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Mukhtaran Mai’s Blog

Posted on September 8, 2006
Filed Under >Bilal Zuberi, Law & Justice, People, Women
55 Comments
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Bilal Zuberi

Mukhtaran Mai is a name familiar to most Pakistanis. In 2002, she was raped by 4 men from a rival tribe as per the decision of local elders in a tribal jirga. The story of the jirga decision is a fascinating tale itself in how our judicial and extra-judicial systems sometimes work in rural Pakistan.

While many women quietly suffer an ill fate at the hands of such tribal decisions, and sometimes committ suicide from the ‘shame’, Mukhtaran Mai fought back. Her prepetrators of the crime were tried in the anti-terrorism courts and death sentences were handed down to the guilty. Since then, the judicial process has taken the case back and forth and most recently the Supreme Court has decided in her favor.

Mukhtaran Mai has become a symbol of resistance and hope for women in Pakistan, and all over the muslim world. In addition to fighting the case in courts, she has become a movement for bringing education to her village, and attention to the broader issue of women’s rights in Pakistan. She buillt the first two schools in her local village of Meerwala, in Southern Punjab and now campaigns internationally.

But now one can read a weekly blog by Mukhataran Mai, her own own internet diary about her life, her village, and the work she is doing internationally to promote women’s causes. Her blog is in urdu and is hosted by the BBC Urdu service. Since Mukhataran cannot read or write, she tells her stories to a local BBC journalist, who types it up as a web diary.



About her blog, she says:

“Mostly I talk about incidents which are cruel and painful. I try to discuss only the most serious things in my blog: the poor treatment of women, sometimes leading to killing,” she says.

“I sometimes talk about my childhood memories – events that take place at my schools; or perhaps just about the household chores.”

“I don’t think that the people in our village know what it’s all about and what I am writing. But I’ve received a few e-mails from other places – people who have reading my blog on line and who encourage me to continue.”

Mukhataran Mai’s presence on the web, in the form of a blog, is a wonderful reminder of how digital access can open doors for a better communication between people lwho otherwise may never meet each other. Mukhataran’s audience is global, and while most support her cause, not all people agree with the path she has chosen; some may not even sympathize with her. But at least a healthy discussion is happening where a village woman can be a party to share her thoughts and opinions. Even about the naysayers, she says:

“It’s their kindness that they read the material. I am grateful to them. They encourage me to continue in my work in the village, and for women everywhere in Pakistan.”

55 comments posted

Comment Pages: [7] 6 5 4 3 2 1 » Show All

  1. readinglord says:
    May 7th, 2011 8:10 am

    @nazir

    Don’t be so blinded by your feminism, please. Just read the judgment of the SC. It is all a media-cum-NGO fraud of the century when actually never did the panchayat order the rape nor did it actually occur. Just note the most active person in spinning this fraud was the mullah, Razaq, who was not present in the Panchayat, but the man who was the most concerned and was present during the event, father of Mai, did not appear as a witness. And what a timing of reporting the case; only when Khaliq’s sister was married to somebody else than the brother of Mai, as decided in an akath, in exchange for the marriage of Mai to the Mastoi accused, Khaliq.

    It was apparantly just Khaliq’s naive truthfulness that he performed rightful sex with Mai as his wife that made him suffer conviction and sentence, otherwise there was nothing to prove it. But Mai took undue advantage of it and denied to have an honorable sex with Khaliq as his wife, which actually was perhaps the fact and insisted on claiming it as a rape, evidently with the objective of avenging a tribal vendetta, accompanied luckily by the fame and the rain of dollars, the envy of many a woman.

    What a media-cum-NGO fraud it was!

    We read the story in Quran of Yusuf (ASM) who was sentenced to 17 years imprisonment as a result of a false allegation of attempt of rape against him by a woman named Zulekha. Mai has an edge on her as she made more than a dozen Mastois serve incarceration for over nine years by a totally false allegation.

    We can rightly call the Islamic Republic of Pakistan as ‘Zanaana Republic of Pakistan’ now wherein justice is only the zinaana justice.

    It was God which proved the innocence of Yusuf but who would prove the innocence of Mastois now when even SC has failed to convince the zanaan-e-Pakistan and their ‘Zankha’ supporters to do that and God, the Mullah say, has stopped all communication with the man even now.

  2. nazir says:
    April 24th, 2011 5:53 pm

    Why is Pakistan so fond of medieval practices? Why don’t you move towards modernity with a book of law? Scientific and logical approach is what is needed—well, I know, you have a few people. Sit and think together for development and peace, which is acceptable to all Pakistanis. Right now you all are so engrossed in exporting Islamic terrorist and representing yourself a power house of them. In the name Allah, you do everything that is irreligious—to your people and to the world. Nothing is more sacred more than the life of a human being. There is no such thing as sin, it’s all about perception. Law has to be objective and realistic. How can a band of morons—untouched and unaware of the modern world— pronounce a woman to be raped by a gang and called it justice. What if the same happens to their wives and daughters? Will they still call it justice? It is an attempt to ruin a woman on whom they could not lay their hands upon. It is a sadistic and barbarous—the very definition of medieval perverted Muslim man. Law and justice cannot be defined in terms of regional and religious terms; they are universal and applicable to the whole world.

  3. March 31st, 2011 1:53 pm

    I HATE THOSE WHO HATE WOMEN I SALUTE BRAVE LADIES .GIVE WOMEN RIGHTS .

  4. Amy says:
    January 31st, 2011 3:42 am

    Does anyone know where I can get a DVD of the film “Shame”? I know Georgetown screened it, but their librarians say that they don’t have it in the library, and I don’t know who else at Georgetown to ask. I can’t find it anywhere online, and I’m supposed to be putting on a screening of it at Hampshire College on March 4th. If anyone has any info or a copy they’d be willing to sell, please e-mail me at ark09@hampshire.edu. Thanks!

  5. readinglord says:
    May 24th, 2009 8:07 pm

    How Mai’s case in Supreme court stands now? Can any body tell me? Mai herself seems to have lost interest in her case after her marriage with Gabol. But what about the accused poor Mastoies still languishing in the jail perhaps who could not be bailed out even? What a justice it is? Where are the NGOs, the media and the satanic Kristofer? Should we wait for the Taliban to come and provide justice to the male gender? Isn’t it shameful for the CJ also who capped this case with his suo motu martial law?

  6. readinglord says:
    March 21st, 2009 7:33 pm

    My point is that the world at large, especially the West and the urban media, cannot understand the rural tribal culture under feudal set-up in Punjab. Just see Mai

  7. Enver says:
    March 18th, 2009 3:00 pm

    Congratulations to Mukhtar Mai on her marriage.

    She deserves happiness after all she has been through. I hope people will not drag her through teh mud again on this. That woudl be petty.

Comment Pages: [7] 6 5 4 3 2 1 » Show All



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