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Bushra Zaidi – a case that changed Karachi by accident

Why is April 15 important for Karachi?

SAMAA | and - Posted: Apr 15, 2021 | Last Updated: 9 months ago
Posted: Apr 15, 2021 | Last Updated: 9 months ago

The day April 15 is the death anniversary of Bushra Zaidi, a young woman whose fate changed that of Karachi. It has been 36 years since she was killed in 1985.

That day started out just like any other for her and her sister Najma. The sisters got ready and left for college. They were students of Sir Syed Girls College.

They got off their bus and were crossing Nazimabad’s Nawab Siddiq Ali Khan Road when there was an “accident”. The exact nature of what happened is difficult to tell given how old this history is. But we do know that Najma’s leg was fractured and she survived. Bushra was crushed and died on the spot.

Bushra’s death changed Karachi. It triggered protests across the city led by students who were tired of bus drivers. SAMAA Digital went digging into this history. We spoke to Saleem Vahidy, who was a senior police officer at the time. Senior journalist Mazhar Abbas recalls the day as well. And Malik Zaheer ul Islam headed the city government’s Traffic Engineering Bureau at the time. They look back at the case and what Karachi used to be like. We also spoke to a member of the college staff who was there.

How much has Karachi’s traffic changed? How much safer is it for college students? These were the points we wanted to highlight.

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  1. Sana Ahmed.  April 16, 2019 9:10 am/ Reply

    Really I read this news today and I thought if Mishra was alive today she might be doing something good about our country,but, unfortunately she has gone.Many cases like these happened on the roads,and,it seems that we are not able to do anything.Laws are here,but where is the implementation???
    When will the government took some positive steps in this regard?

    • Dkjkjjjj  April 20, 2020 2:04 am/ Reply

      Its bushra not mishra

  2. Abdul  April 16, 2019 5:08 pm/ Reply

    Burning and looting of Pathan properties later on.
    Pathans reacted with a great influx into Karachi, which became the biggest Pakhtun city.
    MQM […] began to crush Sindhis, Pathans, others
    Again Sindhi migration started
    Now Mohajir population 35% in Karachi although significant but not the majority.

    • Salman  April 21, 2020 3:46 pm/ Reply

      Ohh really ??

      What you guys have except drugs , weapons ?

      Can you let me know the single legal colony / market in which pakhton lived at that time ?? even now as well

      Majority of people who lived in unleagal colonies are pathan’s ….. QABZA group Banaras , Manghorphir Moutains , Site area , grab and created illegal market on Moulana Abdul Hamid Badayuni College land ,

      Pathan’s looted Karachi…

      This is harsh reality , and your comments shows “Rancorousness”.

      I am proud Muhajir … and we own this city.

      • Khan  April 15, 2021 1:34 pm/ Reply

        Well no one “owns” a particular city in a country which is meant for all. The sad reality for someone like you is that the driver was not Pathan but Kashmiri.

      • Abdullah  April 16, 2021 3:28 pm/ Reply

        Brother we r all muslims no one is superior… If u claim that u own the city ur wrong absolutely

  3. Maha  April 16, 2019 5:13 pm/ Reply

    Mini bus races? Daewoo races or at least driving in too fast speed still happens with students inside the bus. The students keep yelling to drive slow n safe but it’s the same story every other day.

  4. Abdullah  April 16, 2019 6:52 pm/ Reply

    Allah inheh jannat men jaga day magar is say karachi ki kiya bat badli hai

  5. Shabeeh sajid  April 16, 2019 10:13 pm/ Reply

    Yes i remember that horrible day, our first day at ku n then the second day came after three months, poor girl what not plans she must have had which ruined by the cruel driver, her parents if they are still alive, couldn’t have forgotten her till now, every other fatal
    accident would have recalled their memories. But the rash drivers are still on roads, claiming lives of the innocents daily, our governments still busy in money making instead of improving country’s situation. Please Allah (swt ) make their hearts softer for the people of Pakistan…….aameen

  6. Anonymous  April 17, 2019 1:40 am/ Reply

    Hi my name is zubaida naghnma at that time I was a part of this protest I was studying BA in sir syed girls college ,I was social Secretary,
    And I don’t think that any thing has changed still there is no one who follows traffic rules,
    Sad to say that our peaceful protest became something else, iam never going to forget that day.
    RIP :Bushra zaidi

  7. ZAIB  April 17, 2019 3:42 pm/ Reply

    RIP Bushra

  8. Shahid  April 17, 2019 10:22 pm/ Reply

    Think positive. Still have baise mind set. Be Muslim, Pakistani and good human instead.
    Hope you would think before spreading such false information. Thanks

  9. Kamran Afridi  April 18, 2019 12:06 am/ Reply

    Karachi ka public transport ajj bhi gair mehfooz hay pakistan ko chalanay walay city k pass na achi sarkay hain na buses hain.. Roo dhoo k awam Ching chi main safar karnay per majboor hain… Karachi ki sarkoo per truck har time ap ko nazar aiay gay…11 bjy k baad ki timing hoti hay…DIG traffic Mehar sahbb es per bhi tawajoo dain

  10. Mohammad Ahmed  April 19, 2019 3:39 pm/ Reply

    us waqt say bachin phir koi na ajay

  11. Zahoor  April 15, 2020 7:06 pm/ Reply

    85 percent Karachities are not allowed to run city because they speak a prticular language and they migrated from INDIA

  12. Syed Zubair  April 16, 2020 11:50 pm/ Reply

    This report is not correct in contents. You should also mention what was the attitude of these bus and taxi drivers with the local population. There was race which was going on between the two mini buses and one bus driver even did not stopped after the accident. In this story no interview have been taken from actual local people.

  13. ASLAM PERVEZ  April 16, 2021 2:39 pm/ Reply


  14. Ahmed  April 21, 2021 2:58 pm/ Reply

    Transport Mafia at its best jingoism,

    This nation needs a overhaul,

    RIP Bushra and many others who died because of these drivers .

  15. Ahmed Furqan Syed.  April 26, 2021 10:16 am/ Reply

    Agree with Syed Zubair, Zahoor & Kamran Afridi. Samaa is reporting biased against local city population i.e: Muhajrs.

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