Every year Forbes adds 30 people to its ’30 Under 30′ list in a range of categories and we are proud to state that several Pakistanis have made it to the list many times. This year, 4 Pakistanis were named on the list. Last year, 13 Pakistanis made it to the list. In 2019, 5 Pakistanis got the honor to be on the list. We can go on & on.
We have picked 7 Pakistanis who were named by Forbes Magazine in the last 3 years. Here’s to celebrating their successes. Let’s dive right in, shall we?
1. Zain Ahmed
Zain Ahmed is the co-founder and creative director of Rastah – a streetwear brand that’s making waves in Pakistan. According to the brand’s vision, the fashion label is working toward reinterpreting South Asian heritage and artisanship and translating it into urban luxury. Besides Pakistan, Rastah has also made its way to Bollywood & Hollywood where the likes of Anil Kapoor, Karan Johar, French Montana, and Riz Ahmed have donned Rastah’s pieces as well.
Rastah empowers underprivileged Pakistan artisans, technical workers, and designers. The brand features limited edition pieces that are a perfect amalgamation of western and eastern styles. Their collections cover T-shirts, outerwear, knitwear, trousers, accessories, etc. The designs from Rastah will definitely be the most unique pieces in your closet and the fact that they have a ‘made in Pakistan’ tag is just the cherry on top!
2. Shawana Shah
Shawana Shah is a Pakistani activist who advocates for women’s, young girls, and transgender people’s rights. She co-founded Da Hawwa Lur, a political, social, and economic development platform for girls that offers a forum for capacity-building and connects members to important stakeholders and policymakers so that they may voice their requests for pro-women legislation. She is an outspoken supporter of women’s and girls’ rights. Shawana is a Master of Philosophy student who became the first Asian to bag the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award in 2016, and also received the Fakhre Pakhtunkhwa (National Heroes) Award in 2021 for her efforts on gender equality.
Forbes describes Da Hawa Lur as a platform that “advocates for policy reform, educates communities about women and transgender rights, hosts literacy workshops, offers tele-counseling services, and has distributed relief packages, including female hygiene kits, in Pakistan.”
3. Muhammad Salman
Muhammad Salman is the co-founder and chief executive of BridgeLinx, a digital freight marketplace. BridgeLinx acts as the middleman between manufacturing companies, factories, and private fleets and truckers. It essentially connects the two to ensure timely and more efficient pick-ups and delivery. In addition to this, it also looks over document validation.
4. Dur E Aziz Amna
Dur E Aziz Amna grew up in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, and now lives in Newark, USA. She is an author by profession, her work has appeared in The New York Times, Financial Times, and Al Jazeera, among others. She won the 2021 Salam Award and the 2019 Financial Times / Bodley Head Essay Prize. In 2022, She was selected as Forbes 30 Under 30. She has graduated from Yale College and the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan.
Her first-ever novel is set to release in August this year, which follows the story of a Muslim Pakistani girl navigating through life in Oregon.
5. Abdullah Siddiqui
Abdullah Siddiqui is a singer, songwriter, and music producer based in Lahore. He was named in the Forbes 30 under 30 list in 2021 under the ‘Entertainment & Sports’ category. Abdullah has been producing electronic music since the mere age of 11. His music made its way to Nescafe Basement season 5 with the song Resistance.
Many know him from this year’s Coke Studio where he aced his role as the executive producer alongside Xulfi. During the season, he also collaborated with Atif Aslam and created ‘Go’ – a widely appreciated song throughout the country.
6. Misha Japanwala
Misha Japanwala is a Pakistani designer and visual artist. She made it to Forbes 30 under 30 last year for her work that highlights honor killings and domestic violence in Pakistan. Apart from Forbes, her work has been featured in Vogue Spain. She has also collaborated with model Gigi Hadid on a sculptural mask for V Magazine. Wait, there’s more! Misha has also worked on a collection of breastplates & body casts. One of her breastplates was featured in rapper Cardi B’s music video as well.
7. Karishma Ali
Karishma Ali is the first girl from Chitral to have played football both nationally and internationally. She was added to the Forbes 30 under 30 list at the age of 21, making her the youngest on the list at that time. Karishma has also created the Chitral Women’s Sports Club in her hometown.
According to Forbes, “She has represented Pakistan at the Jubilee Games in Dubai, and her team was the first women’s team from Pakistan to participate in the AFL International Cup.”
There’s no better feeling than to witness the work of hardworking Pakistanis being recognized internationally. We are stoked to see more and more Pakistanis being added to the Forbes 30 under 30 list each year and we couldn’t be prouder!