Nasar Zada

In a significant milestone for Gilgit’s journalistic community, Kiran Qasim has made history by becoming the first female journalist to participate in the Gilgit Union of Journalists elections. This marks the first time the union elections have taken place in seven years, and Kiran Qasim’s candidacy is seen as a crucial step in strengthening the union to protect the rights of journalists.

In an exclusive conversation with TNN, Kiran Qasim, hailing from Gilgit city, discussed her journey into journalism, which commenced in late 2010. She reflected on the initial challenges she faced, including societal pressure, with many questioning the role of a female journalist in a field traditionally dominated by men. Despite these obstacles, Kiran’s passion for journalism persisted.

Kiran Qasim emphasized that journalism is her chosen profession, despite suggestions from relatives to pursue a different career. Over the years, she has been instrumental in paving the way for other female journalists, with five more women now actively working for various organizations in Gilgit. Her dedication to highlighting women’s issues and achievements in the media has earned her respect and recognition in the region.

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While Kiran initially had no intentions of participating in the Union of Journalists elections, she was encouraged and convinced by young journalists and her male counterparts to run as a presidential candidate. The elections, scheduled for October 5, will witness two competing panels vying for victory. Kiran Qasim’s panel has put forth her candidacy for the presidency, with another young female journalist serving as a vice-presidential candidate.

Kiran Qasim expressed her commitment to working for the welfare of journalists if elected as the union’s president. She acknowledged the challenges faced by journalists in Gilgit and pledged to address these issues. Additionally, she aims to promote greater female participation in the field of journalism. Kiran lauded the support she has received from both the national and local media, which has further fueled her passion for journalism and reinforced her dedication to the profession.