7 Feb 2024
Actor and model Hira Tareen discussed her perspective on women's rights and highlighted what she perceived as contradictions within feminist narratives.
She appeared in a podcast, where she shared her insights into feminism, stating, “The silencing of any group can often lead to reactions” and demands for change, which is one factor contributing to the rise of feminism.
Extending her support for women rights, she explained, "If women feel they are not being provided equal opportunities and are at the receiving end, then feminism is justified.”
However, she questioned the inclusion of diverse issues in the feminist discourse, saying, “The cause of women right needs a voice of its own; it can't be mixed with other things. If we want everything to be equal to men, then we also shouldn't expect certain advantages over men.”
“Women in Pakistan enjoy unparalleled freedom like nowhere else,” she stated.
“Domestic abuse is wrong. There’s no question about it, you don’t have to be a feminist to raise voice for domestic violence,” she unequivocally condemned domestic violence.
Hira Tareen highlighted that men are often neglected in the women's rights movement, suggesting that it sets a wrong precedent and complicates feminism.
Sharing her personal experience as a woman in Pakistan, she remarked, "Men, for the most part, do treat women respectfully."
Expanding on her point, she noted, “Not every time do men stare at women with wrong intentions. If people are looking at me I know they are gonna look at men because I look different .”
She supported her argument by explaining that when one deviates from the common attire that are different from what people are used to, they often attract attention. but not necessarily with malicious intent.
"It’s all about confidence and how you carry yourself, and I'm aware that it comes from a privileged place," she added.
Hira Tareen argued that men who harbour inappropriate intentions “look at women, regardless of their attire, be it niqab, hijab, or shalwar kameez.“
She emphasised the need to break free from the tunnel vision that exclusively focuses on women's rights, acknowledging that men too have rights that deserve consideration.