If you’ve noticed, Imran Ashraf has always been a beacon of hope for our often diminishing drama industry; the roles he’s carefully cherrypicked have always been emblems of societal change, whether it was providing a voice to the marginalized khwajasiras in ‘Alif Allah Aur Insaan,’ or as one of the first, softer, compassionate men on-screen in ‘Gul E Rana,’ or more recently in ‘Ranjha Ranjha Kardi’ for shedding a much needed light on mental health in Pakistan – the diamond of our fraternity is already the most sought-after actor, having been an underdog for a large chunk of his career in its fetal stages.
It didn’t come as a surprise that Imran was then recently hailed by both fellow actors and audiences alike that he was the greatest actor in Pakistan…
The actor’s latest drama ‘Inkaar’ has been lauded for its exploration on the meaning of consent in Pakistan.
With the blaring tagline ‘no means no,’ ‘Inkaar’ stars Yumna Zaidi, Sami Khan and Imran as impeccable kernels for understanding consent and diving deep into the underlining pseudonyms sexual harassment projects in Pakistan; the drama thus far is brilliant in discussing how problematic and dangerous our country has become for girls; men do not understand consent.
Imran plays the narcissistic, sociopathic Rehan – a man who raises the hair on your arms with his terrifying portrayal as a man who just doesn’t understand “no.”
His character continually harasses Yumna’s character, despite being told very clearly that she is not interested in him; yet his behavior is unwaveringly psychotic – he’s not listening to her, he’s always crossing lines with her and belting out threats. His fearless, intrepid determination to make her uncomfortable is terrifying and is narrating the deeper problem rooted in our society; where men will assert their authority over women despite being given a clear red signal.
Imran, however, received bouts of criticism for playing Rehan with many questioning why he chose to do play such an audacious antagonist.
The actor took to Instagram to respond to all the hate in a brilliant speech where he clearly stated that it is his duty as an actor to teach society to respect women. Imran revealed that prior to signing ‘Inkaar,’ he had “7 scripts” that were all “positive, romantic and hero oriented,” however he chose the former because he feels it his role to help “save sisters and daughters” because “they are precious.”
“Some of my lovely fans ask[ed] me why I chose this druggy psycho negative role so the answer is I am trying to save daughters in universities and other institutions where they face people like Rehan…”
The actor expressed how this was his duty as an actor to “aware society as much as I can that no means no.” Here’s the full post: