Pakistani “Chai Wala” Turns Model After Viral Photo

By amin | Comments: 0 | October 24, 2016

From “Chai Wala” to International model?

Have you heard this story? This blue-eyed chai wala just had his whole life changed and it’s all because of a photo.


In case you didn’t hear the original story, 18-year-old Arshad Khan was working at a tea (chai) stall in the Itwar Bazaar market in Islamabad, Pakistan when a photographer by the name of Jiah Ali snapped his photo. She shared the photo on her social media with the caption “Hot-tea” and within a couple of days the photo had gone viral. Currently the photo has close to 30,000 likes on Instagram and has been picked up by numerous media outlets.

The photo that changed his life

The photo that changed his life

What a great candid photo eh? Jiah was able to snap him in action at the right moment when his piercing blue eyes were looking straight into the camera. After posting the photo and seeing it take off, Jiah returned to the market and tracked Arshad down to find out more about him.

Within days, online Pakistani retailer Fitin offered Arshad a modelling contract with them and have already posted photos of him on their website with the caption “Chai wala is no more chai wala. Now he is fashion wala.” Take a look at his new fashion transformation.

Meet the model!

Meet the model!

Arshad has been interviewed on many news outlets including a sit-down interview with the BBC where he revealed he was too poor to be educated and was one of 17 children. He had been working at the tea stall for three months when the photo was taken.

Isn’t it crazy how one random photo can change someone’s life around for the better? Ah the power of social media! Fingers crossed Arshad gets a great new career out of this and is able to help his family out.


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