Qandeel Baloch, also known as Kim Kardashian of Pakistan, came and conquered Pakistani social media scene in no time. What appeared as a provocative account challenging the social and cultural norms to many people, was there to show the true mirror to many people. She called herself a one-woman army who was enough to fight for herself. Through her videos, Qandeel Baloch openly challenged dual standards and hypocrisy. She was hated by many and loved by only a few.
Qandeel Baloch was first seen on the television screen in ‘Pakistan Idol’
Qandeel Baloch chose to live her life on her own terms. At least, her social media account suggested so. Not many people knew about Qandeel Baloch’s whereabouts. All that I can remember so far is that I saw her for the first time on Pakistani talent show ‘Pakistan Idol.’ Qandeel was a bubbly young girl who was brutally ridiculed on this show by the judges. Probably this was the format of the show: to mock the contestants and earn some handsome TRP for Pakistan Idol. Qandeel, who wanted to make a name for herself through singing, was dejected but still determined to make a name for herself.
Qandeel Baloch showed the mirror to Pakistani society
In a society like Pakistan where women are even afraid of posting their photos online, Qandeel Baloch chose to become a rebel. She revolted against the norms of the society that pressed women to conceal their voice of any sort. She wore what she liked. She spoke what she liked. Her videos would become viral the moment they were released. Qandeel Baloch knew how to touch the raw nerve of a hypocritical society. Her videos sparked fury and anger among a major faction of the society. People neither missed watching her videos mocking the dual standards of the society nor venting their frustration and anger over a woman who refused to abide by social laws and norms.
She never cared
She continued posting on social media. She continued creating the controversies which took a serious turn when Qandeel Baloch posted pictures and videos with famous Islamic cleric Mufti Abdul Qavi. This was taken seriously because Mufti Abdul Qavi was not only highly respected but also influential. Qandeel Baloch did not hide anything and even exposed the respected cleric on television interviews. Qandeel Baloch also went to the extent of exposing Pakistan’s current Prime Minister Imran Khan’s relationship with his spiritual leader. This did not sit well with many factions of the conservative Pakistani society.
Soon, there came a drop scene.
Qandeel Baloch killed in sleep
Qandeel Baloch was killed in sleep by none other than her own brother Waseem on July 15th,2016. According to the reports, he was instigated by people around him to murder her sister in the name of ‘honor’. He believed that Qandeel Baloch had brought a bad name to the society through her videos especially the one with Mufti Abdul Qavi. Qandeel Baloch’s parents clearly named the culprit who was their own son and filed an FIR against Waseem. Soon a bill was passed against honor killing. It seemed that her murder had paved the way of justice for many women who had lost their lives in the name of honor killing.
Justice delayed is justice denied
Three years have passed. Justice has still not been served. Twenty court hearings have gone futile. Qandeel Baloch, who bore the expenses of her poor parents, is there no more. They can not even afford to attend the court hearings anymore. In an interview given to journalist Laiba Zainab, the accused Waseem completely denied that he murdered his own sister. Despite giving many contradictory statements in the same interview, Waseem neither seemed guilty nor remorseful about his heinous act. Her lawyer also expressed his grief over justice in the process of denial. Mufti Abdul Qavi is up to whatever he likes. Despite being locked for a few days, he is free as a bird. Qandeel Baloch is here no more. Her parents have lost their only strength. Justice delayed is justice denied.