A lesson on how NOT to wish 'Happy Women's Day', courtesy PTI Senator Dr Faisal Javed

A lesson on how NOT to wish 'Happy Women's Day', courtesy PTI Senator Dr Faisal Javed

Men honouring women don't need to be honoured today — really understand what the discussion should be about.
Updated 08 Mar, 2021

It's right there in the name. There's no ambiguity about what March 8 stands for universally.

International Women's Day

Yet, many men consciously and unconsciously shift the narrative to the gender that this day is not about — case in point, PTI Senator Dr Faisal Javed using the hashtag #HappyWomensDay to talk about Imran Khan and his struggles and his achievements.

"Who can pay the biggest tribute to a woman than Imran Khan who saw his mother dying from cancer & opened a hospital after her name paying a great tribute — SKMCH became the only cancer hospital in the World that provides free treatment to over 70% of patients," the Senator tweeted.

Let's pause here for a brief moment to remind everyone what International Women's Day is about:

International Women's Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. Significant activity is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women's achievements or rally for women's equality.

Marked annually on March 8th, International Women's Day is one of the most important days of the year to:

  • celebrate women's achievements
  • raise awareness about women's equality
  • lobby for accelerated gender parity
  • fundraise for female-focused charities

Before the troll brigade gears up, no one is undermining Imran Khan's contribution to the society by setting up Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre. But could Dr Javed, on a day dedicated to celebrating women and talking about their struggles and achievements, not refrain from paying a tribute to Imran Khan?

Yes, his earlier tweets from the day include one about women's "spirit of selfless service" and one honouring Fatima Surayya Bajia.

But it is mere lip service if you don't understand what the day is about and really understand the conversations that are supposed to be taking place.

For one, the Senator — and other men who want to be allies — can take a cue from here:

"Celebrate women's achievement. Raise awareness against bias. Take action for equality."

An example of what you can do — that too from within Dr Javed's party — is that of MNA Asad Umar, who chose to highlight the role of female PTI members and their "integral" contribution to the party's struggle.

"We would not be where we are without the contributions of these women," he tweeted.

It goes back to the same thing: really understand what the day is about and why women are marching. Don't just fixate on the posters — and even if you do, instead of bashing them, try to understand what frustrated women to the point that they had to write something 'brazen' to get society's attention.

Men, you have all the right to heap praise on each other and high-five your accomplishments, but use this day (one out of 365 days isn't asking a lot) to focus on the women in your life — what have they accomplished, what do they want to accomplish, what is standing in their way?

Women continue to fight for their place in offices, public spaces, politics, schools, in public transportation — and when we say this we mean without having to deal with misogyny or harassment — and on Women's Day, they persist in trying to get their narrative across without all the extra chatter drowning them out.

Give them space, let them be heard.


Fastrack Mar 08, 2021 02:07pm
How come so-called liberals never criticise Zardari who didn't investigate or punish murderers of the highest profiled woman of Pakistan- his own wife? After he even confessed knowing the killers. But the greatest symbol of love for a woman, the SKMT hurt you?
Thinking Mar 08, 2021 02:09pm
Asad looks more matured for a better role than smq. Asad plays his cards very carefully
Toni Mar 08, 2021 02:13pm
Everyday; Be Happy, make it yours, NOT just on one day of the year. A woman is born everyday as a "Human", with Labels to become a mother, daughter, sister and a spouse if she wishes etc. Being Happy is your personal choice, being Happier is just a desire dependent on others; keep it SIMPLE, just be another Human, the only common thing on Earth, no diversity!
Chrís Dăn Mar 08, 2021 02:18pm
Thank you,Dr.Javed and Asad Umer. This is how the educated representatives of any country speak- with responsibility and decency. Moving messages and beautiful because of the way eternal tryths conveyed.
AK Mar 08, 2021 02:34pm
Some PTI members are going too far to bring IK in everything even when they do no find any logical and justiciable reasoning for this.
Salim Mar 08, 2021 02:41pm
What can you expect from those who has one track mind.
MG Mar 08, 2021 02:41pm
There are numerous female achievers in Pakistan starting from Ms Fathima Jinna to Malala and counting. Why minister took the weird root?
Teddy Mar 08, 2021 02:43pm
Womens day in pakistan is a joke
M. Emad Mar 08, 2021 03:09pm
Wish 'Happy Women's Day' to Pakistan PM Imran Khan Niazi.
Shahzaib Mar 08, 2021 03:48pm
Your Article seems like Criticism for the mere sake of Criticism
SSA Mar 08, 2021 04:09pm
Lets get one thing straight, it seem the women are getting more and more confused in this modern age, let it be clear that its not all about women; the rest 50% of humanity is MEN, In 90% of the world it's still men who go out make a living and supporting many of their household, they sacrifice so much for others including mostly women, they are the ones who die early worn out from the lifetime of hard work and worries of family life. Dreaming is fine but the reality is hard and it is men who are still the noble ones, that is the real human condition; Aurat marches or no Aurat marches.
Zia Taqdees Mar 08, 2021 04:14pm
Their yesterday's attitude towards women reflect their empty wish on women's day
SRK Mar 08, 2021 04:24pm
PMIK also has great respect for his opponents as he describes them as equivalent to women
Real issue Mar 08, 2021 05:34pm
PTI team are funny people.
Mudassir Hussain Azeemabadi Mar 08, 2021 05:45pm
Taking the Trolls by the horns
Marquis de Sade Mar 08, 2021 06:01pm
Who better qualified than a thrice divorced man?
haris Mar 08, 2021 06:16pm
@Fastrack He is waiting for the right moment to expose the names of his late wife. Not sure, what that right moment is and if it comes before the Day of Judgement or not.
Sayyar Khan Mar 08, 2021 07:25pm
That’s what the 10 Million $$$ aid is from USA. I doubt a penny even goes to gender inequality.
John Mar 08, 2021 07:46pm
IK should celebrate women's day after all he was married 3 times
Picacho Mar 08, 2021 07:55pm
Is this chap a doctor? Seems rather uneducated and speaks as a court jester
Nooruddin Mar 08, 2021 08:08pm
No need to drag Imran Khan into everything. This goes for both PTI leaders and Dawn.
TZaman Mar 08, 2021 09:08pm
Great article.
It's me Mar 08, 2021 09:56pm
Imran Khan didn't build the SKH using his own money. It was utilizing the people's money and contributions and people should've had the control but he conned them and now his family controls it and makes big bucks while helping the poor. A win win situation.
It's me Mar 08, 2021 09:58pm
@Chrís Dăn Yes they have raised awareness on this day but have contributed to and clarified the concept of TC to the highest degree. This might lead to MC and a better usage of the new term in future.
Zainab Mar 08, 2021 10:38pm
@AK Why is it wrong to celebrate men who have contributed to the betterment of the society in particular and the country in general?They are also part of the equation.
hussain Mar 09, 2021 01:18am
what would the liberals for the rest of us to do? women's day, fathers day, mothers day, child day etc it's not some random day set by western societies and then copied blindly by the chav Pakistani liberals. better healthcare, education, inheritance rights, basic protection under the law etc in accordance with our ideals not.those promulgated by slave liberals.
Shehz Mar 09, 2021 02:04am
@Shahzaib and rightly so. It's about women's day, and that is what it is and should be about; don't attempt to turn, twist, or make it about anything other than a "woman's" struggles and achievements.
Tariq K. Sami, MD. Mar 09, 2021 03:06am
The slain architect Parveen Rahman.
Zulfiqar Mar 09, 2021 04:05am
Since when did he became Doctor?
Zulfiqar Mar 09, 2021 04:07am
@Marquis de Sade is that a crime or a sin which only you’re aware of?
K Shah Mar 09, 2021 07:28am
@Fastrack because women want to remain apolitical n focus on their issues only ... n that's a good strategy ...
Kahkashan Naz Syed Mar 09, 2021 10:53am
mere criticism