Bangladesh’s new identity has a lot to do with women.

Both the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition in Bangladesh have been women for a long time.

In business, government or private jobs, academics, health services, and sports, women are proving their worth like no time before. And now they have even conquered Mount Everest. Nishat Majumder (31) recently became the first Bangladeshi woman to scale the world’s highest peak.

Along with M.A. Muhith, who is the lone Bangladeshi to scale the peak twice from both sides, Nishat climbed the summit from the northern side of Nepal. Plan Bangladesh, an NGO that sponsored the expedition, said Nishat’s effort was dedicated to a global campaign — “Because I am a Girl”, to be launched around the world on the International Day of the Girl Child on October 11.

Musa Ebrahim, a journalist, was the first Bangladeshi to conquer Mount Everest two years ago.

Just a week after the commendable feat, Wasfia Nazreen (29), another Bangladeshi woman, conquered the Everest. Wasfia has dedicated the victory to the sacrifices of the martyrs of 1971. Wasifa also became the first Bangladeshi woman to scale the highest peak of Africa, the Uhuru, Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and the highest peak of Mount Aconcagua in Argentina earlier.

Soft spoken, an accountant by profession, Nishat doesn’t fit the conventional image of a tough, strapping mountaineer. “An avalanche knocked me down and partially buried me; I thought it was all over. People usually question a girl’s ability. But I have proved them wrong.”

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