LAHORE: While, we are well into the 2000s and women are emerging as a stronger force than before, the stigma attached to smoking is still prevalent in Pakistan. Case in hand: Mahira Khan’s multiple smoking controversies.
However, Pakistani actress Saba Qamar has tackled the stigma surrounding women smoking in the country.
Sharing a black and white picture from her latest photoshoot, Qamar wrote, “Mard peeyein toh wah, Hum peeyein toh haaaa. Tum khao toh chips, Hum khaain toh aaloo (If men smoke then you go wow but if we [women] smoke then you criticise. If you eat then they are fries if we eat they are potatoes).”
She concluded cheekily, “Smoking is injurious to all, not only to women.”
The picture shows Saba posing playfully with a lit cigarette in her mouth and a boombox in her arm.
The picture posted after this is another black and white one which shows Saba holding a board which reads, “Love.Live.Laugh.” with the caption, “Live and let live.”
Saba’s latest post comes, in an apparent reference, a couple of weeks after a video emerged on social media in which Mahira Khan was seen smoking backstage at the Lux Style Awards held this year in Lahore. Previously, Khan was also snapped smoking with Ranbir Kapoor outside a hotel in New York.
Both incidents stirred up a controversy on social media, with people calling out Khan over her choices. However, many spoke out in support of the actress, questioning why nobody objects when men smoke and that it is her personal choice.
Saba is not the only one tackling the stigma attached to women smoking. The recent film, Cake, also showed the lead actresses, Sanam Saeed and Aamina Sheikh, enjoying a cigarette – that too in public.