Named to Time 100 thrice, Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai exhibits phenomenal grit and inspires young girls everywhere. An assassination attempt by Islamic fundamentalists could not dampen her spirit, and she fought back with a bestselling memoir and won the Nobel Peace Prize as its youngest recipient, at 17.
Benazir Bhutto was a Pakistani politician who served as Pakistan's prime minister in two separate terms and became the first woman in a Muslim majority nation to lead a democratic government. She was assassinated, at the age of 54, and after her death has been revered by many as an icon for women's rights.
Pakistani actor Mahira Khan began her career as a VJ with MTV and is best known for her award-winning performance in the telenovela Humsafar. She also gained fame with her Bollywood movie Raees, starring Shah Rukh Khan. The divorced mother of one was on BBC's 100 Women in 2010.
Pakistani actor Mawra Hocane is best known for her performances in serials such as Ek Tamanna Lahasil Si and Aahista Aahista. She also appeared in the Bollywood romantic tragedy Sanam Teri Kasam. She co-owns a clothing line and is equipped with a law degree from the University of London.
Bushra Maneka, popularly known as Bushra Bibi, is the current First Lady of Pakistan. She married Imran Khan six months prior to his ascendency as the prime minister of Pakistan. As First Lady, Bushra remains fairly inactive in political matters, but supports her husband's vision for Pakistan.
Pakistani actor Sajal Ali soared to fame with her performances in films such as Mohabbat Jaye Bhar Mein and Quddusi Sahab Ki Bewah. She later made her Lollywood debut with the film Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hay and soon stepped into Bollywood with the Sridevi starrer Mom.
Known as the Queen of Pop in South Asia back in the 1980s, Pakistani singer Nazia Hassan soared to fame with tracks such as Aap Jaisa Koi and Boom Boom. She began her career as part of a duo with her brother, Zoheb Hassan. She died of lung cancer at 35.
Noor Jehan was a Pakistani actress and playback singer. In a career spanning over 60 years, she is estimated to have sung around 20,000 songs. One of the most important Pakistani singers of all time, Noor Jehan is also widely regarded as one of the most influential and greatest South Asian singers of all time.
Geeta Bali was an Indian actress best remembered for her work in Hindi language films. Bali appeared in over 70 movies in a career spanning more than a decade. Geeta Bali's acting career was cut short when she died at age 35 due to smallpox.
Fatima Jinnah was a Pakistani politician, stateswoman, and dental surgeon. She was the younger sister of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. Fatima worked closely with her elder brother, who often sought the advice of his sister. Fatima Jinnah is also credited with co-founding the All Pakistan Women's Association, which aims at promoting the welfare of Pakistani women.
Sanam Saeed is a Pakistani singer, actress, and former model. Saeed is best known for playing Kashaf Murtaza in a TV series titled Zindagi Gulzar Hai, which earned her many awards including the Lux Style Award. In 2019, Sanam Saeed was adjudged Pride of Pakistan by Daily Times.
Sara Loren is a Pakistani model and actress best known for her work in Hindi and Urdu language films. In 2013, she won the Tarang Housefull Award for her portrayal of Anjum Hayat Khan in a telefilm titled Anjuman. Sara Loren achieved popularity in India in 2015 when she played the title role in a Bollywood romantic film titled Barkhaa.
Arfa Karim was a Pakistani computer prodigy. She became the youngest Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) in 2004 and held the title until 2008. She represented Pakistan on various international forums and received Pakistan's highest literary award, the Presidential Pride of Performance, in 2005. The bright young girl suffered from ill health and died at the age of just 16.
Popular Pakistani actor and model Ayeza Khan soared to fame with serials such as Mohabbat Tumse Nafrat Hai and Mere Paas Tum Ho. In 2022, she became the first Pakistani star to gain 12 million followers on Instagram. She is married to actor-model Danish Taimoor and is a mother of two.
Yumna Zaidi is a Pakistani actress best known for her contribution to the Urdu-television industry in Pakistan. One of the most important and popular television actresses of her generation, Yumna Zaidi is renowned for her versatility. Zaidi is also one of the most decorated actresses of her generation, having won three Lux Style Awards so far in her career.
While fans named her Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian, social-media celebrity Qandeel Baloch made headlines when she was strangled to death by her brother for bringing dishonor to her conservative Muslim family. Qandeel was known for her outrageous antics, such as promising a strip-tease if the Pakistani cricket team won against India.
One of Pakistan’s most popular actresses, Mehwish Hayat is the daughter of popular TV actor Rukhsar Hayat. The National Civil Award and Tamgha-e-Imtiaz-winning actor is also a talented singer. She is best known for her blockbuster hit films such as Load Wedding and has also starred in series such as Ru Baru.
Pakistani actor and presenter Sanam Baloch is known for her award-winning roles in serials such as Dastaan and Sehra Teri Pyas. She has also hosted programs such as Morning with Hum. She married Samaa TV host Abdullah Farhatullah, though the couple separated a few years later, following which she remarried.
Pakistani actor Veena Malik gained fame with her female-centric roles in films such as Kabhi Pyar Na Karna. She later also appeared in Bollywood films and the Indian reality show Bigg Boss. She once got a 26-year prison sentence for appearing in a blasphemous program, though she didn’t serve the sentence.
Neelam Muneer is a Pakistani actor who began her career as a teenaged model and is now known for her performances in serials such as Dil Mom Ka Diya and Umm-e-Haniya, with the former earning her a Lux Style Award nomination. She has also starred in films such as Chupan Chupai and Chakkar.
Humaima Malik is a Pakistani model and actress. She is best known for playing imporant roles in popular TV serials like Ishq Junoon Deewangi and Akbari Asghari. Humaima Malik has also played leading roles in films like Raja Natwarlal and Dekh Magar Pyaar Say.
Zeba Bakhtiar is a Pakistani actress and television director. She is best known for her performance in the 1995 musical film Sargam, for which she won the Nigar Award under the Best Actress category. Zeba Bakhtiar also participates in campaigns to create awareness about diabetes.
Meesha Shafi is a Pakistani-born Canadian actress, model, artist, and singer. She is best known for her portrayal of Laxmi in a 2013 Pakistani action-thriller film titled Waar, which earned her an ARY Film Award under the Best Supporting Actress category. Waar remains one of the highest-grossing films in Pakistan.
Hina Rabbani Khar is a Pakistani politician who became the first woman and the youngest person to serve as the Foreign Minister of Pakistan; she was in the office from 2011 to 2013. Prior to serving as the Foreign Minister, Hina Rabbani Khar also became the first female politician to present the national budget in 2009 while serving as the Minister of Finance of Pakistan.
Pakistani actor Ushna Shah rose to fame with serials such as Bashar Momin and Thoda Sa Aasman. The York University alumna also starred in Pakistan’s first online comedy, Oye Kuch Kar Guzar. Her performance in the serial Alif Allah Aur Insaan won her a Hum Award for the best negative role.
Hareem Farooq is a Pakistani actress and film producer. She is best known for her portrayal of Arjumand Suhaib Khan in the television serial Diyar-e-Dil. In 2018, Hareem Farooq became the first woman to host the Pakistan Super League.
The daughter of famous Pakistani journalist and author Hameed Akhtar, actor Saba Hameed is known for her roles in serials such as Kahin Deep Jaley and Fitoor. She has usually been seen playing a mother on screen. The Pride of Performance winner has also won a PTV Award for the sitcom Family Front.
Yasmine Yousaf is a Pakistani American singer, songwriter, and rapper. She is best known as one half of the popular American electronic dance music duo, Krewella, which also includes her sister Jahan Yousaf. Yasmine Yousaf and her sister achieved popularity in 2013 when they released their debut studio album, Get Wet, which peaked at number eight on the Billboard 200.
Somy Ali is a Pakistani-American actress, model, writer, filmmaker, and activist. She is best known for her work in Bollywood films. Also an activist, Somy Ali is credited with founding a non-profit organization called No More Tears, which aims at protecting women from domestic violence and sexual abuse.
Tehmina Durrani is a Pakistani author and artist. She is also a well-known activist for women's and children's rights. She came to prominence after writing a book about being abused by her famous politician husband, Ghulam Mustafa Khar, who she divorced. She actively supports the social rehabilitation of women. She later married politician Shahbaz Sharif.
British-Pakistani actor and singer Salma Agha was 9 when she moved from Pakistan to Britain. She later soared to fame with the Bollywood film Nikaah and its hit track Dil Ke Armaan, which won her a Filmfare for Best Female Playback. She was once married to Pakistani squash star Rahmat Khan.
Sohai Ali Abro is a Pakistani actress, model, and dancer. She is best known for her work in Pakistani films and television serials. She achieved popularity in 2016 when she played Zoya in an adventure comedy film titled Jawani Phir Nahi Ani, for which she received the ARY Film Award for Best Actress.
Best known for her track Lambi Judai from the Bollywood film Hero, Pride of Performance-winning Pakistani folk singer Reshma was popular both in Pakistan and India. Born into a gypsy family in Rajasthan in British India, she had no formal education. She sang at shrines and was scouted at age 12.
Hania Aamir is a Pakistani actress best known for her work in Pakistani TV serials, such as Phir Wohi Mohabbat, Mere Humsafar, and Sang-e-Mah. Her portrayal of Alishba Ashar in Phir Wohi Mohabbat earned her a Hum Award in 2018. Hania Aamir has also earned critical acclaim for her performances in serials like Titli, Dil Ruba, and Anaa.
Momal Sheikh is a Pakistani actress and film producer. She is best known for her work in television. Over the years, Momal Sheikh has played important roles in popular TV series such as Silsilay, Yaariyan, and Damsa.
Fatima Bhutto is a Pakistani writer and journalist. She is the daughter of politician Murtaza Bhutto and a granddaughter of former Prime Minister and President of Pakistan, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. She studied at the University of London. As a journalist, she has written for The News and The Guardian among other publications. She is multilingual.
Iman Ali is a Pakistani model, actress, and singer. She is best known for her portrayal of Maryam in the 2007 drama film Khuda Kay Liye, which earned her two Lux Style Awards for Best Actress. Apart from acting in films and TV serials, Iman Ali also appears in music videos.
Syra Yousuf is a Pakistani actress, model, and former VJ. She is best known for her portrayal of Resham in a 2017 Pakistani romance film titled Chalay Thay Saath, for which she received the Galaxy Lollywood Award under the Best Female Debut category.
Initially an English lecturer at the Army Public College in Sialkot, Pakistani author Umera Ahmad later devoted herself to writing and emerged as one of the best-known authors of Urdu fiction and screenplays. The novel Pir-e-Kamil and the drama series Meri Zaat Zarra-e-Benishan remain her best-known works.
Sanam Jung is a Pakistani model, actress, and former television host. Since making her TV debut in Dil e Muztar, Jung has played lead roles in several TV serials like Muhabbat Subha Ka Sitara Hai, Mere Humdum Mere Dost, and Mein Na Janoo. Sanam Jung has also hosted popular TV shows like Jago Pakistan Jago and Hum Awards.
Sonya Jehan is a Pakistani actress best known for her work in Hindi and Urdu-language films. Jehan has played important roles in critically acclaimed films like My Name Is Khan, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, and Ho Mann Jahaan. Her portrayal of Sabina in the coming-of-age musical drama film, Ho Mann Jahaan, earned her a Nigar Award nomination.