Recently Propergaanda wrote an article commending the Lums professor’s initiative to promote tolerance and rights of minority when he took his students to Rabwah to show solidarity and support to the Ahmedi Community.
Since then, Taimur Rahman has come under criticism for trivializing claims of sexual harrasment and criticizing the #MeToo movement. He criticised the movement for carrying out “social media trial” without proof. The comment was directed at Urooj Zia’s accusations against Faisal Edhi. He further questioned whether unsolicited sexual advances are necessarily sexual harrasment.
Taimur Rahman comes from a place of privilege in society due to his gender, therefore he cannot understand the female experience. Using information gained through a professional scenario to make unsolicited advances is a form of harrasment, because Urooj Zia never hinted or consented to this information being used for sexual advances. Secondly, in country like Pakistan which has systematic institutional bias against women and minorities, it is more than justified for women and feminists to use collective socio economic boycott. The state and justice system has failed women, with legal requirements such as the “two finger test”, it has marginalised and demonized the victims. In such a case women cannot be asked to seek justice from institutions that are rigged against them.
Mr. Rahman is an influential person with a political following, such reckless statements damage a movement that seeks to help women against sexual abuse and harrasment. In a country like Pakistan such movements are desperately needed to bring some form of accountability.