Pak Shaheen – Karachi’s first girls’ boxing club – was found in Lyari, one of Karachi’s toughest areas, notorious for it’s gang street fights. It is also where we went to attend an hour long training session with the girls of Pak Shaheen.
Younus Qambrani, coach of app. 18 girls between eight and 17 years of age
Younus Qambrani is a former coach and founder of the Girls and Women Boxing Club in Lyari. Father to a son and two daughters, he is not a typical Pakistani father figure. For a society deeply rooted in the pariarchy, girls are pressured to focus on home-making skills – learning how to cook, clean, and how to make and look after a family. There is little encouragement from home to pursue an education, go to school or participate in sports activities, rather, it is often forbidden.
Anum Qambrani, is being supported by her father – in spite of the disaproval of her females family members
But the girls, aged 8 to 17, are more than keen on learning boxing as a form of self protection and defence. They confidently came forward on their own to speak with us and loved posing for the camera but as soon as their training began, they were serious and focused on their tasks– strenghtened in body and mind.