2016: Moments when Pakistani social media vigilantes go wild
The year ‘2016’ has been an eventful one for the Pakistanis, to say the least.
Be it Adnan Sami’s ‘treachery’ (as some call it) or Shafqat Amanat Ali’s infamous fumble while singing Pakistan’s national anthem in India– all these moments had a spillover outrage on the social media and vigilantes in its wake were quick to pour scorn on the ‘offenders’.
Here we will look at some of the happenings and incidents that invited rage of Pakistanis and their reactions making news headlines and social media trends.
Adnan Sami and his love affair with India
Most of the Pakistanis were pondering over their New Year resolution when Adnan Sami actually gave them one on the first day of the 2016– i.e: Don’t spare your opponent.
Indian government granted him citizenship on December 31, 2015 and the singer showered praise on the country, sparking fury and an outrage among the people in Pakistan.
Sami had first reached India on March 13th, 2001 on a visit visa which was valid upto a year. The visa was being extended from time to time. He requested the Indian government to allow him to stay in the country on humanitarian grounds after his Pakistani passport expired on 26th May, 2015. The government of Pakistan had refused to renew the singer’s contract.
People reacted strongly to his statement in which he described the development as “life-changing” and “historic”, adding that “it was the biggest gift on the first day of the new year”.
Adnan also said that he has always felt like he belonged to India, living there for 16 years. He could’ve gotten any country’s citizenship, but he chose India because he felt at home in the country.
Shafqat Amanat Ali and the national anthem slip
Pakistanis were recovering from anguish after team’s defeat at the hands of India in the World T20 when, in the meanwhile, they actually noticed that Shafqat Amanat Ali had a wrong rendition of the national anthem.
Pakistan fans were quick to react on Amanat’s fumbling and ‘wrong’ rendition on at least two points when he was singing it.
That almost boiled blood of Pakistanis who were passing through a brief spell of ‘national mourning’ immediately after the sentiments bruising defeat.
Iqrar handcuffed for exposing ‘poor security’ at Sindh Assembly
Iqrarul Hasan, the host of popular program Sar-e-Aam, faced the wrath of government bigwigs after he exposed rather poor security of the Sindh Assembly during a sting operation.
The anchor was soon arrested on orders of Sindh Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal, but was released on bail a day later.
Hasan, without revealing his identity, entered the assembly premises along with one of the crew members carrying a firearm. None of the security guards bothered to check Hasan or any other visitors entering the premises.
During the assembly session, Iqrar drew attention of the legislators and flashed pistol to expose poor security cover of the legislature. And it followed intense debate on the social media.
Citizen-cop brawl that divided the public
A video of brawl between a citizen and a traffic cop became social media sensation, and digital warriors split up in their ‘online courts’.
The footage however sparked fury at first and most of the viewers hurled barbs at the cop for beating up the ‘innocent’ citizen. But it later emerged that it was actually Shafiq, the citizen, who reacted impulsively to a flag-down signal from traffic cop. Shafiq, once took to thrashing, stopped only when a number of other cops overpowered him.
Still, a large number of citizens stood behind him, perhaps due to the tainted image of the traffic police here.
Watch the complete video here:
Amjad Sabri’s shocking end
On fateful evening of June 22, gunmen shot dead an acclaimed Pakistani singer Amjad Sabri in one the busiest areas of Karachi. The incident sparked wave of mourning and rage among the citizens.
Some incensed denizens even went on to question the efficacy of law enforcement agencies-led targeted operation in Karachi, when armed miscreants could target anyone in a broad daylight.
Amjad Sabri, 45, was one of South Asia’s most popular singers of the ‘qawwali’, Sufi devotional music that dates back over 700 years.
Moments after the tragic news came to light, Twitterati was filled with outrage of shock and anger. It was a state of mourning, but some tweeps didn’t move on without questioning the effectiveness of the anti-terror operation in the metropolis.
The (un)lawful thrashing of motorway cops
National Highway and Motorway police cops made it to the news headlines in September for an unexpected reason. The patrolling officials had intercepted two cars on September 10, 2016 which were being driven recklessly. Instead of cooperating with the NH&MP officials, the drivers became “rash and flared up”. One of the drivers, later identified as an army officer, also reportedly pointed his pistol at motorway officers.
The incident actually came into light through social media when couple of senior journalists shared picture of security personnel beating up motorway officials.
It was then the news spread like a wildfire and finally flashed on TV channels, making people voicing support for the motorway cops. We’re not sure whether the cops could have managed to find some space on TV channels sans social media support.