For those who may not know this, harassment allegations surfaced recently against influencer and vlogger Umar Khan ‘Ukhano’ and Pakistanis were immediately shocked and outraged. One alleged account after another came to light. As with these allegations and the post #metoo era, countless people on the internet started calling him out and “canceling him”. There were also those who decided to stick by his side and encouraged people to ‘listen to both sides of the story’, as they put it.
One of these people was Eva Zu Beck.
In her Instagram story, she talked about how she had traveled with Ukhano for two weeks in Pakistan’s northern areas and had a very pleasant experience with him and never felt uncomfortable.
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#DivaReports: Umer Khan, aka content creator #Ukhano on #YouTube has recently come under fire for alleged sexual harassment. International blogger #EvaZubeck and beloved local celebrity #AnousheyAshraf who have interacted with Khan have stated their support, saying the young man has been nothing but polite and supportive, and has never made them feel uncomfortable. Both ladies made it clear they were only stating their own experiences, and hoped the truth come out soon. @evazubeck @anousheyashraf @ukhano
Update: Eva has since retracted her statement on her story, stating, “I retract my previous [statement] about Umar’s actions. Umar seemed to be a friend, a brother to me, and I found it hard to believe in what circulating about him on the internet, his abominable actions. My immediate gut reaction was to support him, as one would support a brother. Unfortunately, I wasn’t made aware by him about the full and honest scope of what happened. Now that I have proper internet and the full picture, I can no longer support someone who shows clear disrespect to women. All my love and support to any woman who has ever faced harassment.”
YouTuber Irfan Junejo also spoke up, perhaps in response to this.
In times like these it is important to raise your voice and take a stance. The evidence is clear and stacking up. There is a pattern visible; and if you are not a victim of said pattern – it does not mean the pattern hasn’t affected anyone else or does not exist.
— Irfan Junejo (@irfanjunejo) July 18, 2019
No person should be able to abuse their powers of influence. I feel deeply for the victims of these actions and hope that they get heard with integrity.
— Irfan Junejo (@irfanjunejo) July 18, 2019
Pakistani model Zara Peerzada weighed in on the controversy in her Instagram stories
Rehmat Ajmal, another Pakistani model, also shared her thoughts on her Instagram story that were along the same lines as Junejo’s. “A harasser doesn’t harass every single individual he interacts with. One person’s good experience does not negate another person’s uncomfortable and horrible experience. Do not deviate from the subject; accept, apologize and mend”
And as for Eva’s statement, the reaction wasn’t positive:
Mujhe aaj tak kisi macharr ney nahi kaata, jab ke main 2 WEEKS khullay aasaman ke neechay mospel lagae bagair baithi hoon. Iss se yeh sabit hota hai ke macharr nahi kaat tey, aur aap sab log jhootay hain.#EvazubeckLogic
— Aima. (@AYJamal_) July 18, 2019
Eva has spoken, so your claims don’t count.
— Palwasha Minhas (@palwashaminhas) July 18, 2019
Eva zubeck thinks he didnt harass women so of course he didnt
— ﻡ, (@naheinyaar) July 18, 2019
Apart from Eva Zu Beck, fellow YouTuber Mooroo also made a statement about the entire issue.
In his latest Instagram story, he clarified that he was not taking anyone’s side, but is only asking people to wait to hear both sides of the story. He clarified the same sentiment on Twitter as well.
If you do not have patience to understand both sides of the story before you make up your mind you will fall prey to your own ignorance in due time and let me clarify for the simpleminded This does not mean that I am in favour of someone I am in favour of the truth.
— Mooroo (@Mooroo4) July 18, 2019
But people were not convinced with his explanation and thought that he was defending Ukhano without explicitly saying so.
Mooroo supporting ukhano lmao bhai aap tou chup karein aap pehle he cancel ho chuke hain
— 🤙 (@TayyabaRizwan6) July 18, 2019
can mooroo stop being so trashy??
— – (@pointlesscriess) July 18, 2019
arey is mooroo ko bhi cancel karo https://t.co/coRUm7hPOL
— ✨ (@bxxrrhhh) July 18, 2019
Other than these two, Anoushey Ashraf also came to Ukhano’s defense using the same rationale.
And of course, people were disappointed in her as well.
ANOUSHEY ASHRAF (DISAPPOINTED)
— Faizan. (@merabichrayaar) July 18, 2019
Shamoon Ismail has also spoken up since.
More power to all the ladies that stood up and showed so much courage. I stand with you all the way.
— Shamoon (@ShamoonIsmail) July 18, 2019
Waqar Zaka also shared his thoughts and had Mathira do the same.
He began by first advising the girls to seek out help from the FIA and then stating that if so many girls have come forward, there must be something to the situation. In the 12-minute-video, he spoke about maintaining an image, how he behaves on Snapchat, the misuse of fame.
Mathira went on to say that when the incident takes place, one should raise their voice at that time, to prevent more victims from being lined up before any action can be taken. She talked about mob mentality on social media and also shared her thoughts on another pending harassment case.
#UkhanoExposed or the Girls ? , this time I will make sure that culprit should face the torture
Gepostet von Waqar Zaka am Freitag, 19. Juli 2019
Update: The piece has been updated to remove Raza Samo’s statement due to a withdrawal of consent.
To this point, the internet seems to be divided. This, too, is a developing story. Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Cover Image Source: hipinpakistan.com/Eva Zu Beck via Facebook.com/Ukhano via YouTube.com