Various women's rights groups have objected to the awarding of the civil award to singer Ali Zafar and demanded that the decision be reconsidered and withdrawn.
It may be recalled that the President had announced civil awards for 184 national and foreign personalities on the occasion of 'Independence Day' on August 14 this year. Will be awarded.
This year, the President has awarded Sitara-e-Shujaat for 24 personalities, Sitara-e-Imtiaz for 27, Tamgha-e-Shujaat for 23, Tamgha-e-Imtiaz for 46, Nishan-e-Imtiaz for 7, Hilal-e-Imtiaz for 2, Hilal-e-Quaid-e-Azam for one. Sitara-e-Pakistan for 2, Sitara-e-Quaid-e-Azam for 6, Sitara-e-Khidmat for one, Pakistan Medal for one, Quaid-e-Azam Medal for one and Presidential Medal of Excellence for 44 personalities were announced.
The Medal of Excellence is a civic award by the Government of Pakistan which is given once a year to those who have excelled in literature, arts, sports, medicine, science, and other fields in Pakistan. Among those nominated for the award is singer Ali Zafar. Ali Zafar also expressed happiness over the nomination for the Presidential Medal of Excellence by the Government of Pakistan and termed the nomination as a great honor.
Deeply honoured to be awarded with the “Pride of Performance” award by by the Govt of Pakistan. I bow down in humility & gratitude to God, forever indebted to my fans and supporters. 🇵🇰❤️💫 #PakistanZindabaad #PakistanIndependenceDay pic.twitter.com/rV1wx3BZCl— Ali Zafar (@AliZafarsays) August 14, 2020
A few days later, actress Effat Omar tweeted a critical tweet about the Civil Awards nomination but did not name anyone. Effat Omar wrote that only in Pakistan is it possible for an award to be given by the government to a person allegedly involved in the harassment.
Only in Pakistan an alleged Harraser gets an award backed by the Govt.Nowhere else in 21st cen. #PakistanZindabad— Iffat Omar Official (@OmarIffat) August 16, 2020
She did not specify in her tweet who she was referring to, but people speculated that Effat Omar was talking about singer Ali Zafar.
Feminists across Pakistan condemn the recent decision to award the Pride of Performance to Ali Zafar; an alleged harasser.— Aurat Azadi March Islamabad (@AuratAzadiMarch) August 19, 2020
We urge the state to reconsider this year's selection pic.twitter.com/d9u4F991Oc
It was further said that everyone is innocent till found guilty but an appeal against Ali Zafar regarding harassment is pending in the Supreme Court and a defamation case is pending in the Additional District Court Lahore while the award was given. The time to leave is very disturbing and insensitive.