Embracing the genetic condition which causes a person to look unusually white, a British family has bagged the Guinness World Records title for most siblings with albinism, after they applied for it. According to the Guinness World Records website, the six siblings Naseem Akhtar, Ghulam Ali, Haider Ali, Muqadas Bibi, Musarat Begum, and the youngest, Mohammed Rafi inherited the condition from their Pakistan-born parents Aslam Parvez and Shameem Akhtar. A person suffering from albinism usually lacks an adequate amount of a pigment known as Melanin since birth. This pigment is responsible for determining the colour of eyes, hair and skin, and thus albino people look different. One of the siblings, Naseem Akhtar, who applied for the record, works as an NHS rehabilitation officer and is described by her siblings as the mother figure. Having faced bullying in school and college due to their distinct appearance, the siblings share a close relationship with each other and even work to educate others on the genetic condition.
Apart from the albino genes that are common in the siblings, one thing that they all share is optimism and a positive approach towards life as Naseem said, “One blessing was that our albinism made us closer than other siblings because we all shared something different, very unique.”
The siblings learned to stick together through difficulties and helped each other in dealing with impaired eyesight caused by the condition. Another sibling Rafi shared that he embraced the condition as he liked the attention it draws from people. He said that people often compliment his eyes due to their unique shade. Explaining the condition, Rafi added that the lack of pigment in the irises makes them look translucent and even allows it to change colour under different lights.
Naseem now hopes to inspire people with their optimism and determination to grow despite suffering from the condition. “I always believed something good would happen, maybe being Guinness World Records title holders is that good thing,” she added.