Actor Hamza Ali Abbasi, in the hour-long interview with the Prime Miniter of Pakistan Imran Khan, discussed some societal issues and politics, highlighted how the media and pop culture influence peoples’ perspectives about religion, family values, and ethics altogether.
“We weren’t even allowed to speak Urdu while I was studying at Aitchison College,” started off Khan, after Abbasi asked him to narrate his journey to God following his own transformation. “This is because slavery leads people to be influenced by those that enslave them,” added the premier, leaving viewers wondering how all this could have anything to do with his religious beliefs.
“So during my early days as a student in one of Pakistan’s very few English medium schools, everyone wanted to be like the British. The post-colonial influence had led the products of English medium institutions to become prototypes of the British,” he added.
Abbasi then recalled how even in 2010, upon visiting the CSS academy, he came to know that students there had to wear suits five days a week. “This is a Pakistani academy,” he complained.
“And when we were growing up, you couldn’t enter the Punjab club or Gym Khanna wearing Pakistani clothes,” recalled Khan. He even pointed out how up until 1974, Pakistani clothes were not allowed inside Sindh club. “So when I went to England I realised, no matter what I or anyone from here did, we could only become a replica of the British.”
“So I started observing the advantages our society had compared to theirs. And I realised our advantage was our belief in God and the hereafter. This kept our morals and family values intact,” added Khan, who has emphasised on the advantage of keeping a family system intact on numerous occasions.
Khan then addressed the American Counterculture of the 1960s: Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll. “This movement had become a part of their pop culture.
Their artists, their celebrities, started propagating it. Our religion for a reason tells us to hide each other’s flaws, but when flaws are advertised, they’re justified, and then they become a part of society,” continued the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman.
“Every other day we hear about another marriage ending. What would you suggest is the reason for that?” Hamza Ali Abbasi inquired to which Imran Khan said, “Unfortunately it has made its way into our products too, and as a consequence, in our society.”
“I saw how badly the culture of sex, drugs and rock&roll had affected the lives of pop stars there. I saw so many celebs going to rehabs, their marriages falling apart, their children would suicide or they would suicide. I watched their lives fall apart,” he continued.
PM further said, “The media has the power to dumb down or educate the masses; but there is always a choice. There are always two paths. I acknowledge one cannot ban,” Khan agreed, addressing what Abbasi insisted earlier. “No one even has that kind of control,” he continued. “But I just wanted to provide an alternative, so makers can realize shows like Ertuğrul can also be created and watched by millions,” noted Khan.
“He (Ertugrul) was such an intellectual and I will always respect him. And he is remembered because everything he did was to right the wrongs in the society,” concluded Khan with Abbasi nodding in agreement.