We all know Little Karim – the porter who was given the name ‘little’ because of his height. But he had his dreams, and he knew that he would stop at nothing to make them come true – he became a porter to a Swiss team, that lacked porters, and made his mark. He is just one of many great people – the other being the pride of Pakistan Ali Sadpara. We have recently lost the legendary Muhammad Karim also known as Little Karim.
“My name is Muhammad Hanif. I am the son of the international hero ‘Little Karim’. My father is ill. Around Rs10,000-12,000 is spent monthly on my father’s medicines. I have not been earning any remuneration for the last two years,” his son said. Sharing his father’s wish for setting up a climbing school, Hanif said that he has sold his native house to buy the equipment for the school. He added that the family has no home to live in the village.
The people of Gilgit live a very tough life, but with all of that, all the hardships and the hurdles that they face, they don’t stop at anything to make their dreams come true and to make sure that the world knows of the adventures that they have had. They don’t have the same opportunities as most people who live in the south, or the resources but their passion knows no bounds.
And when a person’s motives are right, and their heart is in the right place – the world makes ways for them to be able to follow their dreams. It is perhaps for this reason that Little Karim was able to meet Ronaldo – the man that he was a fan of for a very long time, in 2018, during his visit to Spain.
Some of Mr. Karim’s achievements include: successfully climbing Gasherbrum-2 (8,035m) in 1985 and without oxygen in 1988 and Broad Peak (8,048m) in 1986. He also attempted climbing K2 (8,611m) nine times, but weather conditions remained unfavorable each time. He also rescued a few foreign mountaineers by putting his life at great risk.
But little Karim, the great man is no longer with us. It saddens us but now all we can do is make sure that we keep his legacy alive and never forget the man that he was. He was a source of beacon – and we pray for his soul.