Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh is an actress, lawyer, and politician of Pakistani descent in the Scottish National Party. She is the founder and chair of the Scottish Asian Women's Association.
Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh was born in Chelsea in 1970, and raised in Edinburgh. Her mother is half-Welsh and half-Czech, and her father was born in India, then migrated to Pakistan and finally to the United Kingdom. She is a practising Muslim and has three children. She received an OBE in the 2014 New Year Honours. She is a partner at the Glasgow law firm Hamilton Burns, specialising in commercial conveyancing and private client work, often with a family law or immigration element.
Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh was active in the Scottish Conservative Party from the age of 10 and a member from 16. She was chairperson of Edinburgh Central Young Conservatives and deputy spokeswoman for the party on women and family issues and equal opportunities. She stood as the party's candidate in Glasgow Govan in the 1999 Scottish Parliament election, where she came in third place with 2,343 votes (8.88%).
During the election, she was paraded as the bright new face of Scottish Conservatism. She ran her campaign on family life, law and order, health and education, and spoke against the SNP pledge to increase taxes. She also attacked Alex Salmond's criticism of Nato's involvement in the Kosovo War, saying his description of the intervention as "unpardonable folly" was "hopelessly naive" and he should hang his "head in shame". She said that Salmond's comments exposed "the stark truth" about him, that "he is hopelessly out of his depth in the arena of real politics, national, and international".
In 2000, she resigned from the Conservatives in response to William Hague's "right wing" pronouncements on asylum seekers. She declared that she would join the Scottish National Party, and was welcomed as a 'defector'. Salmond said he was "glad she has joined the party". It later emerged that she had held membership of the Labour Party for two years in the mid-1990s, forcing her to deny accusations of opportunism.
Clive Schmulian, Ahmed-Sheikh's election agent for the Scottish Parliament election, said after her defection: "She was desperate for a high profile and has a huge ego but she was very politically naive. She has very Right-wing views and will never fit in with the SNP. If anything she felt that William Hague was taking the party too far to the Left and held strong views on homosexuality, education vouchers and further privatisation in Scotland."
In July 2012, she joined the Advisory Board of Yes Scotland, the cross-party campaign for Scottish independence ahead of the upcoming referendum.
In May 2014 she was the third candidate on the SNP's list for the European Parliament election, where the SNP hoped to win three seats.
Source: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia