Pakistan has rapidly and drastically evolved in the past couple of years, especially when it comes to women empowerment. Even though we have a long way to go, it is moments like the current one that show us how far we actually have come.
Yesterday, Human Rights Minister Shireen Mizari appreciated a female Major General, sparking curiosity in a lot of people who were previously unaware of her
Major General Nigar Johar Khan, a 2-star General in the Pakistan Army, is now the third woman in history to have reached her rank. While the praise for her is coming recently, some sources have stated that she was actually promoted to her current rank back in 2017.
Now an icon that a lot of women look up to, she has shown with her resilience and hard-work that women are just as capable as men, if not more, and inspires many to take initiative for their dreams.
— Shireen Mazari (@ShireenMazari1) June 18, 2019
Today, Hamza Ali Abbasi also joined her in appreciation
Yet another proud moment for my beloved PAKISTAN…. Say hello to the 3rd woman to reach the rank of Major General in Pakistan Army… Maj. General Nigar Johar Khan! May Allah bless you. ❤️🇵🇰 pic.twitter.com/69EbDmaKG7
— Hamza Ali Abbasi (@iamhamzaabbasi) June 19, 2019
The Major General is a doctor, who, taking inspiration from her father, who too was an army officer, opted to go to medical school and serve in the Pakistan Army
Major General Nigar comes from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and has a lot of advice to offer to young women who want to follow in her footsteps. She states that life pushed her to extremes when she lost her parents as a child, and ever since, she has had to push herself. But she also does admit that it was twice as hard for her to reach her rank than it would have been for a man doing the same thing.
In an interview, Nigar acknowledged that the “glass ceiling is pretty high, but Pakistani women are getting there”.
Being a doctor, the Major General is aware of most of the health issues facing females in Pakistan, and believes that it is common for women to put themselves at bottom priority in all spheres of life. She finds that education would be the simplest solution to this deterioration in health high mortality in women.
With regard to work-life balance, Major General Nigar believes that it is important to have an understanding spouse
She admits that it was difficult for her to maintain this balance and that understanding and sorting out her life’s priorities immensely helped her in doing so. Keeping work and life overlapped to a certain, safe extent has helped her a lot and she stayed positive and committed towards her passion in order to come as far as she has.
Dr. Johar Khan is an icon for millions of Pakistani women and has encouraged a large number of people to serve in the army. Sure, there’s the fact that our country is in a state where something like this is still so out of the ordinary… but its really people like her that are helping us advance towards a nation where this becomes the norm.
Thank you for your service, Major General!
Meet Qaswa Hussain, A Young Pakistani Woman Brilliantly Shattering Stereotypes By Being A Pilot And Activist
Cover image via: hilal.gov.pk