Nawaz moves with the ease of a seasoned pro around the dealership’s garage, removing tyres from raised vehicles, inspecting engines and handling a variety of tools — a sight that initially jolted some customers.
Islamabad: Uzma Nawaz is one of the first female car mechanics in conservative Pakistan. She is looked upon by people by shock and surprise. And then a bit of respect. The 24-year-old earned a mechanical engineering degree and got a job with an auto repairs garage in the eastern city of Multan.
Speaking about people’s reaction, Nawaz says, “When they see me doing this type of work they are really surprised.” Uzma hails from a small, impoverished town of Dunyapur in eastern Pakistan’s Punjab province. While pursuing her degree Nawaz relied on scholarships and often skipped meals.
Following her graduation, she got a job at a Toyota dealership in Multan. After a year into the job, and promoted to general repairs.
As reported by AFP, Nawaz moves with the ease of a seasoned pro around the dealership’s garage, removing tyres from raised vehicles, inspecting engines and handling a variety of tools — a sight that initially jolted some customers. Her coworker M. Attaullah says “Whatever task we give her she does it like a man with hard work and dedication. A customer says he was shocked to see a young girl lifting heavy spare tyres and then putting them back on vehicles after repairs. Her colleagues are impressed by Nawaz’s drive and expertise, who say she can more than hold her own.
Uzma spent years overcoming entrenched gender stereotypes and financial hurdles to make it in a male-dominated work.