sacrifice her life for the country while tackling explosives to save people's lives.

"My country is my home... the Pakistani nation is my family."

Opinion

Editorial

Elections in India
Updated 21 Apr, 2024

Elections in India

Independent accounts and spot reports are at variance with Modi-friendly TV anchors and they do not see an easy victory for the Indian premier.
IHC letter
21 Apr, 2024

IHC letter

THIS is a historic opportunity for the judiciary to define its institutional boundaries. It must not be squandered....
Olympic preparations
21 Apr, 2024

Olympic preparations

THIS past week marked the beginning of the 100-day countdown to the Paris Olympics, with the symbolic torch-lighting...
Isfahan strikes
Updated 20 Apr, 2024

Isfahan strikes

True de-escalation means Israel must start behaving like a normal state, not a rogue nation that threatens the entire region.
President’s speech
20 Apr, 2024

President’s speech

PRESIDENT Asif Ali Zardari seems to have managed to hit all the right notes in his address to the joint sitting of...
Karachi terror
20 Apr, 2024

Karachi terror

IS urban terrorism returning to Karachi? Yesterday’s deplorable suicide bombing attack on a van carrying five...