"Focus on Opportunities in Civil Service and Government" Panel Discussion
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15/10/2019 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Portcullis House 1 Parliament Street London SW1A 2JR


Event Start Date:
10th August 2019
Event End Date:
10th August 2019
Event Venue:

Join us for our Focus on Opportunities in Civil Service and Government Panel Discussion. This event is produced to guide, inspire and assist those who wish to pursue a career within the civil service, government & politics.

The panel discussion will look at Personal career paths & journeys as well as the different routes into the various areas within the civil service, government and politics.

We will explore the challenges of being British Pakistani and BAME in civil service, government and politics & gain an understanding to the outline of the main objectives, policy and entry criteria of each branch of civil service, government department or political party.

For those who wish to pursue a career within civil service, government and politics, the panellist will give you some advice followed by a Q&A session!

Keynote speaker:

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi

A lawyer, a businesswoman, a campaigner and a cabinet minister, Sayeeda Warsi has had many roles, but she is best known for being the first Muslim to serve in a British cabinet. In August 2014 she resigned from Government citing the Government’s “morally indefensible” policy on Gaza.

In 2007 she was elevated to the House of Lords aged 36, making her the youngest peer in Parliament. Later that year she traveled to Sudan and famously helped to secure the release of the British teacher Gillian Gibbons who was on trial for blasphemy.

From 2007 to 2010 she served in the Shadow Cabinet as Minister for Community Cohesion and Social Action. In 2010 she was appointed by Prime Minister David Cameron as Minister without Portfolio and Chairman of the Conservative Party

In Government she led the largest ministerial delegation to the Vatican, famously declared that Islamophobia had “passed the dinner table test” and established the Remembering Srebrenica programme.

Sayeeda is Chair of the Baroness Warsi Foundation and a Trustee of the Savayra Foundation. Sayeeda is Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Bolton, an Advisor to Georgetown University Washington DC and Visiting Professor at St Marys – the oldest Catholic university in the UK.

Baroness Warsi has consistently been voted one of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the world and in 2018 was voted in a Sky News poll as of the top 50 women to have had a big impact on Britain as we know it today.

Baroness Warsi’s first book, The Enemy Within: A Tale of Muslim Britain has been billed as “a vital book at a critical time…a seminal text on British Muslims”.


Our inspirational panellists include:

Faisal Rashid (Labour MP)

In 2017, Faisal successfully stood for as Member of Parliament (MP) for Warrington South, winning the seat back for Labour Party after 7 years of Conservative rule and from a sitting minister. Since entering parliament, he has been appointed as a member of the International Trade Select Committee – responsible for scrutinising Britain’s overseas trade policy and ensuring that we build sustainable, long term links between the UK and international markets. Faisal founded and now chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Belt & Road Initiative and China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a cross-party forum promoting UK awareness and understanding of both global trading initiatives. He also chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Groups for Business Support and Engagement, Healthcare Infrastructure and Trade Justice.


Shabnam Chaudhri (Detective Superintendent, Metropolitan Police)

Born in Karachi, Pakistan Shabnam came to London with her family at the age of two and settled in the East End of London where she lived and was educated in Newham.

In 1989, despite family and community pressures she achieved her dream goal and joined the Metropolitan Police Service.

Shabnam is a role model, both internally and externally across London and has received a number of awards, including the National & International Leadership award in the British Association for Women in Policing (BAWP) for her contributions to policing, in particular her work around forced marriage and Honor Based Violence. During 2017, she was nominated for, and won the national No2H8 Crime Award for her ‘Outstanding Contribution’ to the fight against hate crime.

In 2016 she developed her own unique ‘Girls Allowed’ brand and has hosted themed events across London, the most recent in 2018, Tackling Knife & Hate Crime in Partnership with over 400 attendees, including key note address from the Deputy Mayor of Policing & Crime.

She now leads at Havering, Barking & Dagenham and Redbridge.

In her personal life she enjoys adventure activity travelling to remote places and is known to take on challenges completely outside of her comfort zone. She has cycled, across Vietnam, South Africa and most recently Amritsar to Shimla, covering over 300 miles, accenting to more than 35,000 feet over 10 days into altitude.

Shabnam currently remains the MPS only Muslim female detective at this rank


Imran Shafi (Private Secretary to the Prime Minister) 

Imran is Private Secretary to the Prime Minister, with specific responsibility for health, education and other key public services. He has previously worked at HM Treasury, the House of Commons and in the private sector with McKinsey & Company. He has degrees from Oxford and Cambridge Universities.




Sara Rathore (Senior Policy Advisor, Civil Service)

Sara Rathore currently works as a Senior Policy Advisor in the Civil Service and is the Chair of the Home Office Islamic Network. Prior to this Sara was a qualified criminal and financial investigator for the Home Office. She has travelled with work representing HMG overseas from Pakistan, France and UAE.

Sara graduated from the University of Leeds in Modern Arabic and read Postgraduate Masters in Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Manchester.

Outside work Sara is mum to her two sons. Sara is a strong advocate for women supporting women by sharing the skills she has gained and is an ambassador for Pakistan Alliance for Girls Education.
Sara enjoys spending time with her family, coaching and mentoring young BAME women, travelling and learning new skills.



Hashim Bhatti (Councillor for Clewer North)

Hashim Bhatti is a former councillor from the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead. He completed a 4year term in May 2019 as one of the youngest councillors in the Borough and he was the first British Pakistani in Windsor to be elected. He is also the Chair of the Youth wing of the Conservative Muslim Forum. Hashim has a corporate law background and is currently the CEO of HB Capital.


Find out more about the British Pakistan Foundation here: https://www.britishpakistanfoundation.com/


Register for the event at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/focus-on-opportunities-in-civil-service-and-government-panel-discussion-tickets-64314085160