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Perception management strategies for Hafiz Saeed

Hafiz Saeed
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News Analysis |

Hafiz Saeed seems to have drawn the ire of international media again. Every now and then, inevitably, Hafiz Saeed is a feature in the news. Some times he is arrested and other times he is released. His arrest and his release are widely covered by the media, domestic as well as foreign. However, the attention that he gets in the media is almost always negative. How could Hafiz Saeed manage his public image in a more efficient manner? Instead of being the villain of Western and Indian media, can Hafiz Saeed be the hero?

In order to achieve that, some suggestions are given below:

For starters, he needs to change his beard. His current style is that of a firebrand mullah. What he needs to do is keep a French beard, with a neatly trimmed moustache on top of it. An example of a beard he could keep is that of Robert Downey Jr., who is a darling of the Western media. Another possibility is to keep a beard like the one Amitabh Bachchan has.

He must learn to speak with his mouth thrown sideways in order to appease Western media. For this, he needs to practice. And he must work to acquire the habits of a true Westernized gentleman.

Other than the beard, he must also change his hat. He’d look much more graceful with a hat like the one Winston Churchill used to wear. As Frank Sinatra once said, “Cock your hate. Angles are attitudes.” The hat he wears now can’t possibly be tilted at any angle that shows attitude. Sinatra would not be pleased.

A wise man once said, “Dress like you’ve made something of yourself, even if you haven’t.” Hafiz Saeed certainly has made something of himself but he doesn’t dress like it. He needs to invest in this department. There are various designer brands out there that can meet a man’s needs.

Read more: Hafiz Saeed approaches LHC to avoid possible arrest

There’s a fine variety of three-piece and two-piece suits available at outlets across Pakistan. These include Diners, Charcoal, Next and various others. Which of these brands suits Hafiz Saeed’s taste ultimately depends on Hafiz Saeed himself. The man needs to put himself out there.

And last but not least, he needs to work on his accent. While having a French beard, a gentleman’s hat and a designer brand suit will go a long way in helping him improve his image, what’s most necessary perhaps is having a posh English accent.

He must learn to speak with his mouth thrown sideways in order to appease Western media. For this, he needs to practice. And he must work to acquire the habits of a true Westernized gentleman. Then, and only then, will the media stop hounding him as a terrorist mastermind.


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