Non-fictional entertainment shows have given the news cycle its fair share of controversies and moments of sheer idiocy. However, it’s rare for an “entertainment” show to stoop down to such low levels that all lines of decency are crossed. Sami Khan unfortunately had to go through the experience of witnessing the unfortunate example of just how insensitive the people who are allowed to go on national television to question and interview people are when it comes to having manners.
Recently, Sami Khan and Momal Sheikh were invited as guests on the PSL8 special program The Fourth Umpire hosted by Fahad Mustafa. It was all fun and games until the segment where Sami Khan had to answer some questions asked by the dedicated comedians of the show.
What was supposed to be a light hearted roasting done in good humor turned into a volley of personal insults thrown towards Sami Khan.
Sheikh Qasim, a well-known comedian and host, led the segment. He questioned Sami Khan about why his movies didn’t work well on the box office. And when Sami defended his projects and cited the examples of his debut movie Salakhain and his recent movie Wrong Number 2 as being commercial success, Sheikh Qasim appeared to take it personally.
He retorted by pointing out how Khalil Ur Rehman Qamar who has written blockbuster movies Punjab Nahin Jaungi had a flop like Kaaf Kangana and attributed the failure of that movie to Sami Khan being its lead.
Further on, he even suggested Sami to start doing supporting roles and not lead roles. He even brought up an instance of an actress refusing to work with Sami Khan because of his age. It didn’t end here. Sheikh Qasim also said that Sami Khan was publicly berated by a director he worked with.
Indecent Questions Directed at Sami Khan
The questions were all bordering on being personally insulting towards Sami Khan. However, to Sami’s credit he answered them with composure and grace that reflect his stature as one of the most respected actors of the industry with a flourishing career spanning two decades.
What was more baffling to watch was the main host of the show, Fahad Mustafa, sitting by and letting it all happen. Fahad Mustafa is no stranger to hosting business. The man has been single-handedly hosting the biggest game show of the country for years now.
Prior to that he has had a successful stint as a morning show host. But more importantly, Fahad Mustafa is a well-respected and reputed producer and actor of the very same industry that Sami Khan is a part of. In fact, as actors, Sami Khan is Fahad Mustafa’s contemporary. For all these reasons Fahad Mustafa had every reason to interfere when the questions became insulting but for some reason, he chose not to.
Well, what Fahad didn’t do was done by the other members of the entertainment industry. Comments under this interview clip posted on Galaxy Lollywood’s Instagram page were full of support for Sami Khan by his industry contemporaries. The people who have worked with Sami as well as the audiences all wrote words of support for Sami Khan and called out Sheikh Qasim and Fahad Mustafa for allowing such an insulting situation to occur on national television in the first place.
Due to the arbitrary definition of permitted entertainment on Pakistani television the conversation about what should be allowed or banned is a regular occurrence. However, it’s truly surprising that even in the year 2023 we have to remind the people taking up expensive prime time airtime while hosting a show to be respectful towards the guests appearing on their show.
Just because someone is the host doesn’t give them the right to make any kind of personal attacks towards the guests and then defend them by saying they were all just “jokes”. No, insults are not jokes. Personal attacks are not jokes. And if a “host” isn’t even able to distinguish between them perhaps they shouldn’t be given the chance to go on national television to interview anyone. It’s just that simple.