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   xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Oct 4 12:19 AM

October 4th, 2015: Shazia Perveen

This is Shazia Perveen in all her glory, the first and only female firefighter in Pakistan, maybe the only one in Asia. How did this happen? She wanted it bad, real bad.

You know, unless you've been living in a cave, the media coverage of Pakistan and it's neighbors has painted a grim picture of female life and prospects there. Girls schools bombed, rules preventing girls from what we'd call a normal social life, and constant oppression. True or not, exaggeration or not, that's the impression in the west. So this comes as a surprise to me, making me wonder if she's a token for propaganda to the west. She's not.

Shazia, 25, who hails from Vehari District in Punjab, joined the Rescue 1122 emergency services as a firefighter in 2010. Fighting fire with frightening conflagrations in a field feared even by most men, her co-workers acknowledge her determination. Rescue 1122 claims that Perveen is the first female firefighter in Pakistan, and perhaps in all of Asia.

But it has not been an easy road to her dream. After recruitment, she had to undergo extensive training at the Punjab Emergency Service in Lahore. “Amongst the 600 people there, I was the only woman who completed the training.” Her training included learning to swim, jump, fight fire, and climbing up roofs with the help of ropes.

“At the outset, people would laugh at me when they saw me working with male workers. But afterwards, when I saved their precious properties during fires, they started admiring me,” she recounts. Having managed to wriggle into a world of men, Perveen thinks that that women can tackle any job and take up any profession of their choice.

Lauding Shazia’s passion, District Emergency Officer Doctor Farzand says Perveen is a trustworthy worker and we get to receive good feedback for her, which is because she never compromises on her work. “Ours is a men’s society. But Perveen works adamantly against such matriarchal thinking,” he says.

sexobon  Sunday Oct 4 12:56 AM

Goodness gracious GREAT BALLS OF FIRE is what she must have, the woman is hot stuff.

footfootfoot  Sunday Oct 4 09:29 AM

Patriarchal, but whatever.

hot. sexobon beat me to the punch.

xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Oct 4 10:28 AM

I noticed that too, but then thought maybe he was saying the accepted matriarchal thinking is to believe they can't exceed "in a man's world".

Diaphone Jim  Sunday Oct 4 04:29 PM

Thanks for an upbeat, and unexpected, IOTD.

xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Oct 4 09:19 PM

You're welcome Jim, sometimes they slip through.

Griff  Monday Oct 5 07:34 AM

Originally Posted by Diaphone Jim View Post
Thanks for an upbeat, and unexpected, IOTD.
Right on.

xoxoxoBruce  Monday Oct 5 01:09 PM

The problem with the upbeat, feel-good stories, is they seldom come with worthy pictures. Usually just somebody with a big grin... and not as hot as Shazia.

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