Farewells are a staple of university life. Anyone who has any experience regarding the organization of these events will attest to the fact that it is not at all an easy task.
One of the things that immediately needs to be figured out is the theme. The pressure is usually on because you cannot repeat a theme from the past and it has to be a novel idea which everyone will enjoy. Especially the graduating seniors. And similarly, this is what the students at NUST set out to do.
Students at NUST’s School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering decided to make ‘Talaaq’ the theme for their farewell.
Oh, and. The description of the event tried to draw similarities between a divorce and graduation.
It talked about how the seniors and their degree are the two parties seeking separation. The juniors are the spectators and the entire event would play out, in their opinion, like the proceedings in a divorce case. The event page has apparently been deleted. However, setting such a tone-deaf theme in the first place is pretty much unacceptable.
In no way are we saying that divorce is a taboo topic and should be avoided. However, it is something serious which should not be ridiculed or used as a gimmick, don’t you think?
Divorces are usually incredibly painful for both parties. Making light of serious issues such as this trivializes the pain of the people who have or are going through this process.
A post on social media by one particular student, Javaria Waseem, sparked outrage towards the event by multitudes of people.
She talked about how offensive the theme was and urged the students to change it. Javaria was quick to point out that she was not lambasting against her institution, but the mindsets of certain students who thought this idea was appropriate.
Note: I am not trying to pull down the whole institution because of a few immature people. I am trying to highlight how insensitive and unethical people can be. I won't remove my post until unless told by the university administration itself (once they discuss this case)
— Javaria (@JavariaWaseem) April 23, 2018
The original post has been deleted on all her social media accounts as the university administration is taking action regarding the matter and Javeria also declined to speak with us on the matter but she has highlighted a very important concern
Javaria declined to comment on the matter because she feels the university is handling the matter and her input is no longer required. While her bravery had the event removed and made the organizers rethink their plan, she mentioned how she was constantly being harassed by them – both online and in person, because of the fact that she stood up and said something.
As for the students who chose that theme, sure their original intentions might not have been to hurt anyone, it ultimately did exactly that
A NUST student commented, ‘Coming from a divorced family myself, this has always been a sensitive topic for me. When I first got to know about it, I could not believe it! Do they even know what this one word can trigger in so many people? Do they know how this one word has destroyed the lives of so many people? We still live in a society where this one word is a taboo to talk about in social gatherings. And here they are, making fun of it, unapologetically.”
A creative license does not mean one can ignore the repercussions or the hurt something might cause to another human being, the recent Anwar Maqsood controversy is an example
In this day and age, we expect better from people than for them to trivialize serious issues that cause others pain for their own amusement. Let us hope this is an example for people trying to push the envelope by using creativity as an excuse.
What do you think of the matter? Let us know in the comments.
Cover image via willsuae.com