Weekly News Round-Up (18th – 24th September)
In this week’s news updates we find out about the Beelas, the revival of Sindhi cinema, Atif Aslam and Mahira Khan’s next project together and what Shahzad Roy & Shaniera Akram have been up to on Twitter. Read on to find out more.
Sindhi Short Film Receives Warm Welcome In Russia
This month, Sindhi short film – “A Train Crosses The Dessert” made the news after it was screened at the 17th Kazan International Muslim Film Festival, held in Kazan, Tatarstan, Russia. The film is written and directed by Rahul Aijaz, Produced by the Goethe-Institut Pakistan and Co-produced by the Media Department at IoBM and Rahul Aijaz. The film stars Nadir Hussain, Tariq Raja and Arshad Shaikh and tells the story of a terminally ill Farooq who begs his brother to fulfil his last request and euthanize him. This is the film’s eighth selection at an international film festival and this is the first Sindhi film ever to be screened at festivals worldwide! This is definitely a step in the right direction and will hopefully help revive regional Sindhi cinema, Kudos to the team!
Who Are The Beelas & Why Do They Need To Be Held Accountable?
Beelas are an organized syndicate in Pakistan with dedicated WhatsApp groups, formal group networks, and an open proud declaration that they are a group of men who terrorize and enact violence on khwajasiras, effeminate boys, and use gang rape as a method of enjoying themselves. They have their own names for the many other violent crimes that they do to khwajasira bodies (source: @unrelentlesslyyours). In just the last year, there have been 41 cases of violence against transgender persons in Karachi, alongside 4 murder cases and 1 missing person case. This is in addition to many other similar cases across the country (source: @gender.ia). In light of the fact that the majority of these cases still await legal reprieve and justice, as well as the fact that transgender people continue to be mistreated by citizens and law enforcement on a daily basis, there was a protest organised on 24th September at 4 PM outside the Karachi Press Club.
Atif Aslam & Mahira Khan Reunite in Ajnabi After 10 Years
Atif Aslam‘s new music video titled ‘Ajanbi’ will release on Saturday, 25th September and will star him alongside Mahira Khan after a decade! The last time we saw the duo together was in Shoaib Mansoor’s ‘Bol’ in 2011 and it’s no surprise that fans can’t wait to see them perform their on-screen magic together! From the sound bites released on Atif’s Instagram so far, the song sounds like a banger, but guess we’ll know for sure tomorrow…
Shahzad Roy Fulfils Promise & Makes An Interesting Discovery
Earlier in August Shahzad Roy shared a video of children from Hunza playing music with makeshift music instruments and was eager to locate their whereabouts so he could send them instruments. turns out his perseverance finally paid off and he finally got those instruments delivered to those children – who surprise, surprise are now adults! Turns out that the video shared on social media was at least ten years old and those children are all grown up now and still harbour a love for music.
Pakistan’s Bhabi, Shaniera Akram In The News For Facing Backlash
Earlier this month, Shaniera Akram tweeted about how she feels safer in Pakistan as compared to anywhere else in the world. This was followed by many Pakistanis criticising her for not acknowledging her privilege and supposedly disregarding the instances of violence many Pakistani women face on a day to day basis by making such blanket statements. However, disagreeing with someone’s opinion doesn’t make it okay to belittle them or call them a “rich gori“. It’s important to note that Shaniera has spent almost a decade in Pakistan and isn’t a stranger to its dark underbelly. She clapped back at trolls in her Insta stories and said, “There are times you may not agree with me, and may even not like me. but remember I am human, I will make plenty of mistakes. but my intentions are good and there is always a method to my madness. Just trust in me and know, even if I make you feel uncomfortable for whatever reason, I will always have your best interests at heart!”.