Since the inception of Pakistan, women have been a part of the military service. Whether it has been a part in the healthcare or logistics sector or more recently in combat units and as fighter pilots, women have played a role.

In 2008 the Punjab Rangers announced their intentions to recruit women.  A Rangers official, who did not want to be identified, remarked this move was made by then president, Pervez Musharraf, as part of his “enlightened moderation” agenda. However, since the first batch of female Rangers were inducted; there have been no more recruiting calls. Of the 30 or so female Rangers living on base at the Punjab Rangers headquarters, majority of them are still on the Sepoy ranking. In the last five years, only a handful have been promoted to the Sub-inspector position. The duties these women perform vary from protocol for female VIPs, duty at the Wagah and Ganda Singh Border and administrative work. “One wonders why there has been no recruitment since 2008,” remarked the same officer.

He may be right, the role of these female Rangers is seen by many as mostly symbolic, of the original 60 or so recruited a bit more than half have remained. The latest recruitment for Rangers in Pakistan was by the Sindh Rangers looking for nurses, midwives and ayahs.

Although their training is as aggressive as their male counterparts, the Punjab female Rangers don’t seem to have much more to do. All the women interviewed for this video seemed happy and well taken care of – they didn’t have any complaints.

However, is there more that these women can do, other than check post duty? Incidents in the last five years would suggest that out of the 420,000 strong paramilitary forces, there is a need to have women serving in frontline duty. They are especially needed in rescue operations such as the 2008 earthquake or the 2010 and 2011 floods or even in crisis situations like the Lal Masjid operation and other scenarios where women are involved.

Since the inception of Pakistan in 1947, women have been a part of the military service. Whether it has been a part in the healthcare or logistics sector or more recently in combat units and as fighter pilots women have played a role. A day in the life of the women Punjab Rangers.


Comments (38) Closed

Mar 25, 2013 01:42pm
Strong confident self assured women are an asset for Pakistan. But has it run out of men? Have all brave ones been killed off?
Recommend 0
Mar 25, 2013 01:47pm
Zabardast! This is the future of Pakistan. If our women move ahead, they will take the entire Country along with them inshallah!
Recommend 0
Agha Ata (USA)
Mar 25, 2013 02:05pm
In Pakistan, it is the image that is more important, the FORM, not the substance. So it is ok.
Recommend 0
Cyrus Howell
Mar 25, 2013 02:09pm
In China most peasant girls want to join the military and see something of China before marriage. This has been a good experience for these female rangers. As they say, they see life a bit differently now. Especially enjoyed the comment about how they dressed more slowly before joining the rangers. Very amusing. It is part of a solid foundation for the rest of their lives. Dealing with and understanding more about men, and overcoming shyness is a very positive outcome. Dying in battle is a very negative outcome. They should be happy living on the base. They were not recruited to be heroes. Anyway, most heroes are accidental heroes.
Recommend 0
Mar 25, 2013 02:31pm
These are Pakistani Women. Not Chinese or American. Like their male counter parts, fighting and dying for Pakistan, called Shadat, is the greatest honor and positive outcome. As is killing your enemy. Then you are called Ghazi. Hero is not in the lingo. You will not get it.
Recommend 0
Salman cheema
Mar 25, 2013 07:19pm
It is good to see women joining the ranger force. keep up the good work and progress pakistan.
Recommend 0
U.E Hayyat
Mar 25, 2013 07:47pm
We need to empower women and we need to do it fast. It is very important for the growth of a Nation to have women who are not dependent on anyone.
Recommend 0
Mar 25, 2013 09:13pm
Great article , thumbs up for these strong ladies and there families. And also thanks to those people in armed forces and in government sector to create opportunity .
Recommend 0
Kamil Gani
Mar 25, 2013 09:28pm
It is not the responsibility of women to work. Men should work and support their family.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 01:27am
What a joke, what good these women do to Pakistan by joining rangers, r they going to take part in war, no unfortunately they will only put more burden on our society by getting high salaries and useless in return. We tend to follow KAWA CHALA HANS KI CHAAL APNI BHI BHOOL GAYA. we tend to follow blindly west as they have women as marines and in military but we dont want to take other good things from them. really if someone can give me one good reason for having women in military!!!!!! Enlightenment moderation... haha.. ask the wives of rangers and other military personal who feel soo much insecure when their husbands are assigned duties with these women.
Recommend 0
Kamal Mansoor
Mar 26, 2013 04:10am
Amazing! Absolutely Amazing! Thank you for serving our Country!
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 04:23am
so cute
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 04:29am
Anti Musharaff forces ended the recruitment of women as rangers,, these Pakistani women can do a lot more if trained properly, and don`t forget they bring money home which raises the standard of living of their families.More women of Pakistan should be hired in every field.They have been a part of military service for a long time but their %age is very low.I bet with proper training and support they can clean up the mess in Karachi.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 04:49am
you are partially right, that inspector said that "I will get married and discontinue the service; it depends on who I marry IF THEY WANT TO ALLOW ME TO BE IN THE RANGERS" WTF man. Just for the heck of joining she joined and now she is worried if she will get married or not. The Pakistani and Indian societies are still suppressing women
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 04:57am
May be the work Men rangers could not do would be taken care by the female rangers.....
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 06:22am
really good article i like it... but you listen the video non of them have said that what is my future for pakistan. they just said we play lado, walk in evening hahhahh nice joke. just 1 said i wana Shahid for my country.. for God sake when your enemy attack you may they not in possition and ur enemies kidnape them so what we people feel.... they don,t need to be in force please stop this joking. women should be a doctor, nurse, teacher.. dear there are many man they want to be in force and a man can perform well then a women. so its just wasting the budget...
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 06:32am
So in what ways should these women be "useful" to you?
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 07:10am
It is a pleasure to see such incredible women in our armed forces. Encouraging and actively recruiting women in all fields of life at par with men would create a more diverse knowledge base and ultimately lead to a brighter moderate Pakistan. Inshallah...
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 07:21am
Thank goodness the majority of people would laugh at your logic...and dare I say ignorance...
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 07:52am
I don't agree with your comments, in present situation everybody has to work. That is why more and more girls are going to universities and getting jobs in every field. Please come out of this old thinking that only men has to work.
Recommend 0
Khalid Malik
Mar 26, 2013 08:08am
When women forget their primary role of being a wife and mother to train and nourish her family then Pakistan will never progress.Don't ignore your little ones and leave them to maids and nannies.Have a heart of a mother!
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 08:48am
Very good article and excellent example that Nadia is setting up for the girls of Pakistan and our region. I must congratulate you and wish that we two countries always live in peace unlike our past.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 10:34am
yeah like Rangers men are already doing in Karachi....
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 12:56pm
Oh my, you need a time machine to bring you into 2013. This conservative bigotry has no place in today's world.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 02:32pm
First take permission from Taliban .....
Recommend 0
No hope.
Mar 26, 2013 04:58pm
Because of the backward thinking of idiots like you,the women remain were they are,if given the chance,they can and are just as productive.Unfortunately for them,they are not given a chance to prove their worth.Just look at the pilots,they are just as smart as the mext guy.I say give them the chance.Its the responsibility of both the men and the women,infact,they have more patience,they can more focused,men go from 0 to 60 in 3 seconds,want proof,they raise our children,run the house,cook,clean and more yet a man goes to work,drinks tea all day and comes home to demand food,clean clothes and acts like he conquered the world lol,my wife works and is as big a part of our life as me and I'm proud of her,I help her in every way around the house when I come home.Only if we gave them the same respect we give ourselves.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 05:03pm
they should increase the female soldiers,, then inshaallah our soldiers will be happy
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 06:31pm
What kind of Islamic country is this? No Burkha? No Mehra? no regard for Hadis?
Recommend 0
El Cid
Mar 26, 2013 10:25pm
Younger women think that if they are more like men than they will become free and superior. This is based on escapist brainwashing inferiority complex fed them by the west where women are a product and a commodity, bought and sold used by men. Women have always been the superior stronger enduring sex. Nature made it so that species could survive. And they are wiser, specially when older... Except for stronger muscles men don't have much going for them. But they used them to advantage and sometimes ruthlessly to take control of the otherwise stronger, wiser, better forgiving loving superior sex to ravage the world and reduce it to the condition it is in.
Recommend 0
Mar 26, 2013 10:33pm
Women in western forces are essentially used for raping. Last year alone 90,000 were raped and according to Pentagon estimates 60% are not reported or not recorded at the platoon level by the officers who raped them in the first place.
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 01:19am
Very good indeed, woman are equal to men and should get there due place in our society, rubbish what backward and people with no actual knowledge of Islam say that they should stay in doors and just raise family, they are equal and have every right to gain any employement that does not degrade them as a human being. An educated well learned woman will raise a family that is not backward in thoughts and manners and will raise children that will be an asset to the nation not an embrassment.
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 05:09am
use you imagination, procreation
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 05:12am
what happen to the sense of humor in this country. it is not unislamic to smile once a while.
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 05:20am
Burkha is not the Basics of Islam.The Basic of Islam is foramation of charactor.Hazrat Muhammed SALLALAHO WASAALAM had demonstrated charactor.We should also develop our chractor and leave to speak JHOOT(False) only from today we will become a great nation.
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 05:20am
what she will do at Rangers.background profile of these women should also be disclosed so nation should know who courages to send daughters and sisters to such positions.
Recommend 0
An Eastern Woman
Mar 27, 2013 07:33am
I am a woman myself and come from the same society as you do. However I must disagree with you as majority of the women of our society do not want to work themselves. They just want to get married, have children, get new clothes and jewellery, talk on the phone with phuppi mami chachi and watch tv all day long. We women are very clever, we play 'woman card' whenever it is convenient for us. Why should women be 'given' a chance, they should 'take' it but only if they 'wanted' to! So I do not blame our men entirely, our women are EQUALLY to be blamed!
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 12:39pm
Our soldiers are happy. They are married. Have families. Relatives. Security. There is always a long line of people trying to get into the armed forces. Obviously there is attraction there to joint the security forces as these girls themelves imply..
Recommend 0
Mar 27, 2013 12:43pm
There is NO burqa in Islam. Only modesty in dress and gaze is ordained in the Qur'an. Reading it answers many questions and removes false exploitation and rumors about Islam that are floating around as is implied in your post.
Recommend 0