This Kashmiri Woman Fulfils Her Entrepreneurial Dreams

29 November 2015
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
Rifat Mohidin

Srinagar: When Sobia Amin (23) shared the idea of opening a salon in the Valley with her family members, it was a challenge for her to get the idea accepted. She knew that her family would ask hundreds of questions as every girl would be asked in a conservative society like Kashmir. But to her surprise, instead of opposition, her father gave her all the support that he could to make the dream of his daughter come true. 'I thought that I would be asked what if it did not work or why do this work being a girl. But thankfully, my father was very supportive in every way. He encouraged my entrepreneur dream,' said Sobia while sitting at her newly opened salon 'Hap Looks' in Srinagar that was inaugurated today. The idea of opening a style café-cum-salon came to Sobia while she was pursuing a course in fashion designing from Mumbai. 'I was inspired by the big salons that are in cities like Mumbai. I thought that instead of doing a job in any other state, why not offer services like these in Kashmir,' said Sobia. She believed in offering better services to the fashion conscious younger generation of Kashmir without making a hole in their pockets. 'Hap Looks' has kept a special 50 per cent discount for students, a service that is hardly available in other style cafés in the summer capital. 'Today's generation spends a huge amount on their looks as they want to look good. I want to cater to the fashion needs of Kashmir's young people at an affordable price,' she said. 'We have a special discount for students as we want to cater to every class,' said Sobia, hailing from Dooru Village in south Kashmir. Sobia tried to get the best salon workers from the country to provide the services here on a par with other states of the country. 'I have got some of the best salon workers from Chandigarh. Some of them have worked in Bollywood and reputed organisations in the country,' she said. 'Customer satisfaction is my first motive while money will follow with quality work,' said Sobia. She added that hers was the first style café in Srinagar where services like Wi-Fi and lunge were available where people can relax mostly children. In the last few years, as unemployment was showing a rise in Kashmir, many young persons were coming up with their own units and moving towards entrepreneurship.