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Arts and Culture Citizen Voices Education

The angry kid

Pakistan’s media industry has been growing rapidly, with good talented people capturing its face. However, in recent years, the morning shows have made quite an impact and created a hype more than Pakistani dramas. Dolled up hosts, hosting weddings, dancing competitions, make-up tutorials and introducing fresh talent in the market that gain fame through social media. Just like the ‘Chai Walla’ who stole many hearts and landed in showbiz, ARY’s show Good Morning Pakistan introduced a Pathan kid Muhammad Ahmed Shah on October 23, 2018. Apparently, the kid is talented and caught the attention of many viewers by his videos that went viral on social media. People fell in love with Shah’s furious style of saying ‘OYE’ and “Ye Mera Basta Hai”, turning the 4 maybe 5-year old into a social media celebrity overnight.

It may seem funny and cute at the same time that a kid is acting and copying some Punjabi hero, but posting such videos online and the media itself making a hype of such new faces is not only damaging their individuality but also making a mockery out of their lives and promoting absurd, silly and indecent content. The media industry has a big range of followers, making celebrities like Nida Yasir and others representatives and role models of the very society they build every day through their ideas and show concepts.

Shah’s videos are cute, no doubt about that! But behind his cute face and furious accent, the media completely ignored what message is it passing on to the daily viewers… shouting, arguing and misbehaving with elders? Hosts making fun of Ahmed, calling him “gol matol” which is actually taken as body shaming, but not in Pakistan, where it is taken as a measure of joking and a reason for laughter.

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It is worth pondering, that the videos of Shah, or any other overnight celebrity bring about a new phase of fame and money in their lives. But such phases that last for a while play a vital role in shaping their mental, physical and emotional growth and most importantly their personality. For example, the Chai Walla who rose to fame and publicity from within Pakistan and abroad as well belonged from a conservative family and was exposed to a whole new world of entertainment, glamour and liberal views. He was picked up, chosen and taken in by an industry that picks people and leaves them after the hype is over. Some cope well, some don’t, and along the way, many go astray and lose themselves in their lost identity.

Question is will you allow or appreciate your own kids or grandchildren behaving like Ahmed? Will you promote ill-mannered behaviour? Like people laughing and making jokes on your kids?

These views might not be the views of the masses since viewers will only see what they find silly and funny, Media will show what gains popularity and increases ratings. However, new faces that are often labelled as fresh talent are taken advantage of by both, media industry and the viewers and then forgotten.

Ahmed, who is too naive to understand or judge what’s wrong or right, is merely a centre of attention till the viewers are laughing and enjoying. After that, he will be left like an orphan, to cope with the lost fame and an attitude which is now being appreciated only to be slandered tomorrow. This is indeed a sad state of affairs, how our society is growing, what it’s passing on to the youth and its people is alarming.

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Instead of inviting intellectual people who talk about knowledge, education, books, mannerism and positivity our nation is lost in the melodies of distasteful music, wedding dresses the  majority cannot afford, make-up tutorials that only focus on outer, deceptive and fake beauty and all the silliness of the world that can distract them from the more serious matters at hand.

Ahmed’s video, his actions alone aren’t worth criticising, its the media hosts who should be blamed and criticised for agreeing to such scripts that promote vulgarity, indecency, ill-mannered behaviour and making a mockery of its own people, for it is a society of fools leading bigger fools for their own foolish morning shows. A society seldom progresses by following such paths, far from intellect closer only to a world of silliness.

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Anum Mohsin

The author is an IR graduate and is an aspiring journalist.

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