Raza Habib Raja
The fact that Pakistan has a dismal record with respect to gender is not a new thing. But it seems that now we are hell bent on achieving new lows. Marvi Sirmid, was attacked and abused on live TV by a Mullah. He started to obstruct the moment she tried to speak and used language which is shameful. We are pasting the link of the video so that all of you can see for yourself.
The Mullah did not even let her speak. She had not even said anything when he started to interrupt. He told her that he wont even let her speak. Then the verbal skirmish between them started culminating in his efforts to physically hit her.
What happened is shameful but the reaction of some of the Pakistanis on social media was even more shameful. We are presenting some screenshots of the kind of endorsement which treatment meted to Marvi Sirmid received.
In my opinion, some of the reaction is perhaps even worse than the act itself. It shows how deep rooted the problem is and how some men think that a liberal woman actually deserves it.
And this is the latest in a series of incidences. In the past few months, we have seen honor killings and those who indulged in such killings, have actually boasted and taken pride. The Council of Islamic Ideology actually recommended that wife beating should be allowed. Our “honorable” federal minister Khawaja Asif called a sitting female legislator as “Tractor Trolley” and refused to apologize! Ironically the party to which that female legislator belongs is also known for its own misogynist and sickening behavior. Trolls belonging to that party have abused Malala, Mariyam Nawaz, Benazir, Asifa and a number of female opponents. And yes they abused that female legislator and her daughter when for a short duration of time, she left that party!
As a nation, we are sick and yet in denial. We get angry over Shirmeen Chinoy for presenting a negative image of Pakistan. Negative image? She presented the real image. Those who think that Pakistan is just like any other country and it is in negative spotlight only because “traitors” like Shirmeen Chinoy are presenting it in negative light need to know some facts. In 2015, Pakistan ranked as second last in Global Gender Gap Index well below several countries with similar level of economic development. Guess what: Only Yemen was below us! And Yemen is a completely failed state!
Rather than calling those who point an obvious reality as “enemies” of Pakistan, maybe we need to take a good hard look at the way, half of our population is treated. May be we need to understand that fake national pride aimed at presenting a glorified and misplaced image of Pakistan in the international arena is not the answer. If all we need to perhaps introspect and understand that there is a problem with the way we treat women.
Dear Pakistanis, we have a national problem and calling liberals who point out towards that as fake liberals or being on anti Pakistan agenda is not going to solve it