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First drop

Oct 07,2017 - Last updated at Oct 07,2017

There is more to the recent decision in Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive a car than meets the eye.

The bold step is no doubt a forerunner of other sweeping reforms that Riyadh is bound to take in favour of women’s rights.

Even though the decision to permit women to drive a car will not take immediate effect, it still ushers in a new dawn in the conservative country, empowering women and boosting the national economy in many ways.

Saudi Arabia was a pariah country among the family of nations till now because of forbidding women to drive, thus ensuring their mobility and providing opportunities to work.

Driving a car is a licence for other emancipating steps that will surely follow.

As Manal Al Sharif, who was arrested back in 2011 for driving a car in protest against the ban, said after women were given green light to drive, “rain begins with a single drop”. One can expect many other drops to follow in favour of women.

Granting women their legitimate rights cannot stop at driving a car. This is only the beginning of a long process that will gradually be introduced in the country.

Saudi Arabia is moving in the right direction on women’s rights. It is expected to progressively expand the list of rights that women can enjoy.

Women in Saudi Arabia already hold government positions and have made inroads in the private sector as well.

Soon enough, one can expect women to occupy high posts in government.


The country can now join the rest of nations in ratifying important human rights instruments touching women’s lives, in particular.

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