Popularly quoted as the “Hijabi Biker” in Delhi, Roshni Misbah and her Honda CBR 250 are catching all the attention which meant she acquired a celebrity status in a short span of time. Though she belongs to a community which often confines women from following their dreams, its indeed an inspiring story to listen.
Roshni studies Arab Islamic Culture at Jamia Millia Islamia in New Delhi and her passion to ride bikes existed since she was a child. Though many advised her to use a gearless bike to get to college, her love for bikes made her buy a Bajaj Avenger Cruiser 220 as soon as she got admission at Jamia.
Speaking of her first riding experience, Roshni said to Hindustan Times that she rode her first bike when she was in her 9th standard. “Unlike many girls, I wanted to ride a bike rather than a scooty (gearless). I always had a passion for bikes and I am fulfilling it,” she said.
Five months post joining the college, she got herself a Royal Enfield 500cc bike as she always loved the sound and feel which comes with it. Who wouldn’t love Royal Enfield ain’t it? Currently, her CBR 250 is the point of attraction for many bikers.
“It is sad that women are expected to only cook, get married and have children. This despite the fact that women are excelling in all the fields,” she said. “My uncles and everyone else would ask my father why he had given me a bike because it is not meant for girls, and even, who would marry me?”
There is often a misconception among many that bikers are known to do stunts and violate many traffic rules. But Roshni says she never attempts to do any silly stuff. “I never break the rules, I don’t do stunts. In fact I try to raise awareness on safe biking. And I always wear safety gear when I am on the road.”
Talking about the fame that she had acquired, “People recognize me on the road, I see students waving at me, I also wave at them.” She also states that she has immense respect for her Hijabi religion but that doesn’t mean she will let go of dreams and wishes.
“Hijab is very much a part of me. Religion is no hurdle, hijab is no hurdle for me. I pray five times a day, I practise my religion. But that doesn’t stop me from riding a bike. Hijab is part of my faith and culture. I study Arabic culture, and I read about so many women in West Asia moving ahead with their hijab. If they can do it, why can’t I?” she said.
Truly an inspiring woman ain’t she? She lives her her setting up her own rules and regulations and no stereotypes stop her from doing that. Kudos to their parents and all the parents across the country, who support their girl child to follow their dreams regardless of living in a narrow minded society.