The nominations for this year’s LUX Style Awards were announced at the end of March and there were, of course, a few too many ‘snubs’ which have become a tradition of sorts for LSA. Most prominently, Ali Zafar was nominated for best actor, best film (producer for Teefa in Trouble) while his film Teefa was nominated in a number of other categories as well. Now, this did not sit well with Eman Suleman and trouble for Teefa started when she spoke out against his nomination and refused to share the platform with him. Here is everything that went down afterwards:
Trouble for Teefa
Here is a list of everyone who withdrew their nomination from the LSAs, following the Ali Zafar controversy:
Almost a month back – on March 30, to be precise – Eman Suleman, the model/actress, who was nominated as the ‘Best Emerging Talent’ in the Fashion category, put out a video on her social media where she expressed her discomfort in sharing her nomination with someone who has been accused of sexual harassment. Eman didn’t say any names but it isn’t wrong to assume that she was talking about the Ali Zafar – Meesha Shafi controversy. In all the reactions that followed the nominations, Eman was the only person who chose to give up her nomination, for the longest time. However, recently, a number of nominees/celebrities/brands have chosen to follow Eman’s suit, by rejecting their nominations.
Saima Bargfrede and Generation
The renowned clothing brand, Generation, and designer, Saima Bargfrede, followed Eman’s suit by refusing to attend the LSA and consequently, rejected their nominations, on the 22nd of April.
The press release which was shared on Generation’s social media accounts said that the brand and Saima Bargfrede, the designer, had “been nominated for the awards of Achievement in Fashion Design (pret) and Best Hair and Makeup Artist respectively at this year’s Lux Style Awards”. It further said that the “two entities have decided to follow in Best Emerging Talent nominee Eman Suleman’s footsteps and not attend this year’s ceremony. The two brands stand with women who face and fight toxic misogyny, sexism and sexual harassment in multiple ways in pursuance of their dreams and indeed in their daily lives.”
Meesha Shafi, too, took to her twitter and shared the following, 23rd of April:
— MEESHA SHAFI (@itsmeeshashafi) April 23, 2019
In her tweet, Shafi wrote that “I want to thank Eman Suleman. What she, Generation and Saima Bargfrede, have said and done is what I consider my award.”
On 23rd of April, Sketches – a Sufi folk rock band from Jamshoro, Sindh – issued the following statement. The band was nominated in four categories and they rejected all four of them.
Rubab Ali and Fatima Nasir
On 24th of April, Pakistani model Rubab Ali took to her Instagram to reject her LSA nomination for ‘Model of the year’.
While Fatima Nasir, who was nominated for the best hair and makeup artist, followed the suit.
Moving on, here is a list of everyone who chimed in with their two cents on the said issue:
Maheen Khan, Zara Peerzada, Jami, Omayr Waqar, and Sarmad Khoosat
The five aforementioned names spoke out against the alleged harasser’s nomination. Here is what they had to say:
Starting with Maheen Khan, the Pakistani fashion and costume designer spoke out yesterday in support of Meesha Shafi and others who have rejected their LSA nominations.
I have said from the outset that the LA, in fact all awards have lost their integrity in more ways than one.More so as a victim of sexual abuse and supporter of the metoo movement I cannot in all conscience support the event .@jamiazaad @sketches https://t.co/9xF6uQn2Yr
— Maheen Khan (@Maheenkhanpk) April 24, 2019
Following Maheen, our favorite Jami, simply ended the conversation by calling the LSAs ‘trash’ and well, that’s that.
Zara Peerzada, the Pakistani model, also called out the fashion industry for keeping their mouths shut, in a morally critical situation, like this one.
Moving on, Omayr Waqar, however, was the sassiest of them all. Here is how he chose to record his protest:
He also shared the following video on his Insta story and honestly, we cannot stop laughing.
Last but not the least, Sarmad Khoosat also chimed in with his appreciation for strong women like Meesha and everyone who have stood their ground, through this.
Yeh nidarrr larkiyan! We stand with all of you. https://t.co/ZCXCKDCvyF
— Sarmad Khoosat (@KhoosatSarmad) April 23, 2019
Amidst all the bedlam, Frieha Altaf deserves a separate heading of her own for her statement was a little too confusing. While she removes herself from the situation by saying that she has nothing to do with the nominations, she also says that the LSAs are close to her heart and that she will uphold all the values that also somehow include respecting the #MeToo movement.
— Frieha Altaf (@FriehaAltaf) April 25, 2019
Munib Nawaz, Shamoon Abbasi, Sadaf Kanwal, Iman Ali, and Ahmed Ali Butt
On the other hand, those who made a decision to be for-LSA had the following to say:
Starting with Munib Nawaz, the designer employed the ‘innocent until proven guilty’ rhetoric, here is what he said:
View this post on Instagram
I thought I might as well say it out loud. Sorry not sorry. What about the horror stories everyone has heard of children being harrased in schools. Schools are still operational. No one seems to throw out their degrees. Just a thought. Not a debate entry #lsa2019 also I was there at the first #lsa as a backstage helper. I've seen it grow as an institution. I've seen it become the reason for so many people entering the media industry… All of us who are a part of this industry or have been a part of this industry owe this platform a little more respect.
Sadaf Kanwal, shared the following on her story:
Moving on, Shamoon Abbasi outrightly rejected everything Meesha and other women have said about the alleged harasser, in the most blatant way possible:
As far as I know Ali zafars and meesha shafis matter came to an end, where meesha Shafi was fined with 10,000 pk rs, on the basis of being unable to prove any sort of harrasment conducted by Ali zafar,
What is this LSA chaotic walk outs in a baseless story..
Matlab kuch bhi?!
— Shamoon Abbasi official (@shamoonAbbasi) April 24, 2019
Iman Ali also took to her Instagram to share her ‘take’ on the issue. She asked us not to judge anyone too quickly.
There was also a small argument that ensued under Iman’s post, we’ve got screenshots for you:
Last but not least, Ahmed Ali Butt is of the view that if someone wants to record their protest, they can definitely do it but they shouldn’t degrade an award in the process.
View this post on Instagram
An award has no worth for anyone except to whom it is given to. It's a token of appreciation from your fellow peers, all the nominees who are elected with you hold that same respect and honor for their craft, yet you are the winner which means they have given you that respect and honor. People have the right to protest and even request not to be nominated if they please to do so, but to degrade an award and to treat it like a piece of garbage is truly sad and uncivilized. This means you have no regard for the art and your fellow peers who gave you the title. There are better ways to protest and let your voice be heard and the matter is already in court will be dealt by the law. LSA is the oldest running awards we have and has nothing to do with the other thing. Let's keep it that way by being civilized and respectful. (still if you want to put it out on the road it's better to return it to the LSA with dignity) #lsa2019 #luxstyleawards #respect #bedecent
To wrap it all up, here is the official statement from the LSAs:
What do you think of the whole controversy? Please let us know in the comments.