A lecturer named Muhammad Afzal of Government M.A.O College in Lahore has committed suicide after he was accused of false harassment charges. The lecturer’s formal letter written to the professor of college and inquiry officer, Alia Rehman, along with his suicide note is heavily circulating on social media. His suicide note and a formal letter have ignited fury among the netizens.
There need to be a counter punishment for such cases, not all women are innocent, this #Metoo thing has became a propoganda rather than a compaign
This is so heart wrenching 💔,one has to commit suicide to prove himself innocent, the false allegations will have to pay heavy 1 day https://t.co/HPsHLbHbCp
— Cobalamin⁷ (@mucanders) October 19, 2019
The victim had explained the ordeal of facing false harassment charges in the letter. Muhammad Afzal moaned that the false harassment accusation has tarnished his image, ruined his career, and disturbed his family life. His wife had left him following the allegations, leaving him devastated.
He requested the inquiry officer Alia Rehman to rusticate the student of Mass Communication department, who had levelled false allegations on him. Since he was cleared in the inquiry and awaits justice. He demanded the management to take actions, which will restore his image in the college.
If something happens to him, he requested the college management to give his salary to his mother and a Good Will certificate honouring him, clearing the disgrace brought to his name following the false allegations. He had written the letter to exonerate him from the charges on 8th October while he committed suicide on 9th October.
The lecturer in his suicide note asserted that he is leaving the matter to Allah and asked police not to investigate the matter further.
The deceased has left the matter in court of Allah and returned to him at the same time
— Ali Haider (@AliHaider_PAK) October 19, 2019
The letter of Muhammad Afzal incited an outcry on social media, forcing them to question the merits of Me Too campaign- a campaign initiated to save women from sexual harassment, encouraging women to name the harassers publicly.
The case of Muhammad Afzal has concluded to be false, amounting to the misuse of Me Too campaign, annihilating the life of lecturer, decried social media. The social media users argued that men, who are sexual predators, are punished for their misconduct but women, who level false allegations and destroy the honour of upright men must be equally punished.
Several social media users asserted that they have heard cases where men have been falsely accused of sexual misconduct, however, no action had been taken against women levelling these charges.
So sad & traumatic incident! Another victim of #MeToo movement with false allegations from opportunistic & criminal mindsets. #Metoo is based on injustice & prejudice under falseflag slogans of antiman, anti-patriarchy & profeminist. It's not for providing justice to its victims! https://t.co/I815dDzhd3
— النَّجْمُ الثَّاقِب (@AnNajamUsSaqib) October 19, 2019
The Merits of Me Too Campaign
Me Too campaign has provided the platform for many of the abused women, enabling them to raise their voice and call out the offenders. An effective campaign to empower women to fight for their rights and dignity. It has, however, been misused in several instances and the problem arises when the complainant is unable to prove the allegations. Such is the case of singer Ali Zafar and Meesha Shafi.
Meesha Shafi levelled serious allegations of being harassed by Ali Zafar multiple times. Ali Zafar had challenged those allegations with a defamation case in which, Shafi, has so far failed to present the witnesses before the court to testify her allegations. While Ali Zafar has presented nearly eight witnesses in the case to testify his innocence.
Mr Afzal, Lecturer at Govt MAO College Lahore has committed suicide after false harassment allegations. #AcademiaMag #MeToo #innocent #Justice #JusticeForAfzal @edutv_hec @GovtOfPunjab @RajaYassir_PTI @Shafqat_Mahmood @maocollege pic.twitter.com/hLVEH4CsCD
— Academia Mag (@academiamag) October 19, 2019
Hence, a mechanism is needed to distinguish truth from false allegations, and likewise punishment for the preparators of false accusations to curb the misuse of Me Too campaign.