The organizers of ‘Aurat March’ claimed to have received extensive threats of dire consequences including rape on social media after they put up promotional posters for next year’s Aurat march.
The organizers had put up the posters to mobilize the potential participants of the march-women, transgenders, gender fluid, gender non-binary group and other marginalized groups.
ARE YOU READY? Aurat March 2020 is here! If you are a woman or a member of a sexual or gender minority who wants to shake up the patriarchy and raise their voice for injustice, come join us to help organise one of the biggest feminist demonstrations to take place within the city. pic.twitter.com/eqUwqbgwRZ
— Aurat March – عورت مارچ (@AuratMarchKHI) November 26, 2019
The posters had a passionate message of shaking up ‘patriarchy and raise their voice for injustice’ inscribed on it.
‘Aurat March’ organizers are bracing up to hold the country’s biggest feminist demonstration next year on March 8th, the International Women’s Day.
The organizers, however, claimed that the posters attracted a broad array of reactions on social media; most of them sexist and vile. The intensely insensitive and obnoxious comments by men outpoured on the Aurat March’s social media posts.
Read more: Aurat March: What went wrong!
“The troll army consisted mostly of misogynist, sexist men who made rape, death and various attack threats towards the organizing committee of the Aurat March 2020 and to the women joining the organizing team,” said an unnamed organizer to a local media outlet in the interview.
The jarring comments of men varied from assaulting the participants with acids to subjecting them to gang rapes.
Two men named, Rubeel Khan and Kamran Ali caught the attention on social media for their vile threats, which prompted calls on social media to report them to Federal Investigative Agency and Facebook for issuing rape threats.
“The troll army consisted mostly of misogynist, sexist men who made rape, death and various attack threats towards the organizing committee of the Aurat March 2020 and to the women joining the organizing team,”
Followed by the online dissension, the two men immediately deactivated their accounts. They later came with apologetic statements on social media; Rubeel professed that he is a humane person while Kamran Ali claimed that his account was hacked and someone else made those obnoxious threats from his account. Ali added that since then he has been receiving death threats on social media and he will contact FIA for the matter.
Meanwhile, the organizers claimed that the highly polarized reactions to the Aurat March posters levels to the fact that there is still much needed to be done to give women safe, equal and just place in the society.
#AuratMarch2020's inclusive meeting focused on "how to tackle systematic & institutional patriarchy, work on implementation of laws pertaining to GBV, reproductive rights, & sexual harassment, & create mental health support for survivors".
I report: https://t.co/hFYq71S4xa
— Haseem • हसीम • حسیم | #BasicIncomeNow (@haseemuzzaman) November 27, 2019
The Aurat March intends to tackle deeply embedded misogynistic mindset that hampers women’s progress in various ways in day-to-day life.
The country witnessed its formal women’s’ rights march-Aurat March, this year in March. The rallies were held across the country in which enthusiastic women holding placards with different messages thronged the streets. The placard manifested their concerns and aspiration being a member of society.
Read more: Aurat March placards attract criticism
By openly displaying their aspirations these women dared to take a step ahead in creating the environment that is traditionally, culturally and morally less binding upon them and releasing them from the repressive norms.
Where the rally attracted scores of women from various walks of life to join the platform, it also garnered massive criticism on social media for displaying some of the offensive messages.
The women despite societal backlash are tenacious to participate passionately in the next year’s feminist demonstrations.