Still, football is not a very common sport in Pakistan. There is no proper system for ground facilities. Cricket is mostly liked by everyone and it is believed that cricket has overshadowed other sports that are why most of the players give up on football. It believes that if the girls are provided better opportunities, nothing can stop them from achieving their goals.
Gilgit Baltistan Girls Football League
Sumaira Inayat is the co-founder of the Gilgit Baltistan Girls Football League; she belongs to the mountains of Northern Pakistan Shimshal. She started playing football when she was only 16 years old. She used to play football with her sister Karishma Inayat & they were the first girls to play football from their community. She got a sports scholarship for her undergraduate degree from the Punjab University. After getting experience in sports, they dreamed to start the Girls Football League to change the situation of female footballers in Pakistan.
The first league for the girls in the Pakistan. In 2018, both sisters empower the girls to achieve their dreams. The idea behind this initiative was to provide girls with a platform where they could pay with no financial problems. But the interpretation was not so easy.
Passu Valley Ground
The first league was held in the beautiful Passu Valley. The reason for choosing Passu Valley was that it lies in the upper of the Hunza & on the Karakoram Highway, that it will be easy for everyone to get there. It’s Pakistan’s 1st women-led girl’s tournament that happens every year in the 3rd quarter of the year. There were 8 teams in the tournament comprising 120 players. This tournament is always successful for the girls where their mother, father & brother stand on their sides to support them & to interpret their dreams. It is not only to play in Passu ground, instead it is a glimpse of the bright future of Pakistan. To interpret this dream, their community stands to support them.
Sumaira Inayat’s Perception
In an interview, Sumaira Inayat said “There are many games, sports & events are arranged for males but not for females. The purpose of this initiative was that the girls can come forward in the sports field by exploring their talents. It will be the means for females to tune mentally and physically fit. The 2nd purpose is to get scholarships for those girls who are not financially strong. By providing this platform, they can achieve what they want to be. One player appealed to the Government that they should also cooperate with them by providing a good ground.”
Victory & defeat place aside, the initiative taken by these sisters never be forgotten, all victories credit goes to them, that they established In the form of GBGFL. Whenever wherever you found the footballer on a National or International level these two ladies will be commemorated. When the daughters of Gilgit Baltistan enlighten their Pakistan’s name in the world, these two sisters will be commemorated.
“Girls can do anything, you just need to step out from your comfort zone & nothing in this world can stop you from chasing your dreams.”Karishma Inayat–Shimshal’s footballer