Internet Uproar After Pakistani Woman Dresses Her Husband In Burqa

By Mandy Froelich / Truth Theory

In the United States and in Europe, people, for the most part, dress however they please. But, in more conservative countries, freedom of expression isn’t viewed so lightheartedly. In Pakistan, for instance, Islamic women are expected to abide by cultural norms and wear a burqa. Earlier this week, however, a Pakistani activist challenged gender stereotypes by sharing a photograph of her husband wearing the garment. The internet has since been set ablaze.

“This is my beautiful husband. Of course, you can’t see how beautiful he is because I make sure he keeps his beauty (read: identity) hidden as I am the only true haqdaar of it,” Héra Mannan Khan wrote on her Mewlyweds Instagram page. “Everything he is, all his achievements, dreams, all of his fkn life, he owes it to me.”

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This is my beautiful husband. Of course, you can't see how beautiful he is because I make sure he keeps his beauty (read: identity) hidden as I am the only true haqdaar of it. Everything he is, all his achievements, dreams, all of his fkn life, he owes it to me. Any namehram's nazar is haraam on him, so I prefer he stay at home as the world is a bad place. However, it is ok when he goes out with me. I took him to dinner at @madroostapk last night. We only go there because they use steroid free chicken and we are very health conscious, especially after knowing how growth hormone injected chicken can affect fertility. I don't want his fertility to be affected because his major purpose of existing is to give me children and make me a mother. So no matter what, I only bring him to eat out here. I Iove how he modestly hides himself while going out, as he is khuli tijori and I wouldn't want him to get molested. Even then if he gets molested, we will accept that as qismah and hope that the abuser will be punished in akhirah. I on the other hand can roam around and loiter on my own, in my chadda banyaan, in my tank top in my spaghetti strap top or even shirtless, because I am a woman. I am not scared of other women. They will not assault me. And even if they do, I will not talk about it because it will prove me weak and defenceless in front of the whole wide world. A woman is not supposed to be weak, you know, we were created to be strong and macho. Also, I let him go out to work and drive cuz I am a strong believer in equality. However, looking at na-mehrams and interacting with them in any way is strictly prohibited. It is my duty to ensure these practices as a pious husband is my key to jannah, how will I get to sleep with 70 virgins in the afterlife warna? Also photography and all is also haraam but we had to do this since in attempt to educate you all and save you from qabar ke saanp and jahannum ki aag. Where's my medal? . . . #genderroles #smashingpatriarchy #dawn #nomeansno #consent #endrapeculture #metoo

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Khan added that she prefers her husband Waleed Ahmed Saeed Khan stay home. Despite this, she took him to dinner last night. She wrote that they ate steroid-free chicken because she doesn’t “want his fertility to be affected because his major purpose of existing is to give me children and make me a mother.”  

“I Iove how he modestly hides himself while going out,” she added, “I wouldn’t want him to get molested.”

“I, on the other hand, can roam around and loiter on my own…in my tank top in my spaghetti strap top or even shirtless, because I am a woman,” Khan wrote. The activist added that she isn’t afraid of being assaulted by other women. “And even if they do, I will not talk about it because it will prove me weak and defenseless in front of the whole wide world. A woman is not supposed to be weak, you know, we were created to be strong and macho.”

In the post, Waleed boasted that she allows Waleed to go to work and drive. She added that once she ensures he remains pious, she will “get to sleep with 70 virgins in the afterlife.” Several hashtags were added, including #smashingpatriarchy and #endrapeculture.

The internet had a field day with the post. For the most part, the couple has received many encouraging comments.

Of course, hateful feedback was received, as well.

To those who left hateful comments, Khan replied: “it ain’t my responsibility to teach you how satire works” and “people like you are exactly the problem. You are the reason I had to put up such a post in the first place.”\

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Khan followed up with another post showing her husband holding her handbag. She wrote, “Men, you must show your wives as much love, tenderness, and respect as they do to you. Don’t be ashamed of that.”

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The shame associated with men doing little things for their wives out of sheer courtesy and love is real. We expect wives to be obedient, subservient, submissive to their husbands, and often we're ready to quote all kinds of religious scripture to support them. However, thanks to patriarchy and our innate urge to justify and further impose it, we forget what religion says about treating your wife. Can my husband not fry himself some sausages or make himself a mug of coffee? He very well can, and most of the times he does. But sometimes I do it, because it makes me happy. In the same way, can I not carry my own bag, or open my own doors? Well, most of the times, I do. But sometimes he insists on carrying my bag, and I let him. The "joru ka ghulam", "zann mureed", "wife pleaser" tags are real. Real bullshit, I assure you. You, as men, owe your wives just as much love, respect, and tenderness as they owe you. Do not hesitate to practice this behaviour both in private AND in public. Do not be ashamed of it.

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