Anoushey Ashraf plays holi on Pakistan Day to send a powerful message about acceptance

Anoushey Ashraf plays holi on Pakistan Day to send a powerful message about acceptance

"As a Muslim, as a Pakistani I feel I need to appreciate other people, their cultures and my country - and it's okay."
Updated 24 Mar, 2019

Anoushey Ashraf wants to share an important message with all Pakistanis - and it's a strong case for peace and unity.

On 23rd March, the star was invited by designer Deepak Perwani to celebrate holi with friends and family and also commemorate Pakistan Day.

Before heading out for the party, Anoushey chose the moment to spread a powerful message among her audience. She went on Instagram wearing a Pakistan tee and said: "Wearing my Pakistan Tee on resolution day and enjoying the diversity of my land by celebrating Holi with the Hindu community. PAKISTAN FOR ALL! I'm wearing my Pakistan shirt today; celebrating the armed forces, wearing the beauty of this country and everything that Pakistan hast to offer [which] I'm truly very grateful for as you should be as well."

"But two lessons [to be learned] here today on 23rd March: I am going to a Hindu friend's Holi party and I want to be a part of it because I want to celebrate the diversity in Pakistan on 23rd March. So I'm going to ask for one thing from all of you today and that is acceptance, tolerance for everybody because that's exactly what Muslims are looking for around the world. We should become the example ourselves and be good to those who do not follow our faith but are still a part of this nation."

Unfortunately, this struck the wrong cord with a few fans and Anoushey sought to sort the issue through a live Instagram session and clarify.

"I want to go [to the holi party]. As a Muslim, as a Pakistani I feel I need to appreciate other people, their cultures and my country - and it's okay," she said.

"I know other people may think otherwise, I get it; many people might think this is not right or that it's not part of our culture or our religion, [but] without being controversial, our religion also teaches us to keep others happy and treat them with respect and that nothing is bigger than humanity."

The star stressed that there is a dire need to have a conversation on this matter and address "the importance of other cultures and religions in Pakistan and how as Muslims we should behave. Are we doing them a favour by letting them have Dilwali or Holi, Christmas? No, we are not. This is their right as citizens of this country and one must realise this 100%.

"We're not bigger than anyone, everyone is an equal part of this country. It is an Islamic state, there's not doubt about that, we have to respect that but we are no one to stop anyone or give them the right to practice their religion, this is their right, this is their culture and we have to give them that freedom together, the same that Muslims look for in the entire world for their religion by wanting to do hijab [freely] or go to mosques [without fear]."

She then urged others to take the public holiday to "understand the imp of the resolution, read up about it, go over it why Pakistan was created, who as it created for and how would Quaid want us to be as citizens of this country."

Anoushey shared a photo from the holi party with a caption to further drive home the point.

"5 hate comments! Over 3600 likes. Not bad, Pakistan. Not turning the comments section off. And haters, don’t delete your comments and run once you’ve been given a reply. It’s fun. You see what you want to see. I’m not here to make you see otherwise. I'm just sharing the love. Got no love? step aside and scroll forward."

"How about Christians calling out the PM of NZ a hypocrite for covering her head and standing in complete solidarity with the Muslim community having the Azaan played on all channels for Friday prayers? We would’ve burned down half our country had such an act taken place here but are loving the love from them? LEAD by example. And change happens when we speak."

She added, "Someone smart once said, 'If Muslims around the world need to feel respected and accepted by people of all faiths, they themselves should respect and accept people of all faiths'. I'm only joining in the festivities, not converting and dancing to the tunes of their ‘religion’ ...some of you are a joke. Please breathe. Take a shower. Watch some Cartoon Network and get off Instagram. Relax."