Through thick and thin, through highs and lows, the only thing that works for us is the fact that everything comes to an end, but not for her. She literally follows the same redundant routine day and night for many years. Without complaining, she bears every pain even beyond an average human’s threshold. While we whine about early office hours and lack of sleep, she wakes up before everyone even on a Sunday. I can go out to break the monotony, but she always sticks around awaiting everyone’s attention and yet doesn’t complain if no one bothers to return her calls! Continue reading
From bed to the shower and then rushing towards the car, I didn’t get the time to put on my lipstick. The thought of not having it made me feel so incomplete as if I was missing an integral part of my personality.
Feeling irritated and under confident, I rushed towards the restroom right after the morning meeting was over. Took out the brightest lipstick, smudged it with a lip gloss, and here, I looked perfect. Continue reading
8 in the evening, my mom was in a rush when I got back home. I asked her “what’s the hurry?” She said it was her favorite play on ARY. I am usually not intrigued by her favorite plays, but this time I decided to sit next to her and watch this play called ‘Daagh’.
The story wasn’t something novel or ground-breaking rather it was a typical play. It depicted a young girl and her struggle after giving birth to a fourth girl. Her husband married another woman for a male child and couldn’t maintain the desired level of justice between his two wives.
But what provoked me to write this article were the intricate details and emotions portrayed in that play. It showed how, after deciding to live separately, that lady was teased, censured & criticized for doing things which were highly unnoticeable in another situation. How the realities & miseries of the monetary world unveiled themselves upon her. How she realized that it was a choice between her self-respect and the luxuries of her children.
When you’re with your husband and confined within the boundaries of your house, no one notices when you go out and when you don’t. No one cares whether your cousins visit you or your uncles. No one is bothered whether that was a stubborn child screaming or a woman beaten by her husband. But once, you’re either divorced or separated from your husband, all these small details become the story of your life.
On one hand you’re forced to go outside and earn which is already a trauma for a woman, who is used to living inside her comfort zones. On the other hand, it’s the people who don’t let you live. They always try to find the culpability within the woman herself. No matter how much modern we are, in our society the liability of a broken marriage rests with the woman, either because of her character or her bad luck.
I don’t know how many of you reading this can actually relate to the feelings of this lady and her children. But I have observed this in reality and I assure you, it’s not a good feeling. You see success stories of single moms abroad, but in Pakistan it’s very rare. Mostly these women are not educated & acclimatized to the professional world. And when they don’t have enough money to fulfill desires or even feed their children properly, they’re forced to reach a ‘humiliating compromise’ with their husband’s injustice.
I have seen the suffering and embarrassment; when a woman has to give up a lot of basic necessities because of her monetary constraints, how little kids wonder why their mom won’t buy them the chocolate chip cookies they loved before and what it’s like to sell everything you can for your child’s medicine!
But the question is ‘Whether this message actually makes an impact on the audience?’ I wonder what the target audience might be thinking? Who is the target audience? Is it those men who first marry a girl at a very young and tender age and then abandon her? Or those women who let others discard them out of their lives?
Let’s see what if the target audience is those women who are so gullible and immature that they fall into hasty marriages with no plans for future? These young girls; they probably sympathize with these women but never envision themselves in those characters. Why is that? Simply because at this age and with this naivety, how can you expect them to apply something as grim as this play on themselves?
Next target audience could be men themselves. For them, these plays can be an eye opener. They can probably understand or even experience the pain of a woman which would’ve been impossible otherwise.
` But the target audience which I foresee to be the most apposite for such plays is women with newborn babies. They are responsible for the brought up and the perceptual development of these nascent minds. It’s simple; either they’ll teach their kids to value other’s feelings and respect their existence or to mortify them. Either these women will discriminate between girls and boys or they’ll practically demonstrate equality. It’s upon these women to actually modify the existing mindsets through their brought up & the values they inculcate in their kids. These plays can be used to propagate awareness regarding education, early marriages and working women. I might be overestimating these plays, but many a times we forget that these plays depict the reality of many families out there.
To make sure it’s not yours or your child’s family, you need to learn, adapt and educate!
The death of ‘girl raped in the bus’ in Delhi has stirred the emotions of billions of people through national & international media. This incident has once again spurred the much forgotten role of women and their empowerment in the social system of the world.
This issue of rape, sexual assault & abuse is not only a stigma to India or United States of America; rather it’s a quandary which has crept in the social systems of every nation throughout the globe. The sexual assault expert at the Utah center for sexual victims says that behind a rape the sole motive isn’t sexual pleasure rather its an amalgamation of anger, frustration & aggression.
With the societal confinements lessening for females, we expect that the number of sexual harassment will also diminish gradually. But unfortunately, the numbers continue to rise at a higher pace in countries like America where liberalism abated chauvinism long before Pakistan.
What could be the reason for this horrendous but factual increase in sexual assaults? Experts agree that perhaps with awareness in developed countries, more people are prone to report this act of brutality which was a hidden malice before.
What’s unfortunate for countries like Pakistan here is, that this desecration still lurks in our society either more or at least equivalent to the developed countries. This tyrannical rule of men is difficult to treat or even identify as an issue in cultures like Pakistan & India. The woman of the house is considered an honorable ‘commodity’ which is to be kept within the confinement of the four walls.
Since Zia-ul-Haq’s rule the concept of Chaardewari(home) & chaadar was linked with Islamization. This further accentuated the fanatics who considered that a woman out of the Chaardewari was indulged in an unIslamic activity & ought to be reprimanded accordingly.
Pakistani society under the influential bureaucrats has exploited Islamization on many avenues of which one is the subjugation of females. We all know about the incident of the girl in Delhi because the police efficiently took notice of it.
But we all remained ignorant of the 12 year old Muqadas Kainat raped in Sahiwal on 25th August, 2012. The girl was brutally strangled to death while her father Rafiq Masih was attending to her mother at the hospital. The laxness showed by police in the investigation in this case went unnoticed for two reasons. The first is that she was a woman & this label in our society is enough to undermine her basic right of living. The second reason was that she was from a minority; her religion & beliefs adduced her as a vulnerable & inferior being whose murderers didn’t deserve any predicaments.
This case of Muqadas is not a one of its kind. 23rd December, 2012, a 14 year old Hindu girl was raped in socially primitive area of Chachro, by a political worker. The girl was atrociously abused & bruised. Her parents took her to the hospital where she wasn’t admitted for check up without a registered FIR. The police invariably refused to register an FIR as the Hindu woman was worth abhorrence anyways.
Asiyah Masih in Vihari was raped for eleven days by politically influential culprits until she was recovered on November 22nd,2012. The two perpetrators Mohammed Javed & Mumtaz forcibly converted her to Islam & defied all norms & values of humanity concurrently. Once again the cyclical violence of our society flaunted its vindictive attitude towards females & the criminals were neither arrested nor an FIR registered against them.
The abuse of women is increasing not only due to the appallingly silent police. But the major chunk of this violence is contributed by us! Our silence & societal treatment is a sign of our sub-conscious support of these spiteful acts. The silence is prolonged & justice eventually dismissed especially when the victim is from a minority religion or an ethnically different caste.
While, the whole globe has accepted women as an equivalent to men, the fanatics in Pakistan continue to despise any sort of freedom granted to women. No matter what liberal stances we put forth, we are still under the influence of Zia-ul-Haq’s Hadood ordinance. Our nurturance, our brought up & social environment still considers women as a subordinate to men. Their individuality, sexuality, passions & expressions are all bound to be under domineering rule of men.
The faulty beliefs upheld by the Pakistanis ought to be changed and modified according to the real principles of Islam. Our upbringing is faulty which assuages the desires of male ego in the name of religion while disregarding the basic rules of humanity & morality. Islam never taught us to treat females as an inferior half of the society. Women the source of humanity & perpetuators of our species, how can we defy their basic rights? How can we negate their literacy, education & dishonor their existence?
We need to stop & reinvent the patterns of thinking we are living & sharing with our coming generations as per the rules of our religion & humanity!
[49:13] O people, we created you from the same male and female, and rendered you distinct peoples and tribes, that you may recognize one another. The best among you in the sight of GOD is the most righteous. GOD is Omniscient, Cognizant.