Qandeel Baloch’s biopic: The moral crusaders are back

Saba Qamar is going to play Qandeel Baloch in a biopic that has recently been announced. The announcement of the film has once again brought back all those painful memories associated with Qandeel’s murder. All that male chauvinism, the hate for the lady, those heart-wrenching comments that we had seen from the self-proclaimed moral crusaders have returned in their entirety as the movie has been announced.

All those ‘why are they making a biopic for Qandeel Baloch, she’s no role model’; ‘She was murdered because she was corrupting the society’; ‘What else was the brother supposed to do?’ and ‘Tumhari behen aisa kerti tou?’ are back on the internet and it’s really saddening. To add to them all, now we have ‘Saba Qamar should also have the same fate as Qandeel’s if she is so willing to be like her’. The level of bigotry in our society is on display once again and the arguments are disturbing at so many levels that they need to be broken down in order to be responded one-by-one.

“Why are they making biopic for Qandeel Baloch? She’s no role model”

First of all, films are not always made on role models. Even if Qandeel Baloch isn’t a role model for these crusaders, it doesn’t mean that a biopic can’t be made on her life. We have movies on the lives of gangsters, killers and even murderous monarchs. At least Qandeel Baloch had never harmed anyone. She was doing what she wanted to on her own Facebook space. They were all free to ignore her but chose otherwise. They chose hypocrisy over piety; derived all the pleasure from it and then turned evangelists the next morning.

“She was corrupting the society”

No. She wasn’t corrupting the society. The society is corrupt. You eat dead chicken in Peshawar, drink poisoned liquor in Hyderabad, and buy donkey’s meat in Lahore. You search incest on porn websites and throw acid on women’s faces. And, yes, you still search for Qandeel Baloch’s videos on the internet. She wasn’t corrupting the society. The society is corrupt. Stop blaming your corruption on a deceased woman who isn’t here to even defend herself. To know what your society’s face really looks like, look at her brother’s face who used to feed on her money and then murdered her over his misplaced ‘honour’. That’s what this society is. Hypocrite!

“What else was the brother supposed to do?”

Well. He could have ignored what she was doing. He could have left her to her devices and led his own life. Better still, he could have owned her with everything she was and snubbed those urging him to murder her. Or, at least, he could have cut ties with her and stop feeding on her hard-earned money. At least he could’ve done that. No?

“Tumhari behen aisa kerti tou?”

When asked this same question, a friend of mine had said, “I don’t have a sale deed of my sister; she is free to do whatever she wants to without me approving of it”. And that’s the whole point. I’m not the owner of my sister, or of any other woman of the world. Had my sister asked for counseling, I’d have certainly given her advice. But if she didn’t, I wouldn’t murder her for choosing whatever path she chose. We’re not born owning our women as our property. It’s not you who decide!

So, all power to Saba Qamar. She is doing something great. And she deserves to be acknowledged for her bold initiative. I’m dying to see her on the big screen, playing the woman who had the guts to do what she wanted to, in this society of narrow-minded lunatics who don’t even know that films can be made on anything, anyone, even those who might not be role models for these conformists.

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