The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has fined Neo News Rs. 200,000 for airing “insensitive, and derogatory remarks by cricketer Abdul Razzaq and others against Pakistan women’s cricket team player Nida Dar.
During the program ‘G Sarkar with Nauman Ijaz’ on 6 June, Razzaq had commented that the woman cricketer looked more like a man than a woman. The viral clip had caught the ire of social media.
On the issue, tennis player Aisamul Haq Qureshi had filed a complaint with PEMRA through Barrister Khadija Siddiqi, seeking action against the news channel.
The regulatory body issued a verdict on the complaint on Thursday. The complaint received by the PEMRA said the host of the show also “degrades and shames the career adopted by female cricketers, expressly stating that female cricketers mostly leave cricket when they get married.”
The regulator’s Council of the Complaints observed that the comment on women leaving cricket after marriage was a generalization that “leads to blatant discrimination against the female gender.”
It said that the former cricketer’s comments implied that “cricket is only meant for boys, who define the masculine nature of the sport.”
The order also mentioned the comment made by the female host of the show, asking Nida Dar whether the female cricketers could sport long hair.
“The female host is insinuating that short hair is too masculine and that women cricketers are somewhat an anomaly,” the council said.
The body also objected to the comments made by the male host and actor Nauman Ijaz who had asked why the game could not be played in a three-piece suite.
“This attitude demonstrates how widely accepted the belief is that men are more entitled to behave misogynistically than women are entitled not to be treated hatefully,” it said.
The order added that the women deserved to be treated with respect and that the gender-specific attacks should be taken seriously.