Soccer balls from Pakistan
Maybe you like to play soccer or at least like to watch? Did you know that most of the soccer balls played around the world come from Pakistan? There is a town here called Sialkot, which is where 70 out of 100 soccer balls in the world are made.
Pakistani sewers produce a football for a few cents, which is later sold for around 100 euros. But the workers who sew footballs there are doing better than others in Pakistan. At least they have secured their small income in order to be able to feed their families. 35 million soccer balls are sent from this location all over the world every year.
The history of Pakistani football
The sewing of footballs began during the British colonial era. The English have always loved to play soccer, so there was a great need for new soccer balls. So they started very early with the production of soccer balls by hand and developed a great skill in this field of work, which improved over many years.
Such a soccer ball, which is sewn by hand, costs three euros to produce. The workers earn around 70 euros a month. When there are world championships or European championships, production increases. Sometimes the manual work is still done at home, individual work steps are carried out at home and the wives and daughters of the workers also help here.
Children sew (d) soccer balls
For a long time, children were also used to sew. Until an outcry went through the world. Small children sew footballs for the major sports companies around the world. Nobody wanted such a football anymore. The big manufacturers saw their sales drop and feared financial losses. They are now checking whether children are sewing the soccer balls. The constant control also works fortunately. Children are rarely found at work.
The downside of this development is that now many children work in the brickworks and haul stones there. And here nobody checks that exactly. So today we can at least buy a football with a clearer conscience, but the children’s situation has still not improved.
Is it still like that?
China has now overtaken Pakistan in the manufacture of soccer balls. In Chinese factories, footballs are now made with machines, which of course doesn’t require as many workers. Some people have to operate the machines, but it doesn’t take as many sewers as it takes to handcraft a football.
Incidentally, the Pakistanis themselves have little to do with football, there are almost no football fields. The people of Pakistan much prefer to play cricket and they are much better at it.
No equality in Pakistan
The Pakistani constitution of 1973 states that no distinction should be made between men and women in Pakistan. But life for women and girls is more dangerous in Pakistan than in many other places in the world. Only in the Congo and Afghanistan is it more dangerous. Pakistan is one of those countries in which girls and women often cannot lead a carefree life and are exposed to the risk of abuse and loss of their lives. And that’s just because they’re female. Why is that?
Wedding instead of school
There are many reasons. Old customs and traditions are still very important in Pakistan. For men and women. And many women haven’t even learned to resist or to question their role at all. How should they? Their parents set an example for them and they don’t go to school. How should they know that women can also lead independent lives? For more information about Pakistan and Asia, please visit dentistrymyth.
Many girls are married off very young. Incidentally, this applies not only to Muslims, but also to the Christian women who live in Pakistan – albeit in smaller numbers. This forced marriage is not only due to faith, but perhaps more to the cultural tradition of the country. The women then usually live with their in-laws. If you don’t get along with them, you’re out of luck.
Especially in the areas on the border with Afghanistan, women are often treated badly. If you want to vote here, you may have to atone for it with your life. Here, the tribal rules demand that women should not interfere in public life, and certainly not in politics. Women are not allowed to own anything, nor can they inherit anything in order to be able to live independently if they are already not working. In Pakistan women do not play a role in public life. You rarely see them on the street, and when they do, they are usually accompanied by a man. You also meet many veiled women. Especially under the Taliban government, it was demanded that women live in seclusion, this is called parda.
Educated women in Pakistan
There are still some women in Pakistan who go to school and are very educated. They then have the best chance of living independently of their husbands. For example, women in Pakistan can work as doctors or nurses. This is even desired, simply because a woman is not allowed to see a male doctor.
Women can also work as teachers. Of course there are also factory workers and women in the fields in agriculture. Some people in Pakistan are slowly realizing that they have to give women education in order to put an end to this oppression and are committed to it.
Only with the man’s permission
It is crucial that the married woman’s family give her permission to work. In Pakistan – and in many other countries – the prevailing opinion is that the husband has to take care of the family’s livelihood.
That might sound strange, but it wasn’t that long ago in the Federal Republic of Germany women were only allowed to work with the permission of men. This law existed until 1974. But no matter where in the world women should be able to decide where and when they want to work. In Pakistan, as there is usually no school education, they have no right choice.