June 2020

Just 10 Minutes!

Pakistanis love Turkish TV serials and the latest craze is Ertugrul. One of their favourite characters in the serial, Halime Sultan, is played by Turkish actress Esra Bilgic. Esra tied the knot with Gökhan Töre in 2017 in the presence of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan. However, they ended their two year marriage in 10 minutes before a court.

During a hearing, Esra Bilgic renounced all property claims against her spouse, a football player. Though he said he had no problems with his wife, the reason behind the divorce was said to be the infidelity of Gökhan - and Esra just could not forgive him.

Tolerant Pakistan

India accuses its Muslim population of spreading Covid-19 in the country, left, right and centre. In sharp contrast, Pakistan treats its minorities with respect. Manmeet Kaur, a Sikh female journalist from Peshawar, has been selected as one of the most 100 influential Sikh personalities under 30 around the world. She has won a prestigious award in the United Kingdom and her country supports her all the way.

Manmeet is a social activist and has received local awards for highlighting issues of minorities and women. She holds a postgraduate degree in social sciences and has also served as an administrator at a computer academy.

Another Pakistani non-Muslim who has recently attracted attention is Rahul Dev. He has been selected as a jet pilot in the Pakistan Air Force. He is from Tharparkar in Sindh and the PAF did not have any qualms in selecting him as a pilot officer since he fulfilled all pre-requisites with, literally, flying colours.

Perplexed Princess

Princess Hend Al Qassimi, who is an Emirati royal and businesswoman, was perplexed when she heard of the hate speech made by BJP/RSS leader Rajeshwar Singh. He had said that the Muslims and Christians would be wiped out of India by 2021. He had openly boasted his government’s intent to ethnically cleanse 200 million Muslims and 28 million Christians from the country.

This was rather perplexing for the Emirati royal since the UAE has always had a tolerant attitude towards the Muslims of India and Indians of all religions have always played an important role in development of the UAE’s trade and economy.

Welcome Sequel

Perhaps it wasn’t quite acceptable to the Pakistani public that was hooked on to the TV serial ‘Mere Pas Tum Ho’ to see the protagonist die in the concluding scene. Pakistani TV serials are generally based on melodrama and depiction of a lifestyle of the middle and upper classes that is far removed from real-life stories that PTV based its plays on back in the 60s and 70s.

But it seems the public has still not had enough of ‘Mere Pas Tum Ho’ and they would welcome a sequel of the serial – with the same actors, perhaps.