Adnan Siddiqui comparing women to flies was bad, his non-apology is worse

Adnan Siddiqui comparing women to flies was bad, his non-apology is worse

A genuine apology would involve not only acknowledging the damage done but also, actually apologising.
Updated 06 Apr, 2024

After drawing heavy criticism for comparing women to flies, Adnan Siddiqui has said he “regrets” any unintended offence his words may have caused, because they were intended to be “humorous”.

Taking to his Instagram stories amid a social media storm on Friday, Siddiqui wrote, “I’d like to address the recent comments I made, which were intended to be humorous and not to cause offence. Metaphors like ‘slippery as a snake’ are often used in language. However, I understand how my words may have been misconstrued.”

“I regret any unintended offence. Moving forward, I’ll ensure my words are conveyed with greater clarity and sensitivity,” he added.

While the Meray Paas Tum Ho star’s demeaning analogy and subsequent acknowledgement of the offence caused may not be ill-intentional, both are equally damaging — especially since they set a dangerous precedent and reinforce harmful stereotypes.

Here’s a recap of what happened: During Nida Yasir’s Ramazan show Shan-e-Suhoor, a fly buzzed around Siddiqui and Yasir, and the latter jokingly suggested that the insect might be drawn to Siddiqui’s sweetness. However, Siddiqui’s response took a regrettable turn when he metaphorically equated women to flies. Despite Yasir’s attempts to divert the conversation, Siddiqui continued, asserting that women, like flies, tend to avoid men when chased but come running back when left alone.

While Siddiqui didn’t exactly compare women to inanimate objects, he compared them to flies — not sure which is worse — and he did so on live television, that too, unprompted, his statement expressing “regret” doesn’t exactly make things better. In fact, it puts the onus on viewers for having a limited understanding of “metaphors” or for being unable to take a joke. When in reality, what Siddiqui said was neither funny nor can it be passed off as a metaphor.

It also leaves little room to be misconstrued. While metaphors like “slippery as a snake” are commonly used and understood, drawing comparisons between women and inanimate objects or insects, for that matter, not only strips them of their agency but also reduces them to objects of desire.

Throughout history, women have been subjected to objectification through language and imagery, often likened to objects such as lollipops to coerce them into conforming to societal expectations of ‘chastity’.

In addition to addressing the problematic nature of Siddiqui’s analogy, it’s essential to also criticise his response to the backlash, particularly his attempt to frame it as a misunderstanding on the part of the audience. His post downplays the severity of his comments by attributing any offence taken to a misinterpretation of his intentions.

It also fails to acknowledge the inherent offensiveness and objectification embedded in his remarks. By shifting the blame onto the audience for supposedly misconstruing his words, Siddiqui sidesteps accountability. The idea that his comments were merely intended as humour does not absolve him of responsibility.

Furthermore, his assertion that his remarks were intended to be humorous overlooks the broader context in which they were made.

Siddiqui’s acknowledgement of the offence caused and promise to be more sensitive in the future is a step in the right direction albeit a genuine apology would involve not only acknowledging the damage done but also, actually apologising. Highlighting why such comparisons should not be made in the future and especially as jokes, would be a plus.

Moving forward, it is crucial for public figures like Siddiqui to recognise their influence and responsibility in shaping societal attitudes. While humour has its place in conversation and pop culture, it should never come at the expense of demeaning or objectifying others.


Taj Ahmad Apr 06, 2024 02:04pm
Adnan Siddiqui is a jolly guy, no one should mind if he jokes on stage or with friends.
Annoyed Apr 06, 2024 03:08pm
Intellectually dishonest and insensitive apology by AS - hiding behind a crass sense of humor. Thanks to the writer of this article for clearly articulating the sense of violation of so many women.
Syed Hasni Apr 06, 2024 04:37pm
The lines he spoke seems to be written by Khalilur Rehman Qamar, This is not our culture, we believe in, وجود زن سے ہے تصویر کائنات میں رنگ اسی کے ساز سے ہے زندگی کا سوز دروں The picture that this world presents from woman, gets its Tints and Scents: She is the Lyre that can impart pathos and warmth to human heart. - Allama Iqbal I forgive him since he is just an Actor, but being a father of a daughter he should be careful what he says in public, and also man is known by the company he keeps.
Yaseen Apr 06, 2024 04:44pm
AS is also a product of this misogynistic society, hard to expect him to be any better.
Jamil Soomro, New York City Apr 06, 2024 04:47pm
" I'll ensure my words are conveyed with greater clarity and sensitivity." What a bogus statement. What a shameful comment by someone who is perceived to be educated.?
Hasan khan Apr 06, 2024 05:09pm
I think people are overreacting to AS comment. It was truly said in a humorous way.
parvez Apr 06, 2024 05:16pm
its just a metaphor.dont take it too seriously
Ishrat Hyatt Apr 06, 2024 05:44pm
Well said! Shame on Siddiqui
Asif Apr 06, 2024 06:01pm
His comments are pathetic. What's more worrying is that a large section of society do not find the comments offensive.
Dr Abdul Malik Apr 06, 2024 06:49pm
Would his ugly utterance include his mom, his sisters, his daughters?
Ehsan Apr 06, 2024 06:53pm
Pakistani society needs to do a better job educating men and women how to behave with each other, they do well when interacting with non Pakistani men and women
MD Apr 06, 2024 07:12pm
Bardasht tau is tabk main khatam hi ho gayi hai. Chote se choti cheez offensive ho jaati. When the metaphor is used men are like dogs, do men rise up in arms? No! They know it’s not targeting all men and they know to an extent it’s not completely false. There is a case to be argued that yes sometimes men are like dogs. But this new age drama that all of us have inspired to become, it’s unbecoming and pathetic.
BeTolerant Apr 06, 2024 08:48pm
@Annoyed. There is no disagreement that he was not politically correct, but there are more serious issues women go through than "crass sense of humor".
mina salem Apr 07, 2024 02:40am
Great analysis
Salazar Apr 07, 2024 04:29am
This is good to read. Yes, people need to be educated, people need to understand women are human just like men and you can't degrade them or reduce them to objects or insects. Let's hope this article is read by a lot of men so they can maybe learn something better.
Naveed Apr 07, 2024 05:08am
Adnan apologize profoundly and publicly because you are a celebrity and your unintended an unintentional comments matter.
Kashif Apr 07, 2024 05:09am
I am surprised as I expected better from him. Shows the mindset of educated men in Pakistan. Shameful.
Aftab Faizy Haider Apr 07, 2024 02:31pm
Actors who try to be philosophers, should avoid "philosophical" statements....keep it simple and say less, but say it after giving due thought.
Taj Ahmad Apr 07, 2024 02:37pm
Adnan Siddiqui knows, how to stay in the news all year around by giving out chilly remarks on any subject on social media, but after all he mostly jokes on social media nothing seriously.
kerala Apr 07, 2024 02:42pm
if you're gonna say dumb sh*t like this on public television except to be disinvited next time. no but really he should be disinvited from future talk show appearances, ladies it's time to speak the h*ll up...
Pnpuri Apr 07, 2024 07:07pm
Badnaam hue tau kya nam tau ho ga. create controversy to get publicity
Adnan Apr 07, 2024 11:20pm
Would he like others to use this "metaphor" for his daughters?
BEAUTIFUL Apr 08, 2024 02:48am
The whole Twitter war is to make him more famous.
Ron Apr 08, 2024 04:06am
This is the real face of Siddiqui..(Don't even want to call him by his first name),,,,and I would urge all FEMALE STARS to refuse work opposite/along Siddiqui, this will make him apologies too in his next post. If any female stars still accepts the work along him then she is a endorsing his claims
NYS Apr 08, 2024 05:29am
To Add a stir simply...
Nadeem Shah USA Apr 08, 2024 06:18am
His biggest highlight of his career was working with jolie in a small role, they never invited him back.
Syed Hasni Apr 08, 2024 02:18pm
وجود زن سے ہے تصویر کائنات میں رنگ اسی کے ساز سے ہے زندگی کا سوز دروں The picture that this world presents from woman gets its tints and scents: She is the lyre that can impart pathos and warmth to human heart. Allama Iqbal His sentiment is not representative of the Pakistani society.
Tariq Islam Apr 08, 2024 03:02pm
Get over with it! Its a metaphor