Dear PML-N supporters, dragging Tyrian White in your battle with PTI reeks of indecency and dirty tactics

Published: August 7, 2017

Twenty years ago, the battle between the two parties featured little Tyrian White.

When Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was formed in 1996, I quickly became a member. Back then, I was much like the PTI supporters of today – impressionable, emotional and self-righteous. My devotion to Imran Khan was also like that of contemporary PTI supporters – blind, cultish and eulogising.

Like millions of PTI supporters, I was also unable to see anything wrong with Imran and would break into passionate debates with anyone who was critical of him. I used to think that only jahils (illiterates) voted for the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). Thank God, those days are over, and today I vehemently oppose this ideologically reactionary party and its self-obsessed leader.

Within a few months of its formation, PTI was facing its first electoral challenge of the 1997 elections. Imran campaigned aggressively and as a foot soldier, I was also going door to door, pleading people to vote for the great Imran. During his campaign, Imran accused Benazir Bhutto, Nawaz Sharif and Asif Ali Zardari of being the greatest thieves, who were in reality conniving with each other to loot our country. His political maturity and rhetoric has remained frozen in time as he sounds exactly the same even today.

Back then, I thought that since people were sick of ‘corrupt’ politicians therefore my hero Imran – who was ‘honest’, had won the 1992 World Cup and then built Shaukat Khanum hospital – could sweep the elections. My optimism was also quite similar to the optimism of contemporary PTI supporters prior to the 2013 elections.

As the election campaign was reaching its crescendo, PML-N started to raise the issue of Sita White. This issue had been in news before as well. It is alleged that Imran had an affair with Sita and she ended up having a child, Tyrian White. However, Imran has not acknowledged her as his daughter till today.

I remember the first time it had made news in the year 1995, even before the formation of PTI. However, with the passage of time, it faded from the headlines. It was PML-N which brought the issue back into the spotlight through vicious means. In response, Imran said that PML-N had made up this story and was bribing Sita. Hearing this, Sita challenged Imran to take a paternity test which he declined.

That negative campaign had a huge impact. Although realistically, Imran had not been in any position to win the elections, but in the absence of this negative publicity, he would win more votes. Many women of my own extended family had flatly refused to vote for him (despite my pleas) after the Sita issue had taken centre stage.

I remember hating PML-N back then. In my opinion, it was Imran’s personal life and they did not have any right to make it an electoral issue. Later, after the Los Angeles Court decided in favour of Sita, she issued the following statement:

“Power, money and high office should always be less important than a child’s emotional and financial well-being. It’s not cricket for a father to deny his child in order to gain political office. And we’re happy that this case became an issue in his campaign to become prime minister and we think that the Pakistani people sent him an important message when they refused to elect him the prime minister of Pakistan while the issue of paternity remained unresolved.”

Today, this statement resonates with me much more than it did back then. Sita was making a valid point which I could not understand back then due to my youth and hero worship of Imran.

However, while her statement may have ended up resonating with me, PML-N’s dirty and third class tactics have never done so. I still think it was cheap to politicise Imran’s personal life for petty gains. To make matters worse, PML-N thrusted little Tyrian in the national spotlight in a negative manner, a position that she still finds herself in.

Twenty years ago, the battle between the two parties featured little Tyrian. Now in 2017, a grown-up Tyrian finds herself in the same place all over again. Every time a feud between PML-N and PTI heats up, Tyrian is brought into the political discourse in a condescending manner. Moreover, PML-N trolls, who though lesser in number but are as crude and abusive as PTI trolls, also started harassing Tyrian online.

After the Supreme Court’s (SC) judgement against Nawaz followed by Ayesha Gulalai’s allegations, some PML-N supporters have been targeting Tyrian on Twitter. The tweets became even more offensive after Imran made claims that Sita had taken money from PML-N in 1996 to malign him.

This was a highly irresponsible statement from Imran and frankly, he should not have said this. However, the subsequent online response targeting Tyrian was totally unfair and reeked of petty and third-class mentality. While some were directly tweeting to Tyrian, some were just tagging her in their own online battles with PTI trolls. Below are the screenshots of several disgusting tweets by PML-N supporters:

In the face of this filthy and disgusting behaviour, young Tyrian maintained her poise and gave one or two replies which showed these trolls their true faces.

No matter how much I politically disagree with Imran today, dragging Tyrian into this political battle is plain wrong and indecent. By targeting a 25-year-old innocent girl in this ugly fight, some of us are merely shaming Pakistan internationally and showing that we are incapable of even basic human decency. It’s time that we learn some dignity and shame.

We are sorry, Tyrian!

 

raza.habib

Raza Habib Raja

The author is a recent Cornell graduate and currently pursuing his PhD in political science at Maxwell School, Syracuse University. He has also worked for a leading development finance institution in Pakistan. He is a freelance journalist whose works have been published at Huffington Post, Dawn (Pakistan), Express Tribune (Pakistan) and Pak Tea House. He tweets @razaraja (twitter.com/razaraja?lang=en)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Ali

    So, on one hand you are saying that Tyrion issue should not be raised. While on the other, you are highlighting this old propaganda by posting this article. #DoubleStandardsRecommend

  • Uzair Abbas

    What is funny is, that is not her real account. Her tweets would be made private, just like her instagram is. Making a blog on fake id, really?Recommend

  • M. S. Chaudhry

    Had she been connected with any Prince Sharif, the decent, modest, polite, honest, kind, upright, virtuous, upright and well behaved PTI trolls would have never mentioned her, not in their dreams. Recently we have witnesses how honorably they treat women when their sister Ayesha Gulalai said something about Khan. PML(N) trolls should learn from them how to talk about women….Recommend

  • DARPA

    Somebody is on PML-N payroll..Recommend

  • Ghazi Gul

    A writer who manipulates and rewrites posted comments to suit himself, eh RHR.Recommend

  • RHR

    I really like your name!Recommend

  • ak

    absolutely…Recommend

  • Farhan

    PTI followers supported using article 62/63 to disqualify the PM because he was not “Sadiq/Ameen” as per irregularities in his finances. However, the same law in it’s definition would prohibit Imran from being PM due to his past indiscretions.

    Law is the law children. We cannot make it lenient as for our desired favourites.Recommend

  • Mr. Ok

    Again, read about reverse psychology. You have tried reverse psychology, might be unintentionally but, to us, it feels like a deliberate attempt.
    Because, we know each other, i think :PRecommend

  • Mr. Ok

    read reverse psychology, if that was unintentionalRecommend

  • Duniya Hasan

    Didn’t know imran khan has a daughter. What is he waiting for before accepting her openly as his daughter?Recommend

  • Striver

    The state of democracy in a country depends on the mindset of those who proclaim to be its practitioners. No other country has such a low level of democracy than in PK.Recommend

  • Shakir Lakhani

    If he openly accepts her as his daughter (he was never married to her mother), he automatically becomes ineligible to become the prime minister of Pakistan (according to the same law which disqualified Nawaz Sharif last month). Besides that, he will lose a lot of his followers, who will ask why they should vote for such a man.Recommend

  • raees

    IK committed a sin and he is at large. To discuss this issue is dirty game. wowRecommend

  • Hasan

    What has Pakistani politics come to. Sad.Recommend

  • Ali Kazmi

    Hmmph as a liberal Pakistani myself, I have no idea who to vote for °~°°_°, any recommendations?Recommend

  • RHR

    PTI supporter?Recommend

  • RHR

    I did not try any reverse psychology. Recommend

  • rex minor

    RHR should recognise that IK has a bag of worms from his previous life and is not a suitable candidate for a public office. he is adequately sponsored by western lobbyists. given the opportunity he will prove to be the worst of all previous poltical leaders of the great pakistan with majority lletrat population. You should btter promote avareness through education.

    rex minorRecommend

  • Ahmar

    Tyrian has lived with Imran and Jemima. Her pictures with siblings/step mom are all over the place.

    Just because Imran did not attend court proceedings does not mean he’s not the father.Recommend

  • LG

    Agreeing to RHR! He didn’t used any reverse psychology! Stating facts that may hurt party followers but he is fairly bringing to attention of public how they (1) either Imran with his recent face saving statement of bringing a departed soul (who is also mother of a 25 year old human being who never had fairness or protection all through her life just because she was forced to be born for moment pleasure rather than being responsible for her birth) in limelight to off track public mind or (2) PMLN workers sending heart breaking tweets to the same girl who had been deprived of her right to live decently in society! Well said RHR!!Recommend

  • K k

    Nobody is to be blamed for the embarrasing situation experiencing by tyrian other than imran naizi who not only betrayed sita but refused to own his own daughter. I have all the sympàthies with tyrian. He is the biggest cheater. HorribleRecommend

  • Ghazi Gul

    What is your point?Recommend

  • RHR

    I am teary eyed after reading this!Recommend

  • S.

    Both PML-N and PTI supporters could go to any lengths to hurt each other. Sadly, there are many who get caught in their crossfire.Recommend

  • Patwari

    Say hi to your patron Maryam Sharif, ooops! That is Maryam Safdar,
    the one who owns the London apartments. The same one who will
    have references filed against her and her abba by NAB.
    Nice try. But as usual, you failed in your pathetic attempt to portray yourself as neutral. Problem is you “ain’t neutral”.
    Thou dost protest too much.
    You are a ‘nooner’ in triplicate. The more you deny the more it shows.
    See after your two million articles, praising God’s gift to Pakland,
    also known as the ‘Man With A Face Only A Mother Can Love’. Or
    MWAFOAMCL or Raja of Raiwind or Two Palaces In Saudia Sharif or
    Dubai Iqama Sharif, or I Was Working Two Jobs Sharif, or Li’l Bit Sharif’s Older Brother, or Ivanka Sharif’s Abba… you will be forever known as a Nawazite.
    By the way Maryam moved her office from the PM House in Islamabad
    to Gawal Mandi, Lahore. Above Gullu Butt’s Kebab House. Be aware.Recommend

  • Patwari

    Surely you mean crocodile tears.Recommend

  • Patwari

    A sitting PM? Whose has a corruption records going back
    30 years. [a conservative estimate]. Now has almost $4 billion USD.
    A sitting PM who would not allow a full fledge foreign minister, who could attend forums, nations, all over the world and defend Pakland and present a positive image. This man single handedly destroyed Pakistan’s image worldwide.
    A sitting PM who wanted to negotiate with terrorists/extremists
    who have, to date, killed 73,000 men women children and soldiers.
    A sitting PM who made backroom deals with terrorists to spare his
    home province of Punjab, the rest of the country does not count.
    Hindustan has a vicious toxic campaign to malign and discredit
    Land of the Pure. While Paks have no one out there to defend it.
    Except Gullu Butt’s sister known as Maleha Lodhi in the United Nations.
    By the way, what was Nawaz doing as Chief Executive of a company
    in Dubai while he was Prime Minister? With a Dubai Iqama to boot.
    Working two jobs? To support his poor family?
    The reason he did not collect a salary was because he owned the
    shell company. His son was just a front. Money laundering.
    A siiting PM who lied to the nation , National Assembly, the JIT,
    and the Supreme Court. Who could not proof prove how he purchased properties in London. Fake documents, letters…..
    Take a good long look in the mirror. You will see Nawaz staring back.Recommend

  • RHR

    Tears of sympathy 😄Recommend

  • RHR

    Oh typical self righteous and know all behavior is even more fully at display. And you think that you are better or more intelligent! Typical supporter of that reactionary Taliban Khan
    Self righteous!Recommend

  • RHR

    Instead of telling him to take a look in the mirrorr, take a good look at yourself. Recommend

  • RHR

    Pity on you! Typical PTI commentator accusing anyone who differs in opinion as paid
    Recommend

  • Patwari

    When you look in the mirror,…you notice that pointed head?Recommend

  • Abbas Khan

    Yup educated turned into sour critics because of mehrbani of people like u who do not leave any chance to criticize IK’s personal like. U want some; come get some.
    Recommend

  • RHR

    Wow what a “witty’ and brave answer ” U want some; come get some.”
    Typical PTI self righteous behaviorRecommend

  • RHR

    Yawn. PTI walas jokes are also as lame as their leader.Recommend

  • Aamna Hassan Fasihi

    Tyrian has never lived with IK. As for Jemima’s pictures with Tyrian, the first picture surfaced right after IK and Reham’s marriage. Jussayin!Recommend

  • Ali Kazmi

    RHR didn’t use reverse psychology but you most certainly did.
    “PMLN workers sending heart breaking tweets to the same girl who had been deprived of her right to live decently in society!”
    Uh in case you aren’t aware of this, in the West, most people don’t give two hoots about whether someone’s parents were married or not when they were conceived or if someone actually knew their dad or not. I’m certain Tyrion has lived a decent enough life thus far and the fact that her father’s identity is not exactly confirmed has never led to any social problems for her.Recommend