There’s more to life — than Maya Khan

Published: February 4, 2012

KARACHI: I would say that your newspaper has gone overboard in its coverage of Maya Khan and her antics on television.

I, for one, am sick and tired of reading about her and how wrong she was to infringe upon peoples’ rights to privacy. She lied, she was wrong. You know it, we know it; she admitted it, the channel admitted it. She apologised, albeit halfheartedly. The time has come when we must put it past us, and move on. There’s more to an average Pakistani’s life than to rant about Maya Khan, and more interesting things, too. There are people dying around us, left, right and centre. Fuel prices are skyrocketing, making like more and more unaffordable for ordinary Pakistanis — why not do a detailed report on that? The poor are getting poorer and the rich richer — a ‘naan’ costs six rupees, and we are giving so much important to a has-been television talk-show host.

How is it that we don’t focus on the more important things going on around us? People were prescribed contaminated medicines by a government-run hospital in Lahore and over a hundred died! Of course there are positives as well. A landmark women’s bill is on its way to being enacted into law, after the Senate recently passed it. Pakistan has received its first Oscar nomination, through a remarkable woman Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, in the ‘Best documentary’ category. A new train, the Business Express, has started operating between Lahore and Karachi, and hopes to rejuvenate the moribund rail system in the country.

That’s Pakistan for you; just when you think there’s no more hope left, it will sweep you right off of your feet with a new ray of hope. Then there are the booming Facebook-based businesses, ranging from people making and selling cakes and confectionery to photographs — and doing well for themselves. An art therapy programme was launched last year, called ‘Artpreneurs for Change’, and it focuses on providing therapy to children with special needs, through art. Again, there’s been little or no coverage of this in the media.

Please stop writing about Maya Khan. We’ll all forget about it just like we forgot about Veena Malik, Reema’s wedding, Shahbaz Taseer’s abduction, Sarfaraz Shah’s murder, Saleem Shahzad’s mysterious death, and so on.

I’m a Pakistani who is sick of opening websites of the print media, only to find them laden with articles about people like Maya Khan.

Tooba Akhtar

University of Karachi

Published in The Express Tribune, February 5th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (25)

  • hashim Ali khan
    Feb 4, 2012 - 9:55PM

    Maya Khan must be made an example for other so other may never do what she did. Maya Khan the hypocrites


  • Parvez
    Feb 4, 2012 - 10:57PM

    You have a point.
    The extended hype about the Maya Khan episode is possibly because very, very seldom do we see swift accountability taking place in the public domain and this if anything, was just that.


  • Omer Kaleem
    Feb 5, 2012 - 3:42AM

    I totally agree with your argument. But Maya Khan is part of our media that is television which has a far big audience then print media. All these news channels need to be aware of their responsibility rather social responsibility as they have great power and influence over the masses even the uneducated ones.So not only print media or forums like Facebook just need to stop talking about negative, unimportant, useless issues; but our television channels their anchors have to act responsible and instead of reporting negative and demotivating news about Pakistan (which is not even from a reliable source even at times and turns out to be false later) they should highlight the positive things happening around as mentioned by you above. Like how is “birth of a child of ashwariya and abishek” a breaking news?

    They are just demotivating, demoralizing and creating fears in peoples’ minds, making them visualize a totally dark future which is not even real, and indulge them in totally useless and unproductive things.


  • qureshi
    Feb 5, 2012 - 9:08AM

    after this incedent i did not hear anything from her side. except once on tv with two ladies anchors and two males. where is she now and what she is planing?Recommend

  • Feb 5, 2012 - 10:40AM

    It’s fashion in our society to become champion without going through the whole process; so is Maya Khan, a self made Khudai Khidmatdar along with her phony group. Who gave them the right to behave like a cur rapt police persons to harass innocent dating young couples!!

    To teach her to stay within her parameter next time, she need to be black listed from all Pakistani TV Channels for life times, This would be an example for others to behave and to work within their respective limits……….


  • AKB
    Feb 5, 2012 - 4:18PM

    What is ‘positive’ in Pakistan to report??? Obscenity in public places such as parks is condemnable and Maya did her job well in exposing the growing evil in our society! Previously, such obscenity was a culpable offense and it is still so in the Criminal Procedure Code. If someone has to visit parks he or she must observe decency in their behavior and
    refrain from display of blow-jobbing in public!! Public parks have become a tryst for school and college girls and boys and stuff from the mediocre class. You will not find any ”civilized’ citizen there as it is hard for to attend such parks alongwith their families for reasons of bad influence on their children cast by the vulgar acts done by scoundrels there .
    i am with Maya on this and condemn all those who victimized her for her noble action against licentious and lascivious people camping at public parks. It goes without saying that DHA had to ban men from wearing shorts in public parks. If that is objectionable, why not the obnoxiousness witnessed at public parks?


  • TN, Advocate
    Feb 5, 2012 - 4:23PM

    100% correct!
    There are plenty of other issues that have to be highlighted.
    I guess Maya went overboard and in our Muslim country there is no excuse of young couples going around dating.


  • M.S. Qureshi
    Feb 5, 2012 - 6:45PM

    It is intention behind an action that counts. We all know that, Maya had taken an initiative to expose something considered highly despicable in normal life of the overwhelming majority of our people. Her intention of bringing a wrong to the knowledge of concerned was definitely commendable being intended for the benefit of general Pakistani society. But, the course she adopted was incorrect that killed the whole initiative, apart from it back-firing harshly her own self.


  • AT
    Feb 6, 2012 - 12:43AM

    I assume you don’t live in Pakistan. If you do, please leave. We don’t need people like you here. You have the choice to go live elsewhere, AVAIL IT.


  • Raheel Khan
    Feb 6, 2012 - 7:29AM

    She has been doing everything through her life for her career of fame and to get her ratings up, she forgot what she has done all lifelong,but people remember. People like her who do not understand their limits should be made an example. Samaa Tv should be appreciated for firing her, I am sure they realize that its people watching TV that bring them business not people like Maya Khan. Some other morning show host need to be told that there is a thing called Pakistani culture which has nothing to do with their stupid imitation of western shows, they are promoting vulgarity and cheapness to a new level.


  • Arif
    Feb 6, 2012 - 9:33AM

    Accept the reality showed by Maya Khan. We all hv dual personality. I’m sorry it is harsh but it is true – Public Place cannot be change into Dating Place.


  • Waseem
    Feb 6, 2012 - 11:18AM

    I dont even know that why this news was even an issue from the begining, I guess this is something within us that we make the smallest matter to the biggest…..It was so small that it shouldnt be even in the news to begin with.


  • Dab Shah
    Feb 6, 2012 - 12:29PM

    @AT it would be best if you leave. we all want to roam in places-where we can go with our family without feeling embarrassed when we see couples intermingling. Please AT go where you can see this and leave us alone.


  • Muhammad Mubeen
    Feb 6, 2012 - 1:05PM

    I am always with Maya Khan because she is right truth is truth never be wrong our culture and most important is Islam not giving a permission. Maya the great.emphasized text


  • Farida
    Feb 6, 2012 - 9:20PM

    Its a true fact which was presented by Maya Khan.Our parks have been taken so called by lovebirds, hidding behind bushes of trees involved in some undecent behavior.These parks r public places must be left to enjoyed by each and every member of the society.Family feel uncomfortable walking and taking their kids through these parks…please leave our parks for the healthy outcome of the society..let our kids enjoy healthy air and surrounding than seeing vulgur bollywood movie seens …Maya well done ..keep up the good work…and let people realize the idea behind this chappa


  • Farida
    Feb 6, 2012 - 9:27PM

    I agree Dab Shah its time for u to leave who kind of lack in moral values….Maya did a great job.Its becoming a biggest problem of our society PAKS TURNING TO DATING advise to all is stop watching those bollywood movies and get back to real life.Be a responsible citizen and provide healthy surroundings.


  • anonymus
    Feb 6, 2012 - 9:28PM

    maya should be prosecuted and put in jail so other media man learn lesson


  • Uza Syed
    Feb 6, 2012 - 10:41PM

    @Farida: Parks are better full of “lovebirds” than hate mongers or the thugs and the muggers and gun touting traders of terror or camera carrying vigillants


  • Waseem
    Feb 6, 2012 - 11:48PM

    @Uza Syed:

    If anybody wanted so much Privacy then they shouldnt be going to the parks… stay in a area where there is a privacy….Such as their homes or kitchen where ever they call it private…..I dont know why this small thing has become such a big issue….There are other topics in this world….Global economy is tanking, Crime rate in this country keep going up…Everyone just stuck with this one crappy subject which has absolutely no meaning….Everyone please everyone Do some creative work or have some creative arguments which has something to talk about.


  • aliha
    Feb 7, 2012 - 12:17AM

    Actually so called Muslims (Who launch a campaign against Her Show) Forget their destiny, religious Education, Islamic Society Norms & Islamic Culture,

    I have a question to Those people who against her that If his/her Sister or daughter hang out with unkown or known guy without information so will they accepted this action or not……..


  • leila rage
    Feb 7, 2012 - 5:37AM

    @aliha: Its not about “accepting this action”. Its about people’s basic right to privacy and dignity. If your sister was doing that, would you rather deal with the issue within the family and explain to her in a civilised way, OR would you like to see her activities broadcast on national television by people like maya khan, and have psychos after her, insisting on humiliating her with public flogging?

    Even if you may not agree with others dating, it doesnt become YOUR business. Its their problem.

    Why are all pakistanis obsessed with interfering in everyone elses’ lives and making a mess????


  • Umar Khan
    Feb 7, 2012 - 6:29AM

    I disagree. Whereas I can understand the wider point you are trying to make, but who gets to decide who wants to go with which cause? To you, there may be other causes more worthy of attention but to others, perhaps this cause is more important. Live and let live. Let those who are offended by Maya Khan express themselves. Its Maya khan who has committed the wrong, not those who were offended!


  • Feb 7, 2012 - 5:10PM

    I agree with Ms. Tooba that our media usually gives more than deserved coverage to certain issues.

    I believe its high time that media should prioritize the issues according the national interest and importance and give coverage accordingly.Recommend

  • Uza Syed
    Feb 7, 2012 - 5:31PM

    @Waseem: Sir, I guess you’ve missed the whole point here. Yes, as far as that stupid show by that woman is concerned, perhaps it should be considered as you said “small thing”. In my view, here the issue is greater than this. You are talking about an attempt to subjugate people through harrasment in the name of decency, morality, religion and whatever. Resisting this in such a wonderfully organized and vehement manner has sent a loud and clear message to all such forces with whatever designs. And the message is —–don’t even try —— we the citizens do not wish to be controlled and will not allow interference in our lives under any pretense. I see this new development, a good development and a welcome one—– a creative activity, too. We’ve have created a new sense of sovereignty of an individual and her/his independance and freedom to live a life that should be his/her prerogative.


  • Nobody
    Mar 16, 2012 - 9:46AM

    Why always someone’s sister or daughter? Why not hold brothers and sons equally responsible? No wonder Pakistan is what it is: a country that hates women. Please do us a favor and plant yourself in a nice cave somewhere and take your misogyny with you, thank you kindly.


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