Saturday, January 21, 2012

Media encouraging vigilantes

It seems Samaa TV takes the cake for being the most ridiculous and sick channel, even worse than GEO when it comes to monopolizing public sentiments about any controversial issues. The Pakistani electronic media often indulges in different tactics to have higher TRPs, for which it keeps stooping lower and lower.

The following is a clip from Maya Khan’s program on Samaa TV, Subha Sawerey, where a bunch of women from different walks of life visit public parks and chase 'dating' couples. They use their own personal moral sticks to measure the rightness and wrongness of such dating and harass dating couples. This attitude was wrong and presumptuous on so many levels, that one cannot even fully comprehend it. Foremost being the idea, that any man or woman hanging out together, early in the morning have to be on a date. They could not be friends hanging out together, they could not be sitting their for a discussion or to just enjoy the fresh air, they have to be 'dating'.

The clip starts with dehumanizing sentences like, “Kuch nazar aaya, koye nazar aaya?” (Did you see something or someone?) And some guy saying, “In jagaon par bohat kuch hai,” (There is a lot in these places) as if they are not talking about dating couples, rather objects who are not flesh and blood. As if that was not insulting enough, the women run in different directions saying, “Wo dekho, wahan aik hai,” (Look there’s one [couple]) It is not only disappointing but worrisome to see these women chasing young men and women who are already so oppressed in the society. Another worrisome aspect is the way they blame mostly the women for their behavior. Their comments and words reek of misogyny and hatred for women. It is one of the most perfect examples showcasing the generation whose minds were mutilated by the Zia regime.

One can be a liar, cheater, ‘rishwatkhor’, but as long as one wears a burka and keeps their pants above the ankles or at least condemns the liberals, they can wear the label of being the pious. Interestingly, the double standards of this moral brigade become very much apparent, when Maya Khan lies about the mic and camera being turned off while talking to one of the couples. It shows the double standards we have as a society. It was disgusting to watch her lie so blatantly; however, most people of the ‘ghairat’ brigade will not even notice that. They would only praise this stupid moral brigade.

This sort of behavior might end up prompting people to start taking matters in their own hands. Let’s not forget the incident of the Sialkot brothers, Salman Taseer, countless mob lynching incidents of Ahmedis and Shias all over Pakistan. Public vigilantes in Pakistan are becoming more and more of a problem. The Pakistani legislation is not as much to blame as the people themselves who resort to such moral policing and that too in public areas. Programs further encouraging the already prevalent riot mind set in the Pakistani society are dangerous and should be held responsible. Let us not forget that it was also Samaa TV’s Meher Bukhari who instigated hate against Governor Salman Taseer, resulting in his death at the hands of a fanatic Muslim.

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  1. The way these women behaved was disgraceful and it was not just the host.the 'students' gleefully high fiving each other on capturing dating couples was a sickening sight.All the self righteous women in this clip sitting in judgement on the girls in the park for their percieved crimes should take a long hard look at themselves.the way all of them they were chasing after the couples reminded me of a pack of hyenas chasing after an injured deer.the absolute joy these women took in scaring off the couples says a lot about their mentality.
    maybe next time this show could chase down paedophiles or maulvis who perform nikah for underage girls.Maybe they could confront the maulvis who rape children in madrassas who're confident in the assurance that no tv crew is going to shove cameras and mikes in their faces.picking on the vulnerable is the easiest thing to do,no heroics in that.This show was tabloid trash,not fit for a news channel.

    1. This show was disgusting. I am really disappointed. But I guess this is what Samaa TV is.