Sunday, August 30, 2015

As a Pakistani, I support Faisal Qureshi

I came across Faisal Qureshi’s video in which he responds to callous and ill-informed comments by Saif Ali Khan, an Indian actor. Qureshi also addresses certain dialogues from the actor’s recently released movie, Phantom. I saw the video, read several comments on it, and a couple of articles criticising Qureshi for his approach and attitude in the video.

I haven’t seen Phantom and so I chose not to comment. But when I saw the reaction to Qureshi’s video and this one particular article published by a national newspaper, I was compelled to respond.

I am a patriot at heart and I love my country and my fellow patriots. For many years, I have read and seen the hate spewing anti-Pakistan propaganda in the Indian media and – thanks to ‘Modi sarkar’ – the Indian government. I will not go into the pointless debate of who is right or wrong, but what essentially made me respond was the fact that our own countrymen expect us to take all that filth and venom with a smile on our face.

As I say in the video, I don’t think Qureshi was addressing peace-loving Indians, but only the jingoists therein. For me, the video wasn’t just about an actor or his movie, but a reply to all the rubbish that has been thrown our way over the years.

Qureshi’s video, regardless of its large audience, was his own personal opinion and sentiments. It was not an official statement, neither was it the stance of an on-air anchor. It was the statement of one Pakistani who happened to be offended by the actor’s statement of ‘losing faith’ in a country for not screening his movie and the portrayal of our beloved nation. The few who chose to bash Qureshi for it needed to be responded to, and that is what I did, by expressing my own personal opinion.

from The Express Tribune Blog

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