Shaukat Rana with his family members.
Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter
The result of hard work is always grand, said Shaukat Rana, a Pakistani expatriate who has been residing in Dubai for over five decades.
His journey of life in Dubai started in 1968 when he along with his family came here on a flight of British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) from Karachi.
“But my father came to Dubai in 1964 and first worked in a bank and soon joined Pakistan International Airlines (PIA),” he said while sharing his story with Gulf Today.
Shaukat Rana came to Dubai in 1968. Then he was 8 years old. In the beginning, his family lived in Cola Colony.
“The area is widely known these days as Karama as rent at that time was around Dhs2,000 per year for a 3-bed-room villa.
“The residential area famous as ‘Cola Colony’ was developed by the US beverage company.
“Now Sheikh Hamdan colony is there in its place,” Shaukat Rana added.
His father had a passion for photography and his camera captured all the leading places of Dubai.
“I have a huge collection of old photographs,” he said.
Shaukat’s mother was an active social worker and helped the communities on various occasions.
For her community services, the Pakistan Association Dubai (PAD) has been prominently displaying her photo along with her PAD Card as its first member in the main hall of Pakistan Auditorium.
“During the ’70s, doing business was not as easy as it is today,” said Shaukat Rana.
Now Rana’s business has developed into a group of companies in his father’s name ‘Rafi Group of Companies’.
“In the 80s, we used to travel all over the world to be part of leading trade fairs and business meetings but now all important global companies and brands are coming to the UAE on a regular basis,” he said.
Rana is living in Mirdiff, Dubai with his family. He has three sons and a daughter.
“In 1980, we were the first family to move and construct our home in this (Mirdiff) area and since then we are residing with great peace of mind and enjoying all the necessities,” he added.
There are many expatriates in the country who utilise their every effort to be successful in their particular field and turn shining stars for their own community. They stand tall in the over 200 expatriate communities that co-exist in the country.
There was a time when people tried to make the most of their leisure hours. They had more than enough time in their possession all the time and they sat together and spent it profusely in different ways. The discussion on what was happening around them was prominent among many other interesting things. Folklore and poetry also interested many of them and people fond of such things knew how to dominate the sessions.
“Pakistani missions in UAE have successfully repatriated around 2870 stranded Pakistanis using 15 special flights, 56 non-corona dead bodies have also been repatriated over the last two weeks and with the operation of more flights, these numbers will increase.”
Around 55,000 Pakistani expatriates have lost their jobs including 36,000 in the UAE during the last couple of months especially after the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) while a number of new opportunities are also coming out for the skilled labourers in the country.
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