With conviction of Harvey Weinstein owing to the criminal sexual assault and third-degree rape followed by testimonies of two famous TV personalities and 90 other women, the #MeToo movement has made a huge impact worldwide. Pakistanis too have given a lot of support and encouragement to this movement however, it still need needs acceptance in the courtrooms in our country.
In the wake of this movement, Saba Qamar, the talent powerhouse who is known for essaying bold characters on the silver screen seems to have hopes post Weinstein’s conviction.
Speaking to The Express Tribune, Saba says that the Pakistani showbiz industry should learn something from the Weinstein verdict now that the he has been found guilty solely based on the testimonies of his victims.
She says: “I am glad the Weinstein verdict came in favour of the survivors because now we have a tangible example of an accused being confirmed a predator by the rule of law. That is our biggest win.”
Saba agrees that exploitation, requests for sexual favors and incidents of harassment and abuse are common things in the showbiz industry, be it Pakistan or anywhere else in the world. However, according to her, Pakistanis lack a course of action.
“It is eventually the rule of law that decides who is guilty not you and me no matter how true our stories maybe. I am not ashamed to admit that sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, and abuse is a common practice in our industry and it is high time we start reporting such cases.”
Shedding light on her own personal experiences, Saba shared that herself has received calls from shady directors and producers who indirectly have asked her for ‘favours’. But she feels this is where the women have to act smart.
“I believe no woman is a bechaari(helpless), all of us are powerful in our own ways and should be cautious and smart about an unwanted situation that can be avoided. And mind you, such predatory advances and behaviors are not just limited to the showbiz industry.”