"However, factors other than my specialization govern the outcome of my job interviews."
Author: Alfisha Sabri
As opposed to the popular view, education might not be the key to success and upliftment. The real world is darker and un-simple. As postcolonial subjects, the English language is a burden thrust upon us and we have taken it upon ourselves to carry this burden forward. Its presence can do wonders in terms of social mobility, however, its absence is a curse that multiplies all struggles and cuts down opportunities exponentially. I achieved a great Karnataka state rank in my Automobile Diploma CET, the first rank in final-year Diploma in Automobile, and I have the license and the capability to drive any and all vehicles. Yet, I have been finding it difficult to secure a job for the past four years.
I come from a rural area in Karnataka, and unlike what is in vogue today, the medium of my education was the regional language- Kannada. It wasn't English. I look for jobs in technical departments, which is my area of specialization. However, factors other than my specialization govern the outcome of my job interviews. I have often been dismissed and rejected for lacking in "communication skills" even though I communicate quite well in Kannada, Hindi, and Urdu. Sometimes, I am even asked about my hijab, as if a piece of cloth determines my capabilities more than my degree. In a world that is already critical of Muslims, more so Muslim women, and especially hijabi women, the barrier of language multiplies my already existent hurdles. I dream of working at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) one day, and every day I hope and pray that the margins that I am currently placed in aren't unconquerable.