Pakistani social media users are ‘aghast’ at a video purporting to show an unidentified female “posing” with a bouquet, wearing what appears to be a revealing outfit, on a balcony near Lahore’s Jasmine Mall.
A passerby, most likely a male who got more excited than shocked at the female’s clothes (or lack thereof), started filming her while she was standing next to an unidentified male, wearing a white t-shirt, on a balcony.
The passerby captured a number of video clips in which the female is seen wearing a white-colored two-piece swimsuit while holding a large bouquet of red flowers which more than obscures any “vulgarity“, albeit not for the one-track perverse minds that unfortunately appear ubiquitous across Pakistan.
It appears that the female was posing for a photographer taking pictures from a distance, or via a drone device.
The video has created a lot of buzz among the virtue-signaling conservative WhatsApp groups and has gone viral on social media. Netizens are questioning what is going on, or condemning the “vulgar” display of female flesh, but it is obvious that most are reveling in the entertainment and fully enjoying whatever “vulgar” element they are most fixated on.
Some social media users defended the woman, as the video made by the passerby has been posted on the internet without her consent.
Hints are being made regarding legal action on both these aspects; the violation of the female’s privacy, as well as strict punishment for ‘public nudity’ under Pakistan’s ultraconservative Islamic laws.
The episode is yet another instance of the misguided priorities of the Pakistani nation
The country plunged into darkness for most of the day on Monday, as analysts are now furiously speculating how soon the economy will default and go the way of Sri Lanka. The overall social decay and political anarchy is causing lawlessness and an exodus of capital and intellectual power.
Unemployment and inflation is being driven by the greed of elite hoarders, middlemen and short sellers, and cannot be fixed due to the mismanagement and negligence of the government and its regulatory agencies. And Pakistan has made it nearly impossible for its women to play the role than any modern society – whether thriving or in crisis – requires of its female population in this day and age.
Pakistan continues to become more and more unsafe for women, children, non-Muslims, tourists, Westerners, journalists, dissidents, activists, and any other minority group that has been – or can be – marginalised and disenfranchised by the system that runs the country.
But instead of coming up with ways to deal with the myriad crises that Pakistan is now facing – and has been facing for some time – the masses remain fixated on the wrong issues, with the wrong perspectives. The desecration of the Holy Quran in Sweden is again riling up the religious right and their hordes of adherents, while a majority of poor Pakistanis – including millions of children – live as refugees awaiting support towards rehabilitation from last year’s catastrophic floods.
Gender-based violence (GBV) and women’s rights also continue to be contentious issues in Pakistan. Having constantly diminished the role of women across all dimensions of society, the excessively male-dominated structures of Pakistan are actively invalidating – and at times trivialising – legitimate issues regarding constitutional and Islamic rights of Pakistani women. Some even equate it with an “international conspiracy” against Islam in Pakistan.
While Pakistani society blames female victims of GBV, and questions whether women who were brutally murdered by their partner were in a legitimate relationship or not, another non-issue in terms of a woman’s private act in her own domicile has become the focus of public attention.
The only reason why this was recorded by some random person and posted to the internet is because the female was not completely observant of the strict ‘veiling’ codes, known as chaadar aur chaar diwari, that prevail across a majority of our homes.
Today, they are much less a reflection of traditional Pakistani morals, and more a defense mechanism against the prying eyes of irrelevant people. In both formats, these social constructs of guilt and shame are used to control the actions and choices of Pakistani women.