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Thursday, April 15, 2021

‘Onus is on men’: Pakistan PM Imran Khan’s ex-wife Jemima, others hit back after rape comment

British filmmaker Jemima Goldsmith, who was married to Khan from 1995 to 2004, said that the Imran she knew used to say "put a veil on the man’s eyes not on the woman".

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
April 8, 2021 12:20:13 pm
Imran Khan's ex-wife Jemima Goldsmith hit out at him over his remarks. (Photo: Express Archive)

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has been on the receiving end over his controversial comments that sexual violence was a product of ‘obscenity’, which he described as a Western import.

Khan blamed “fahashi” (vulgarity) for the rise of rape and sexual violence in the country. Khan also spoke of religion and the concept of ‘purdah’ in Islam. It is to remove “temptation” from society because “not everyone has willpower”, he had said.

His comments drew sharp reactions from rights campaigners as well as British filmmaker Jemima Goldsmith, who was married to Khan from 1995 to 2004. “Say to the believing men that they restrain their eyes and guard their private parts: Quran 24:31. The onus is on men,” she wrote on Twitter. Goldsmith added, “I’m hoping this is a misquote/mistranslation. The Imran I knew used to say, ‘Put a veil on the man’s eyes not on the woman’.”

Her tweet has been shared by thousands who, too, condemned the Pakistan PM’s statements.

Pakistan rights campaigners have accused Prime Minister Imran Khan of “baffling ignorance”.

Hundreds have signed a statement circulating online on Wednesday calling Khan’s comments “factually incorrect, insensitive and dangerous”.

“Fault rests solely with the rapist and the system that enables the rapist, including a culture fostered by statements such as those made by (Khan),” the statement read.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, an independent rights watchdog, said on Tuesday that it was “appalled” by the comments.

“Not only does this betray a baffling ignorance of where, why and how rape occurs, but it also lays the blame on rape survivors, who, as the government must know, can range from young children to victims of honour crimes,” it said.

Khan also said that similar things are happening in India after the film industry started taking inspiration from Hollywood. “Delhi has now become a rape capital,” he added.

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