The IHC (Islamabad High Court), the Federal Capital Court of Pakistan prohibited celebrating Valentine’s Day in public areas and government spaces. This ban is effective immediately. Electronic and print media has to follow suit, so law enforcement will be checking all mediums.
This ban was a result of a petition submitted by a state citizen, Abdul Waheed. In his appeal to the court, he mentioned Valentine’s Day is not a part of the Islamic teachings. Furthermore, he elaborated that in the veil of love, this day hides unreported crimes. The degree of immorality, indecency, and nudity urges the court to bar this act. Last year, the President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain requested the nation not to rejoice on this day for similar reasons, but there was no ban at that time.
Valentine’s Day Ban: The Real Reasons
A religious factor always comes into play when any matter has to be final. A ban on Valentine’s Day depicts the fear of the Muslim culture to be replaced by Western values every day. Only two months ago, the wave of Black Friday was taking the online marketers by storm. It was a delight for many, but a moment of concern for all. Many among the Pakistani social media users pondered and were upset about this, was Friday ever black before? So it was boycotted on a certain level. Friday is a sacred day for the whole Muslim community and named with respect. Calling it as “Black Friday” was not in line with the values they cherish. Many stores in Pakistan even presented their deals as White Friday deals.
Inculcating one culture with another is the part and parcel of diversity, which is being questioned a lot in today’s time. Starting from the visa applications to citing terrorism and the list goes on and on. Love and peace are the true essences of the Islamic religion, but the way in which they are presented is not same for all. As one size does not fit all, so one day cannot be celebrated in the same means by all is the general perspective. Although, the motives and underlying reasons are the same across the globe.
Response to the Valentine’s Day Ban
A mixed stance is found in response to the action taken by the IHC. Every year there are two sides to this matter. Given below are both the views of those who are against this ban, and those in favor of it.
Opinions Against the Ban
Banning Valentine’s Day in the opinion of these individuals is like an action to stop spreading love and affection to the near and dear ones. It is a breach of free will and labels Pakistan as being a non-secular state, whereas by the constitution it promotes the idea of secularism.
Opinions in Favor of the Ban
Those who favor the ban consider the day as an attempt to violate the religious code of conduct to be followed on an everyday basis. It is not a part of the Islamic Shariah (Laws). Love is preached by Islam but indecency in the way of celebrating Valentine’s Day should be avoided by all means. Countless cases of rapes are left unreported on such days which creates long-term trouble for many families. Teenagers in their adrenaline rush are seen doing one-wheeling, these situations bring more harm instead of depicting the idea that love is in the air.
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