Qandeel Baloch : The First Social Media Star Of Pakistan

The Sensational life and death of Qandeel Baloch by Sanam Maher is a book which not only tells us about the tumultuous life of the first social media star of Pakistan and her brutal murder.


But, it also put forward several important questions related to the women safety. Especially, in the context of the online harrassment of women.


Biography of Qandeel Baloch.

Qandeel Baloch, The Kim Kardashian of Pakistan.


Although, the protagonist of this book was from Pakistan. But, her life will resonate with lots of women out there. Especially, those women who are challenging the patriarchy and the misogynistic notions about women.


So, let’s start by asking some important questions related to this person who is no more with us.


Who was Qandeel Baloch?

Qandeel Baloch was the first social media celebrity of the Islamic republic of Pakistan.


In fact, her real name was Fouzia Azeem. She was from a nondescript village by the name of Shah Sadar Din, Punjab, Pakistan.


She was married when she was only seventeen years old to an unlettered man.


She ran away from her in-laws home. Because, she saw a dream. A dream where she can live her life on her own terms.


She was a bold woman who used to upload her videos and photographs on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.


She defied the so-called cultural and religious norms that’s why she was murdered by her brother in the name of honour. She was only twenty-six years old.


If you are from Pakistan then I’m sure you are already aware about this person which I’m writing about. 


But, majority of the people, especially from the Indian subcontinent seldomly heard about Qandeel Baloch and why she was murdered.


Why Qandeel was killed?

Although, Qandeel was killed by her brother in July 2016. But, the reality is that she was killed by the society.


The same society which leaves no stone unturned when it comes to the safety of women. But, they raise their voices selectively, isn’t it?


Qandeel Baloch was the victim of ‘honour killing’. And she was not the only one who killed in the name of so-called honour.


Although, Qandeel’s father compared his daughter with Benazir Bhutto, The first woman Prime Minister of Pakistan.


But, the same hypocrite People and society who enjoyed the videos and photos of Qandeel made her a ‘Pariah’ when she was alive.


Honour Killings and the online harrassment of women –

Lots of women in Pakistan were the victims of ‘Honour Killings’. And many more will die in the near future. Because, you cannot change a society by using a magic stick.


Although, being an Indian I can belittle Pakistan and say uncountable number of bad stuff about them. 


But, only a jingoistic person can do such kind of things. Because, India is also not a safe heaven for women.


Be it Pakistan or India, honour killings are common in both the countries.


But, what kind of honour will a person or a society get when it kill someone.


Only God can answer such kind of question. Because even animals don’t kill each other in the name of honour.


The online world is too deep and the same time it gave you an anonymity to do uncountable number of things. That’s what makes it more dangerous.


The death of Qandeel opened the Pandora’s box in Pakistan.


Prior to her death the law in Pakistan allowed the family members of the deceased person either to Pardon or to accept the ‘Blood money’ as a compensation payment for the crime which shows that what kind of ludicrous laws they are following in the name of religion.


Although, they had rectified the loophole on the existing laws but how can you change the misogynistic mindset.


Crime against women is not restricted to India or Pakistan. It’s a global phenomenon. 


Acid attacks against women are common. In India we have acid-attack Survivor like  Reshma Qureshi.


In Pakistan, women like Malala Yousafzai were targeted because they raised their voices for the girl child education.


Although, we need innovative methods and solutions to tackle the rising crime against women.


But, we also need to understand the reality. And the sad truth is –

‘The biggest enemy of the women is women’.


It all starts with the birth of girl child. Female infanticide is common throughout the Indian subcontinent.


The concept of ‘Paraya dhan’ (Other’s Property) is the notion which needs to be challenged through thick and thin.


Need of the hour –

A collective effort is what we need to solve any serious problem (s). And it requires the support of each and every person out there.


And when it comes to online harrassment of women. We need gender sensitive people not only in our institutions but also near the local thana (Police Station).


Because, people are not comfortable sharing their issues with the police officials as long as they remain insensitive.


We also need to spread awareness about the laws regarding online harrassment. 


It doesn’t matter from which country you are from, but somewhere down the line we all are ignorant about the laws.


Proper seminars, debates & discussions, and People-to-People contact needs to be encouraged throughout the world.


Especially, in the context of online harrassment.


And we also need to keep in mind that no one is a saint out there. There are people who also misuse the laws for their heinous motives.


But, in general we need a change. But how. I’ll quote what Mahatma Gandhi said once :-


‘You must be the change you wish to see in the world.’


Start with your family. Support your sisters, daughters, mothers and your female friends.


Society cannot change within a day or two. It requires a constant effort day and night.


Although, we can’t bring Qandeel Baloch back to life. But, at least we can save the life of many more women like her.


I will conclude with this bon mot :-

A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.


My Ratings : ⭐⭐⭐⭐  (4/5)


I hope you like this, Thanks for Reading. If you like it then do share it with your friends and family alike. Jai Hind. 


Order your copy from your here –



Yash Sharma

Namaste reader, My name is Yash, and books for me are like a medicine, which removes my ignorance and also helps me in behaving more like a human.Though I live in the world’s largest democracy, India, but when I look around, I realized that this democratic nation of mine has turned into a kind of feudal oligarchy or kleptocracy, where people from a particular community or I would say particular surname has hijacked this democracy, and the political parties in India has turned itself into a kind of family enterprises where the family members are the only shareholders. And I want to change this, and books are a weapon which is helping me, so that I can help others and my nation.Shukriya for reading this Thought of mine.

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32 Responses

  1. Lekshmi says:

    Very hurt touching biography

  2. Ritika Jain says:

    Patriarchy is something that is out rightly wrong.
    As we mark the beginning of Navratri, So along with worshipping the Goddess in her 9 forms, each man should also respect and give freedom of choice to all the women related to him.
    It’s not just about women..but about gender sensitivity and importantly each individual’s empowerment at all the possible fronts.
    True..we have lost and are losing so many women at the hands of patriarchy and lack of gender sensitization.
    It’s important to have laws and more important is the deterrence to the laws.
    For all the good things to happen, we need progressive society of the progressive people with the progressive mindset and yes more writers like you who are brave enough to delve into the non fiction arena and working hard to remove people’s ignorance.
    Keep doing the good work.
    Thanks for an enlightening article👏👏

    • Thanks to you for this beautiful comment. I’m glad that you liked it and found it worth reading. To save the humanity we need people who follow humanism through thick and thin. Thanks again for your time. And keep reading (:

  3. Fini says:

    online harassment can happen to anyone, especially women. even though we have used online media in a good way and purpose. if I were a person get harassment online, I would ignore that people and if necessary report it to the police.

  4. Aishwarya says:

    Kudos to you for coming up with such an article which not only tells about this must know personality but also emphasizes on online safety. Its high time that we speak up and rise against it instead of falling prey to the online harrassment by someway or the other we shall use this very important platform to create awareness and educate people to have lesser no. Of these unfortunate. cases like the one with Qandeel Bhaloch. I agree with and appreciate the quotes that you have used at several points esp regarding a woman being enemy of another woman. I am sure this book must would have done justice to the departed soul just like u have.

    • Thanks for this adorable comment. Glad that you liked it. And yes, fighting Ignorance is must for a society. That’s why Education matters the most. In fact, the real Education which will rekindle the curiosity inside you to question each and everything out there. Keep reading and thanks again for giving ur time and going through this article (:

  5. elle says:

    This was beautifully written, pointed out and brought light to topics and struggles us women experience, as someone living in a 3rd world country with laws full of loopholes and 90% ruled by the patriarchy that looks down on victims of abuse,rape,assault, murder of a woman and still blaming women for experiencing such heinous acts this shined a light to that unfairness of it all. I hope more people would be educated by this.

  6. Manasvi says:

    Wow…. It was Sooo heart touching…. I don’t know what to say I may have actually have tears in my eyes… This is it’s moving… Thank you you are doing a great work and I’ll like to help you in creating awareness too

  7. Prabal Singh Nain says:

    Once again well written brother….if a woman is educated then kill her in the name of honour killing…and if she is llliterate then kill her in the name of Dowry (after marriage)….this is very sad but it is reality….we should learn from our neighborhood country Bangladesh…. where the punishment for rape is death…. whereas in india the highest punishment for rape is life imprisonment…..I will read this book… definately….👍👍

    • Thanks, Prabal for the comment. Glad that you liked it. I can understand ur point of view. Laws are there, but we need a sensitive society which stops blaming the victim. And in India, we need laws according to our ecosystem. Keep reading (:

  8. Sinthiya Oishi says:

    Hii Yash bhaiya! I’m Oishi from Bangladesh. I hope you are doing well. I’ve read your article. I must say it’s not only written from a layman’s point of view but you’ve also gave solutions for the problems. I like that.

    In fact, I like the way you’ve mentioned about your own country, India.

    Crime against women is a global phenomenon, that’s true.

    Thanks for the article.

    I hope you will enlighten people like us for the time immemorial.

    • Hey! Oishi. I’m doing fine. I hope you are doing well too.

      Thanks for this adorable comment. Glad that you liked it. And you are too kind with ur words. Shukriya, again. And keep reading (:

  9. Madelene says:

    The world is full of crazy people who are depressed…never be put down by a cyber bullying…it’s comes from depressed people who needs help.but hope one day cyber bully will be crime

  10. Meera says:

    I recently read it and it was so sad 🙁 Why do they think honor is all about controlling women? For me an honorable person is someone who is kind, genuine and helps others. Qandeel was all those things. These honor killing practices are revolting. I hope other Pakistani creators get a chance to move out of there if they’re not safe. May her soul Rest In Peace 🙏

  11. Erica says:

    She is a brave woman. She feared no one. She wanted to live her life without limitations. There is nothing wrong in expressing once self, its so sad that people sometimes specially in pakistan vlaues religion beliefs than being you as a person.

    You really are good on your passion.keep it up!congrats!

  12. Jessi says:

    She is a flower which blooms the whole year and it’s fragrance reaches the whole world. As a woman I can say we should plant more flowers like her. We should not remove nor killed this type of flower, it is very rare to find it. Like protecting the endangered species how beautiful will it be if all men protected this kind of women. There are many types of flowers in this world. Some they bloom and vanish in a day but this kind of flowers will bloom the whole time. We should be wise in picking up. It takes two negatives signs to get a positive one and it only need one positive to be positive. If this kind of women is killed everytime remember it will takes generations or 2 to find them back them back just like the two negatives. Well written…

    • Wonderful thought. Just amazing. The way you said is just surreal. Let the flowers bloom, let them spread their sweet fragrance throughout the world. Thnks for this awesome comment. And keep reading (:

  13. Bika says:

    Hii Yash, thank you for this article, it is useful for me who is new to female characters like her, can be an inspiration for other women who have experienced the same thing so that they can rise up and fight for their dignity, so that there is no more oppression of women. Moreover, Islam never teaches killing family members on the grounds of defending family honor. It is unfortunate that there are many such cases there.

    • Hey there! I hope you are doing well.

      First of all thanks for the comment. Glad that you found it worth reading. Killing people in the name of religion is not only inhumane but it shouldn’t be allowed at first. Because as they, Religion is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

      Thnks for giving ur time. Keep reading 🙂

  14. Isra says:

    I think thats so sad, and and so annoying, it doesn’t make sense that women should be victims. do not think that humans are born from the womb of women why there is no respect for women. the government must follow up on things like this as well as listen to the local police, it is very inappropriate to happen. women are human beings we must respect each other.

    • Hello there! I hope you are doing well. I can understand your views. And I appreciate that. We need a society where people accept each other in totality. Although, we are not living in an ideal world. Still, I hope for the best. Because, good things take time. Thanks for reading (:

  15. Kate says:

    We live in a virtual society where online violence exits and where women are the main targets. I hope this article serves as a lesson for everyone that we have the equality of expressing our own views without any harassment involved.
    Thank you for sharing this to me, Yash.

  16. Tyra says:

    I felt sad about what happened to Qandeel. For others, she’s behaving badly in social media thru her acts, entertainment but in return she never forgets her family’s welfare, comfort. His brother or anyone has no right to kill other members of the family. Family must be united. This article explained to us to respect each and everyone. We all have our own reasons why we are here in this situation same as Qandeel. Justice for her.

    Great writing again Yash…:)

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