There's a new tear-jerking ad on the airwaves, and this one's telling dads to not dictate their daughter's life choices.
In the ad, aspiring cricketer Sara leaves home to train for the Pakistan team, even though her father maintains that "girls don't play cricket." After months of training, she makes it to the team, putting her mother and neighbourhood into a jubilant mood. Her father, though moved by the news, doesn't reach out to his daughter. But when Sara takes the winning wicket in her first match, her teary-eyed father calls to congratulate her on the pitch.
The ad also marks the launch of smartphone brand QMobile's new logo and tagline 'New Age. New Conversations.' The tagline drives home the point that letting daughters pursue their dreams and being proud of their achievements is the order of the day - and holding on to age-old notions of what girls should and shouldn't do isn't.
This ad is the latest addition to a limited pool of ads that question Pakistan's rigid gender roles. Tapal attempted to overturn the tea-making stereotype by having superstar Fawad Khan make his tired wife (Momal Sheikh) a cup of tea after she returns from work. HBL put the spotlight on another boundary-breaker, mountaineer Samina Baig, by selecting her as the face of their brand in recent campaigns.
Public service messages like these are welcome at a time when girls and women continue to have to surmount a number of societal obstacles to pursue their academic and professional goals. Such ads serve as good reminders that their restrictions shouldn't start at home - at least.