Veena Malik is no fool!

Published: January 28, 2011

She wasn't wearing mascara; did she know she was going to cry?

Veena Malik’s appearance on Bigg Boss 4 and her current interview on Express News has been the subject of many a cushy drawing room debate.  Liberals everywhere are incensed by the mufti sahab who did not even watch Bigg Boss and yet was quick to pass judgement on Malik.

Fair enough.  Malik’s supporters have rushed to Facebook to give her a big thumbs up and cheer their ‘hero’ on.  Veena takes on mullah and wins, they scream.

Now we all know that this was pretty much a setup. Kamran Shahid pitched Malik against a mufti and then called Ashmit Patel who made some asinine comments about Malik and yoga. This is an example of masala television at its best and off the chart ratings for all concerned. And as a disbelieving friend pointed out, “She wasn’t wearing mascara, she knew she was going to cry?” (who would’ve thought). Shahid, of course, was anything but neutral, he knew his audience well and played to it.

Who asked the misogynist?

What annoyed me was Shahid’s sermon to Malik at the tail end of the show. He closed the show by reprimanding the entertainer and telling her that if she had asked for his advice he would have told her not to go to India in the first place. America, maybe, India no way.

I wonder if Shahid has passed his kernels of wisdom to, say, Atif Aslam? Ali Zafar? Rahat Fateh Ali Khan? Strings? I am sure he has been warning all of them against crossing borders and getting their hands on that fat pay check. If it smells like sexism and looks like sexism, well then it must be sexism. One thing is clear, if Shahid is given three times his pay in bad old India, he is not hopping the border.

India pays better

Malik recently said in a print interview that the money she made in India in three months is what she makes in Pakistan in one year.  Bingo! The sad truth is that we want to be entertained but we’d really like our entertainers to do it for free, thanks very much. India is a bigger entertainment market and with the flagging movie industry in Pakistan, a lot of Pakistani talent will shift across borders to make a living.  Is there anything wrong with that? Doctors move to Saudi Arabia to get lucrative positions. Professionals move to the UK and US to earn precious foreign currency.  So why can’t a Veena Malik or a Meera? Why shouldn’t entertainers travel to get better paid work? If you want our actresses to be donning dupattas and playing nice on telly, pay them big bucks and I’m sure they will be willing to do it. And let’s see how many YouTube hits that gets. Networks, are you listening?

Use the remote

As for Malik’s antics being a blow to Pakistani womanhood, I am sure that blow is not lethal. Just as Britney Spears and Aishwariya Rai do not represent their country’s women when they are playing a role, neither does Malik. This is television, it’s fiction, remember? Malik does not represent all the women in this country.  She is an actress who went to another country for a job and in no way was representing a nation. She represents what the viewers want to see, and is a prime example of ‘what the market wants, our entertainers deliver’.

If you don’t like what you see, the solution is very simple.

Get off that couch and switch the TV off.


Saeed Rahman

A senior sub-editor for the Lahore pages of 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.

  • Emme

    Bahahhahaha!I love the last line. EXACTLY- shut the idiot box off if you don’t like it!Recommend

  • Noreen Shams

    wht a great angle of issue nice one Recommend

  • Bilal

    Agreed… This show was totally planned…..Media wanted to show what audience wanted to see…there was not any reality…the show was very artificial……Mufti sahab bechara was doing same thing that Malik was doing in India, He was earning few pennies…..Recommend

  • alina

    why are we still talking about veena malik? please someone explain me that!Recommend

  • parvez

    After reading this the first comment that comes to mind is that you don’t have to get off the couch to switch off the TV, you use the remote. Recommend

  • Ramzan+Ali

    Well said Meena !!! People should watched her on the Kamran Shahid Show how was dressed-up….. She is in a showbiz industry & What we say is that “JO DIKHTA HAI WOH BIKHTA HAI”Recommend

  • Khalid FAROOQ

    Rightly said and elaborated. In the first place, bringing Miss Malik and religious scholar together was more than an insult to viewers’ taste. We have gone in our bid to pump adrenaline in our viewers’ bloodstream that a discussion between a pro-veena and an anti-veena wouldn’t have been sold that good, had it been much more quite and decent in approach. I wonder if some day they call Mustafa Khar and Tehmina Durrani in a show with Mian Shahbaz Sharif an telephone and discuss the truthfullness of My Feudal Lord. Shame on the anchor. And he crossed all limits by putting an adbert on the fron page of newspaper that his rubbish episode was seen by largest number of public. Our media perhaps needs to go a long way in order to get mature and decent.Recommend

  • BinYamin

    I really can’t understand why are we cursing Veena for doing something which she was already doing. Why can’t we understand that it’s her profession. She is doing good business and just like most Pakistani businessmen ethics or religion of customer doesn’t matter. She is selling her talent/product/property and naturally would go for highest bidder. Her body is her property and if she wants to sell it who can stop her. Morality and ethics doesn’t count anymore in showbiz.Recommend

  • Jehan Naseem

    ever heard of water-proof mascara? it doesn’t run and has been around for a whileRecommend

  • Hassaan

    I don’t particularly care for ‘masla’ TV but I will be honest, I watched almost all of the weeks that Miss Malick was on Big Boss 4 and I cheered her on when she came on Express defending herself.

    Veena Malick has been targeted and wrongfully so. My view is about the criticism, why is there so much of it and why is it all negative? She is right to be criticised as are our politicians, writers and celebrities. Why must the focus be on the negative?

    I am proud of her performance on Big Boss, this is a sentiment I expressed to many people before she returned to Pakistan, and I think she is handling the situation well. I hope the ‘Fatwaws’ and the cases are dropped. Recommend

  • KA

    So what you’re saying is just because she wasnt wearing a mascara this whole show was a setup? It might be a setup but atleast have sound solid arguments to support your idea.

    I think this article is a mere repetition of what we have already read enough about not just generally but sufficiently on Tribune. Please be more creative and come up with new stuff to write about. Enough about just one show its starting to get boring now. Recommend

  • Sana

    If you don’t like what you see, the solution is very simple.

    Get off that couch and switch the TV off.

    A big yesssss and Bingo for these last lines Recommend

  • alina

    Thank you KA!Recommend

  • Aslam

    Mufti was confused between religion and culture. Religion and culture are two different things and mufti himself was not sure what he was talking about and by any measure Veena had more reason and logic in her argument than mufti. Its time to move forward. Our society need to evolve if we don’t to be missed out in 21st century.Recommend

  • Adnan

    Pretty soon more such reality shows will be happening openly on our roads.
    we should open a reality show account in Pakistan so that we can pay veena for such reality shows.Recommend

  • abdul

    looks like no one care about the word “Pakistani” these bloggers jst love writting about veena malik and even more love defending her with new theories Recommend

  • http://google Dr Priyanka

    Thanks for the article. Its really heartwarming to see that people in Pakistan have a liberal attitude. I am an Indian doctor and have worked in the middle – east, and am an ardent fan and supporter of Ms Veena Malik. When I commented in her favour, the Indians accused me of being either Ms Malik or her agent and got abused by some [not all] Pakistanis for supporting her. I am glad people are giving their precious time and listening to us. I think Mr Kamraan was a biased anchor. Hope experience teaches him to improve upon his interviewing skills. Pakistan has a lot of unexplored talent. The advantage Pakistani artists from the entertainment industry have over the Indians is that they speak good urdu. That helps in good delivery of dialogue and that gives an actor /actress confidence which reflects on their performance. Lols Dr Priyanka UKRecommend

  • randomrandom

    Probably the most sane opinion i have read in all this chaos. FantasticRecommend

  • Amjad

    Pakistan is full of hypocrites. Im sure the host of the show is one big hypocrite. Indian entertainment industry is huge. Who does not want to become richer?? Pakistani stars make peanuts compared to indian stars. Just look at indian filmstars who make around 30crore per movie.

    If the host of the show was offered money 10times more than he is getting he will run off to india! But sadly for him no such offer will come. Veena Malik is an entertainer and wants fame and money. Pakistani market cannot offer her this so she had no choice but to go to india. Every pakistani entertainer would do the same. Just look at our pakistani cricket players they all run off to india to take part in the IPL. They all want a piece of the indian entertainment pie.Recommend

  • Kiran

    Dude, if you’re making a claim support it with evidence. There’s no proof it was a set up, except your alleged ‘lack of mascara’. What a waste of time!Recommend

  • Aisha aijaz

    Perfect piece.. Finally a sane voice !Recommend

  • Amna

    I think the thing about masacra doesn’t mean anything.Even in Bigg Boss Veena didn’t wear masacra most of the time.. what does this show then?Recommend

  • Farhan

    Well written! But kindly, we must stop the topic now, there is a lot more stuff to focus on & divert our concerns towards.Recommend

  • sherry

    wowwww…. amazing!!! at least someone talks sense here!!!Recommend

  • Numair Abbasi

    Why are we even discussing her. Stop with Veena Malik im sick of reading up on her. What she did is her business… has nobody got any other more concerning issue to write about?Recommend

  • The Only Normal Person Here.

    //“She wasn’t wearing mascara, she knew she was going to cry?” (who would’ve thought).//

    Having Zaid Hamid moment? Are we?Recommend

  • M. Uzair Sukhera

    Someone putting the things in their right place! M SO glad… People! Find better things to do. Team up to build Pakistan and not talk about bigotism, polarization and fanaticism. The more you talk about it the more it grows. So simply ditch it and snub it! Get back to work.Recommend

  • Mohammad Saqib

    Great work Mr. Saeed Rehman… i must say…..
    well m from Delhi, India and was the witness of all the hooplas plotted against Malik…..
    i must agree but u r damn right man……..
    i will be short now:
    bravo at ur honor….
    Mr. Rehman…Recommend

  • iqra

    This side was not told by any one. but last line really meant it we should really stop watching that idiot box. It makes sences to her foolish acts.Recommend

  • Hammad Siddiqui

    Agreed 100%. I guess we are over reacting and making her popular. Good luck is working for Veena!Recommend

  • Tamoor Azhar

    swith off is best solution . media should also try to ignore ths type of controversal issue .veena represent pakistan but not represent life style of pakistani women.Recommend

  • http://[email protected] Umer

    Drs goes to KSA and professionals to UK USA
    Mr khan, atif aslam to india etc….
    Fame and wealth all accepted, reasoned, understood !!!
    But please o please do not defame “our” Pakistan !!Recommend

  • Ahmed Iqbal

    Very well written and argued. I also agree to the point “The sad truth is that we want to be entertained but we’d really like our entertainers to do it for free, thanks very much.” Maybe that is why the politicians have been forced to provide entertainment and that too for free. Recommend

  • javid

    veena malik is worst actressRecommend

  • Amer

    @Author: I did exactly what your last line says and never watched the show anyways…
    I am bored with this Veena Malik story now. Seriously, aren’t there better things to talk about already? Recommend

  • Alisha kk

    This woman Veena thinks that she was kept in Big Boss house because the Indians loved her she is sadly mistaken she was kept there for 84 days or so because she provided them cheap entertainment and nothing else.
    She said it was -10 at night so she had to sleep in the same blanket what a lame excuse was she in Alaska couldn’t she get her own blanket or was there rationing on the comforters? Recommend

  • K Shah

    It was just pure entertainment for the public , lets leave it there. Recommend

  • Syeda Zunaira Zubair

    Well we had Talat Hussain (a famous anchor) at our university a few days back and he said that Veena Malik’s show was the second highest rated show at Express. And he was damn sure that everyone present in the auditorium had watched that show. What else can one guess??? A strategy for getting high ratings..

    And changing the channel is the same option that he gave us.Recommend

  • Zubair

    I fail to understand why Veena Malik has become such a hot topic all of a sudden??? She is an entertainer and that’s exactly what she did. She made the show so much more interesting. I actually lost interest after she was evicted.
    Veena Malik belongs to the entertainment industry of Pakistan, and what exactly is the entertainment industry here again??? Let’s not even go to the topic of what all happens on stage and the Pakistani films. She went to India with an agenda and she achieved it and very rightly so. She never claimed to be an ambassador of Pakistan or representing the culture. She was asked to participate due to the cricket scandal and that’s how she got a little known internationally.
    My question to all the people including the mullahs is that did they actually watch the show beginning till the end??? I doubt that….. All they saw were clips and they can be so easily manipulated to present false pretences.
    One more Question to the Mullas again…. If you bring Islam into what she did and what she should have done then why were they watching this TV show at all, why didn’t they protest against ARY that was airing this show to the masses? The Indian channels are already not airing anyway. When there can be protest in India against taking this show off the prime time and airing it after 11pm because of its content, who got out and said anything about stop airing the show in Pakistan. Everyone seemed to enjoyed it till the end and now saying things against it. A Muslim man shouldn’t even be watching a female newscaster read the news…. Everyone does that as well so why question Veena at what she does and has been doing in the past. There’s nothing new that she did, it’s all happening here in Pakistan.
    We have bigger problems to deal with as a nation and this is what we are worried about?????
    Veena I’m on your side> I may not fully agree with all the things you did on the show but you can’t be blamed for it you’re an individual who knows what right and wrong and that’s your personal life…..Recommend

  • bsami

    Why indeed is VM such a hot topic ….indeed. If she is paid better why should she not go to perform across the border and more importantly she is not representing her country or the general women in this country the same way Ash and Britney dont when they work outside the country. We as a nation have become habitual of pointing fingers at others while we do what we please that may or may not be pleasing to the others. Recommend

  • Ammar

    I am not sure why some people in Pakistan are making a big deal out of the whole thing? The problem with some parts of our society is that we are very sensitive (meant in the negative sense) to almost EVERYTHING foreign to us. If everyone adopts the motto ‘live and let live,’ Pakistan will surely be a better place. And ‘live and let live’ not in the sense that we let anyone do anything but as long as his/her actions aren’t affecting anyone then it shouldn’t matter. Yes, easier said than done but as they say charity starts at home so each of us have to start making the effort.

    I am aware that my comments are off topic, however are indirectly relevant to this blog. Recommend

  • Bingo

    Rightly expressed, however disagree with author’s point of representation as a national while one works abroad. Recommend

  • Vital

    Veena’s importance is overrated, when no issues were raised on many other celebrities crossing borders, Veena is too insignifcant to talk about..Rightly said Veena doesnt represent the common Pakistani woman…as for religion, unfortunately which is ranked at the lowest level in our checklist of distinguishing right from wrong, we should not pass false and insolent comments unless not acquainted with what religion actually demands, also what we say, should be implemented by us first. In that case Even our own national channels, MOST OF ALL our own self, should be jugded on religious grounds, and then even u know where we will find ourself, so i guess then Veena Malik case is of really low importance!…We should move out of it, its high time!Recommend

  • waris

    god brings good women in deep waters not to drown them but to cleanse themRecommend

  • waris

    i know if you point one finger towards others rest are pointing towards youRecommend

  • AA

    Well said Farhan. Recommend

  • Asif ilyas

    For me BIG BOSS was nothing just pre-planned drama where romance between veena and ashmit was just to creat intrest of viewers in a show.As we saw in indian movies,same type of stories in which girl belongs to pakistan and boy from india ( if in case,both from india then moslty girl would be muslim).I watch veena first drama on PTV 11 years ago and in here career of 11 years,she had nothing except scandle with asif and some copy-type characters.Recommend

  • ananymus

    I’m a Pakistani American and raising two kids here in US. Thank God that I’m not raising them in Pakistan. Over here in the US it very easy to tell our kids what is right and wrong. All the time we can support ourselves by saying that guys its American culture not OURS.
    Well, It’s a shame to see where this Pakistani young nation is heading.
    Wow!!! they are supporting someone who has done some thing wrong and repressing herself as Pakistani Muslim.
    Why you guys are so against ACCOUNTABILITY.
    Well Pakistani younger generation, you don’t need to take your cloths off to SHOW TRUE TALENT.Recommend

  • Shakir shahzad

    The main reason is thd she has becom a fam0us celebrity jst n0t in wh0le pakistan also in w0rld aftr big b0ss n n0w i like her 2 much she realy didn’t anythng wr0n so plz thnk aß0ut her wd [email protected]: Recommend

  • Humanoid

    Kamran Shahid’s tried to elicit the “Ego” factor here. When 95% of Pakistan watches Indian movies, 30% of our musicians go there to make money and name. 95% listen and dance on Indian tunes, there neither mullah nor Kami speaks! Trust me, tomorrow if mullahs son gets married the movie will have Indian songs!

    Double standards, hypocrisy. Our “men” can go, but “our” women cannot! So are these mullah or Kami’s going to pay Veena’s bills? Did anyone accuse Mohammad Asif when he cheated her? Did any one call Salman Butt a cheat when he sold country? Did any one say anything to Shoiab Malik when he went to INDIA and gotten marrried to SANIA? No, these are our men at crusade against the BATIL!Recommend

  • http://gmail Dr Priyanka

    Sorry to say this but you sound too narrow minded, not like a person who has settled in the US. Don’t shame yourself by these backward mentality and the fact that you are actually abusing a woman. Being an Indian, I am apalled at what is happening to some sections of society in the world. You cannot act as judge and jury ! Think how you are going to progress ? Recommend

  • Salim Akbar

    Respect to Veena Malik !!!Recommend

  • Salim Akbar

    Respect to Veena Malik !!Respect to Veena Malik !!!Recommend