HIP Exclusive: Meet Namira Salim, the First Pakistani Astronaut
HIP Exclusive: Meet Namira Salim, the First Pakistani Astronaut

HIP Exclusive: Meet Namira Salim, the First Pakistani Astronaut

She is the first Pakistani to have reached the North Pole in April 2017 and the South Pole in January 2008.

Updated Aug 19, 2019 05:53pm

Hailing from Karachi, Namira is an impassioned traveller. She is the first Pakistani to have travelled to the North and South poles and the first Asian to skydive (in tandem) from Mount Everest. She hoisted a peace flag on behalf of the nation at the two poles of the world.

In 2013, she was awarded the ‘Power of 100 Trailblazer Award’ in London for her efforts to promote international peace and harmony. In 2015, she founded her non-profit ‘Space Trust’ to promote Space as the New Frontier for Peace, particularly to support the work of the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs. In September 2018, she, along with her UN partners, established the first space conference during the UN General Assembly High-Level Week, when all world leaders gather in New York.

Its A dream for some of us to be able to go into space, some even dream to be able to do what Namira has done.

We sat down with Namira and asked her about her life and passion:

Which current devolopment regarding space is most interesting to you? Namira: The privatisation of space and the advent of the private space industry which means that space tourism is now a reality and space is open to all sectors.

How can space be more accomodating for women in minorities? NS: Space is actually very accomodating for women in minorities all across the world. We just need to open Pakistan more to the private sector of the space industry and give opportunities to more people to get involved in space Industry outside Pakistan.

How did you survive the rigourous training of a space pilot? NS: The space flight that we are going to have is the sub orbital space flight. It's alot easier on the body, its a two day training. It involves g-forces that we'll experience during our entire flight. Because our flight won't go up from ground up it'll be carried by a mothership to 50,000 feet and go from there as a result of that it wont be very very hard on the body and its commercially viable and anyone who's basically fit can do such a flight.

What is this commemorative event inspired by? NS: This year marks the 50th anniversary of the first man on the moon, Omega has taken out a limited collection of the watch.

Can you tell me about the Omega watch collection 'Moon and the Moonshine Gold watches' and the inspiration behind it? NS: Being a friend of the brand, I had to come and show support to the Omega watch collection which was inspired by the golden moments of the lunar landings, called the Moon and the Moonshine Gold watches. It is a one of a kind watch that works on the moon too! It's an exact replica of what was given to the astronauts back in the day.

Do you think that space life would be accesible to the masses in the future? NS: Ofcourse, that's the whole point pf privatization of space and space tourism. And it's already accesible because the private space flight that I'll be taking is with Virgin galatic which is the first private space flight of the world and there are many other companies whose actually going to do the same thing.

Whats the next step for you? Would you like to give a message to your country men and women? NS: Yes, Space is the new frontier for peace on earth.

Namira Salim would be the first Pakistani to go in space as an astronaut. She will be taking off with Virgin Galatic on a flight of 6 pilots.

We wish her best of luck!