Ramazan with Veena Malik: Lord forgive us all

Published: July 18, 2012
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A heavy voice, amid fire raging on the screen (illustrating hell fire) alerts us that it’s that time of the year when we all have to seek forgiveness from God– and just when I was about to recite Astaghfar in my heart, Veena Malik appeared and disrupted my connection with the Divine.

I shook my head in disbelief and continued to watch Veena Malik address me in a cobalt-blue kameez shalwar.

“Main hoon Veena Malik, is Ramazan main keroongi aapke saath … apne aur aapke gunaaho’n ka astaghfar.”

(I am Veena Malik, and this Ramazan I, along with you, will be seeking forgiveness for the sins you and I have committed).

This was the promotional video of the upcoming Ramazan transmission on Hero TV, owned by Express Media Group.

As the video ended, the images of Veena Malik I had recently witnessed sprung to my mind. Wait a second; is this the same Veena who was seen parading in skimpy clothes in some Bollywood item number twirling and shaking her rear with multiple men surrounding her?

I chuckled in the newsroom because I could not absorb the radical transition of the scantily-dressed Veena to the shareef-pretending, dupatta-adorned, glycerine-teary-eyed Veena.

Peals of laughter escaped me because I could not digest the fact that Veena could host a Ramazan transmission on national TV.

Veena, who is otherwise known in the news for her boldness and everyday controversies, which she never gets tired of, is now going to ask God to spare us all from his wrath during the Holy month of Ramazan.

Imagine!

After learning about her Bigg Boss brouhaha and later how the limelight had struck her for all the wrong reasons in the neighbouring country we love to hate so much, we all, in a way, disowned Veena.

We called her names – beghayrat, behaya, besharam (dishonourable, immodest and shameless). We accused her of bringing shame to the country and of ripping Pakistan’s ghayrat (respect) to shreds with her frequent “vulgar” stunts.

Then came a day when she was summoned to confront the masses in the court of the public– the television. The entire country sat in front of their television screens, glued to their seats to watch Veena explain why she had committed such ‘shameless acts’ and brought disgrace and infamy to the country’s name.

Veena, dressed in a black silk evening gown, gave details of why and how she had ‘humiliated the country on a foreign channel’ in an interview with Kamran Shahid. The interview was aired on Express News in 2011 and instantaneously went viral on the social media.

Why is that?

The answer is simple. Veena, contrary to the mass expectation, had refused to apologise over her ‘shameless acts’ and was blatantly unapologetic. Combating against a mufti sahib (religious scholar), Veena explained that all she did was part of the tasks given to the residents in the house of Bigg Boss.

Mufti sahib, while complimenting Veena on the “husn o jamal” (beauty and charm) God blessed her with, hurled fiery allegations at her. The headstrong Veena braved it all out and explained how she had never worn a “two piece” and had “only worn shorts” during the reality TV show’s shoot.

Denying all his allegations, Veena defended herself by saying that she ‘does not have a heavy conscience’ because she had not done something cruder that what has already been done in the Pakistani media before.

In turn, Veena objected and asked the scholar,

Mufti sahib yeh kya baat hui?

If Veena really was that bold and unapologetic in her encounter with fellow Pakistanis, then my question is– what is the point in coming on a show that is solely meant for repentance and seeking pardon?

I, for once, have to say this:

“Veena, I don’t need you to pray for me. I can pray for myself”.

In Islam, there is a belief that a worshipper becomes the closest to Allah when he is prostrating before Him while offering namaz. So, if I really want to repent, I would not want Veena Malik or anyone else to pray for me. I  am fully capable of praying for myself, and of all people, I do not need Veena’s help!

Along with Veena trending in Pakistan, the local Twitterati also found the move distasteful and were openly critical about it. Some of the Tweets I found really interesting were:

Mansoor Ali Khan ‏@MansoorGeoNews

Malik Riaz after watching the #Veena Malik promo on Hero TV – Meray rozay to “SAKROO” ho gayee :P

Adeel Ahmed Ansari ‏@aaansari

#Veena Malik on #HeroTV for ramadan transmission, hope other channels’ll not approach #Mathira in competition.#NightWithMathiraTillSehri

Ali Raza ‏@Hawai_firing

Ramzan 2012: Jannat itni commercial pehlay kabhi na thi.….#Liaqat#Maya #Masood #Afridi #Veena….

Maheen ‏@MaheenAsif1

Ya ALLAH, is Defa Shetaan ko chor dey, #Veena ko Jakarr Lay :/

Praying and repentance is a personal affair; it’s solely between God and a worshipper.

However, TV channels seem to not understand this notion. As the rating war continues like it does every year, this year, too, the media storm has swept away celebrities and personalities that can garner the most eyeballs. They should not use such contemptible tactics to increase their channel’s ratings, at least not for Ramazan – it is appalling.

It should be understood that Ramazan – the most sacred month of the Islamic year – should not be capitalised and used for a means for minting money. This month is meant for begging pardon from God and staying away from ill-doings. Instead these channels go on to making a mockery out of this Holy month.

Also, in turn, the masses should also give up their hypocrisy, because we all know in our hearts that no matter how much Veena or Aamir Liaquat or Maya Khan are hated, people will tune into their shows, wasting the time that could otherwise be used for worshipping or doing something productive, at least.

Lastly, my message to Veena:

“Veena jee, yeh kya baat hui?”

Do you approve of Veena Malik hosting a Ramazan show?

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Read more by Sidrah here or follow her on Twitter @seedwah 

Sidrah.Moiz.Khan

Sidrah Moiz Khan

The author is a sub-editor at The Express Tribune.

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

  • Irtiza

    Since ulemas are being ignored for ramazan programmes, very soon we will see a muft giving best actress award in LSA.Recommend

  • galli ke larki

    why do people take TV this seriously.. get a life and do what you need to do and watch what you want to watch. Hero TV is not being forced down one’s throat. Veena is here for herself and you are here for her. You need to walk away from TV screen and not HER.Recommend

  • Musarratali Khan

    Veena Malik, why blame her.She is merchandise..We all know who and what she is.She has never said otherwise. If any one is to blame, it is the TV station which put up the show.They must have a poor assesment of viewer,s taste
    Recommend

  • Engineerasaurus

    This is the last thing I was expecting.
    It seems like Maya Clan’s prediction might have some weightage.Recommend

  • uzmajehan

    she never misses an opportunity to get publicity…………..wat a dialogue sir ji………..apnay or ap kay gunah………saday konsay gunah veena ji?Recommend

  • Basit

    Another HOT debate going on here…

    I will add only onething here:

    What Veena do in shows, what she wears, no one cares about that. A few bunch of people who do are infact stupid.

    But I strongly oppose that you tie somebody to a subject with whom he/she is not aware of. Here, you are showing Veena as scholar of islam, atleast which I am sure she is not. She might be resenting for her sins in her lonliness, but this doesnt matter to me.
    As for guiding or telling ways to the people, you ought to be a scholar of that subject.

    I am really sorry to read the comments of few people here specially Nandita, you more sound like a feminist. Infact you are taking the discussion in wrong direction. We object someone guiding other who is un-capable of. I seriously dont care ( I better use the word damn here) what she do in her personal capacity.Recommend

  • Mahi

    Every person is responsible for his/her deeds we are not allowed religiously to pass comments on others but as far as Ramadan transmission is concerned, it is a general expectation that no disputed person should be allowed to conduct a program which is going on air during this holy month.Veena may be better than and have purity of mind and heart more than a majority of people it is up to her and Allah is Aleem-un-khabeer; however public concern in this respect can not be neglected ,nor can we put aside the general rule of judging a person in the index of his acts and his fame.Had Veena repented upon her object able dresses , quotes and pornography she would have been welcomed warmly by the public.I am astonished on Veena’s acceptance of hosting a program during which she will have to dress her up totally against her choice and wishes,perhaps bold and arrogant actress within her has taken it as a challenge role to act.Enough said!Recommend

  • observer

    If the Lord can live with his subjects being labelled Wajibul Qatl, He can live with the rest of us. Veena Malik included.Recommend

  • pakistani

    Surprised by the way freedom is defined here ! Freedom means you are free to do whatever you want in a private domain, at your home, things that only affects you not the whole public!

    Media comes under public domain ! So there should be certain restrictions on media given the cultural norms !

    Now I have no right to judge Veena Malik may be she is a better than me !

    But as far as I know she is no Alim or a religious scholar, to do a program which has to do with islamic practices doesn;t make any sense for her !

    It’s same as sachin tendulkar doing a television show for physics or stephen hawking on Cricket ! Recommend

  • Sambs

    @Arif Khan: shurrup b****!Recommend

  • http://angrypakistaniblogger.blogspot.com/ Mirsub Ali Fazlani

    Hey look!

    Veena taking another cheap shot for publicity. Sure, turn the Muslim Holy month into a race for ratings.Recommend

  • waqas

    @Arif Khan:
    Dont tell me man … you surely think parda (veil) out of context to islam ? right !!!Recommend

  • Farhan

    I just can’t stop myself from laughing after watching the Vdo! ROFLMAO
    Rolling On Floor, Laughing My Ass OffRecommend

  • http://sarmadgrewal.wordpress.com Sarmad

    @Arif Khan:
    Really! Then what are clothes for? Why to take burden along you. Why don’t you put them aside?Recommend

  • Fahad

    Maaf kardo yar , Khuda k liay.Recommend

  • Rida Khan

    To everyone who supports whats written in this article, i have a few questions… What guarantee do You have that you are better then Veena? Allah never gave you any guarantee of heaven or Veena any confirmation of hell. Is it your judgement to make? Who are you to decide who’s prayer Allah will accept and whos He wont? If someone who hasn’t inspired any controversial news hosted the program, none of you would have a problem…right? Then tell me who are you to decide that specific person X is better than Veena? And who on earth are you to decide if she can pray for herself and us or not?! How do you know that her prayers will not be accepted? Maybe they are accepted more than yours!
    And even if her behavior has been unrepentant in the past, who are you to decide she hasn’t turned over a new leaf? If she tried to become a part of something good, Shame on everyone who turned her away. Islam is a religion open to ALL, no matter how many sins they have committed in the past. It turns away no one. Recommend

  • LifeH2O

    @PostMan:
    You should not be OK with all that 4 cents. Someone walks nude (I am giving extreme enough example I know) near you, are you really OK with that? You simply won’t do the bad act of staring at his/her. It is her/his right to wear whatever she/he likes (i have written she before he intentionally).
    By the law (of country or of religion) it is not his/her right to do whatever he/she likes.

    You see two people fighting with each other, it is your right to move along or you can jump in and try stopping them. Your choice.Recommend

  • umer

    Funny how much the youth is interested in gossiping over VM. Though i liked couple of tweet the author shared.

    Ali Raza ‏@Hawai_firing

    Ramzan 2012: Jannat itni commercial pehlay kabhi na thi.….#Liaqat#Maya #Masood #Afridi #Veena….

    Maheen ‏@MaheenAsif1

    Ya ALLAH, is Defa Shetaan ko chor dey, #Veena ko Jakarr Lay :/Recommend

  • jade

    Book 017, Number 4206 muslim: Thereupon he (the Holy Prophet) said: Khalid, be gentle. By Him in Whose Hand is my life, she has made such a repentance that even if a wrongful tax-collector were to repent, he would have been forgiven. Then giving command regarding her, he prayed over her and she was buried.( an adultress who repented her sins)
    it is unfair to say that you do not need veena to pray for you, thats assuming you are a better muslim than she is, and are you? if you say you are, who will be the judge? you or Allah?Recommend

  • Hadi Padi

    Lao Veena.Recommend

  • Vikram

    @a moderate muslim: Ramazan is a holy month for Muslims. Muslims are ordered by their religion to cover themselves up and Veena has done no where near that

    You mean Muslims (women) do not need to cover themselves during rest of the year. From these blogs and Internet I have learned Muslim women in Pakistan and other countries get harassed and stared at by Muslim men even when they are wearing burqa or salwaar kameez or other proper dress.

    Pakistan is on the top of list of Internet porn watching countries.

    How many men who use Internet did not try to look up those revealing pictures of Veena.?

    .Recommend

  • Sane

    Congrats to all. Veena could not join the show amid the strong protest.Recommend

  • ALLY

    i do not think she should appear in this programme because she herself always says that religion is between her and her god, she never really talks about religion in public so it seems strange she is taking part in this show… FOR HER the most important thing is being able to wear skimpy clothes why does she not host a programme about thatRecommend

  • http://about.me/hassan.malik Hassan Ali

    I agree with author. I don’t need Veena Malik to pray for me. I can do it myself. Don’t know till when jugglers like Veena Malik and Aamir Liaqat will make us dance like puppets. They are not even worth discussing and thinking. Recommend

  • tj

    such judgmental people we have in our society , why bother who is doing what , just care for your own life, bashing anyone is very easy but who is perfect? it seems that everyone in our society knows exactly what others should do and if they dont follow their suite, they would start their lectures, saying i can do istighfaar for myself is showing that you think highly of yourself and consider her inferior, but thats not the point, thankfully God doesnt judge people by the way they dress.Recommend

  • AQ

    HERE IS MY 10 CENTS-

    First who in the world cares what Veena does. She is an independent thinker and she does whatever she feels is best for her life/career/self esteem and moral reasoning. I am not saying that what is does is right or wrong, but im leaning towards the latter. Commercializing ones body is wrong and no religion encourages that. So we can put this to rest and say that Veena is not a “praticing muslim”. Neither I, or no one else has the right to say she is not a good muslim because only Allah is to judge.

    Second – The main fact which is ruffling everyones feathers is the fact that Islam is being commercialized through a figure like Veena who trails controversies. If you are going to have Islamic shows on TV, only Scholars who know what they are saying should be speaking. And im not talking about the Muftis who like to bias and mold the teachings of Islam to best fit their taste. Islamic shows instead of ridiculing society for their wrong doings, should focus on improving ones character, instead of highlighting ones flaws. This prevents intimidation and makes room for growth and improvement.Recommend

  • AQ

    ALSO, to add to my comments above, if VEENA SOO RIGHTFULLY wants to beg forgivness for her sins, she should do that in a private, this is her relationship with God, not God and millions of other people feeling sorry together.

    If the main purpose is for her to ask forgiveness, she should do it with humility, and it should be sincere, not commercialized. Recommend

  • Manish Kumar

    Mullahs had the time to protest Veena Malik stripping for a men’s magazine by her free will, but I dint hear a word of protest coming from them when women were paraded naked in public.Recommend

  • maira

    HAHAHAHA.. Hero tv’s slogon “dikha de sab kuch” suits this !!! Recommend

  • adeel

    veena is very very [email protected] Habib: Recommend