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No Spoilers: Mohammed Hanif Clears The Air Around ‘Zindagi Tamasha’

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Author Mohammed Hanif has written an article to clarify any doubts about the Sarmad Khoosat film Zindagi Tamasha.

Writing for Samaa, he has laid to rest a number of misconceptions and rumours that were circulating on social media and by word of mouth.

Among other things, he sets aside the claims by a religious political party that the film makes fun of Islamic teachings or ulema. He points out that film was cleared twice by Pakistani censor boards, and that its main protagonist is himself a religious, bearded man. In his view, the film actually humanizes such a religious man.

Hanif also lays out the larger political context for the uproar over the impending release of the film by a religious-political party in the country, the TLP. The director, according to him, has removed every scene which was indicated to him as being remotely likely to anger religious conservatives. In Hanif’s assessment, what drives the TLP’s rage is its own situation in the aftermath of its unsuccessful agitation in the case of Aasia Bibi’s acquittal. Finding itself in hot water with the state since it called for violence against the highest security and judicial authorities of the country, the current agitation over Zindagi Tamasha is an attempt to regain political relevance by taking advantage of people’s religion-related emotions.

He also responds to some of the aspersions being cast on director Sarmad Khoosat by opponents of the film being released. The common claim that it is “foreign-funded” is dismissed by Hanif. He explains that the film is funded by Khoosat himself, at great personal cost.

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Moreover, Mohammed Hanif’s article contains no spoilers on the plot of the film.

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