Sunday, June 24, 2012

Pakistani Cover Girls

Here are a few pictures of  sexy Pakistani cover girls:

Pakistani Playboy Girl Tehmeena Afzal:

Playboy Playmate Nadia Moore Ali:

Pakistani Super Model Yasmeen Ghauri:

Pakistani Actress Veena Malik:

Pakistani Model Nargis Fakhri:

Ms. Pakistan Mahleej Sarkari:

Model Shanna Bukhari:

Pakistani Singer Meesha Shafi:

Pakistani Model Amna Ilyas:

Here's a Pakistan Pictorial:

Find more photos like this on PakAlumni Worldwide: The Global Social Network

Here are video shoots of Tehmeena Afzal:


Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Veena Malik Challenges Pakistan's Orthodoxy 

Beautiful Pakistani Models

PakAlumni-Pakistani Social Network 

Huma Abedin Weinergate

Pakistan Media Revolution

Protest Music in Pakistan

Resilient Pakistan Defies Doomsayers

Life Goes On in Pakistan

Pakistani Entrepreneurs Survive Economic Downturn

Silent Social Revolution in Pakistan


Anonymous said...

Dr. Haq,

This is a nice expression of artistic freedom, but I don't think it is going to last very long...

I hear the Taliban are not only bringing Shariah-e-Muhammadi to Pakistan, but also this--

This has nothing to do with Islam.

I pray to Allah to give guidance to these unislamic people.


Data Cruncher said...

"This is a nice expression of artistic freedom"

and so was Salman Taseer's viewpoint on blasphemy for which he paid with his life. Was his killing islamic. It must be, since overwhelming majority of Pakistanis supported him. The lawyers were ready to fight for his case free of cost.

When you apply for Pakistan Passport and sign a declaration that Ahmediyas are non muslims and imposters, that has everything to do with islam.

Anonymous said...

Datacruncher says ""This is a nice expression of artistic freedom.....and so was Salman Taseer's viewpoint on blasphemy"


Salman Taseer's viewpoint on Blasphemy was not sung or painted or photographed or put into prose of poetry.

Therefore, it does NOT come under the category of 'expression of artistic freedom'.

Taseer's Hate Speech was certainly not artistic and had nothing to do with freedom. There are always limits on Expression of Hate Speech, even in Europe.

As for the passport issue: The Constitution declares the Qadianis/Ahmadiyas as NON-Muslim, so how could that be about Islam?

The law specifically and categorically says that it is NOT about Islam. If fact, that passport issue is about some NON-Islamic cult.

I wish you would stop dragging Islam into all the bad things in Pakistan.

Islam is a innocent, peaceful, tolerant, multicultural, inclusive, live-and-let-live religion. I invite to come to Islam and see for yourself.

Data Cruncher said...

"I invite to come to Islam and see for yourself."

I am already a muslim who has left islam. So stop doing any dawah to

The actions of muslims has proved each and every brag of yours as a lie. Islam is anything than what you claim.

That you are 'hopeless' is proved by your statement that Salman Taseer preached hatred.

Anonymous said...

@Datacruncher, you said “I am already a muslim who has left islam. So stop doing any dawah to “

No you are not, here you were an Indian.
“And BTW I am an Indian too.”
you are an Indian who came to US in 90s, then migrated to Canada and went back to NJ. Still own that Camery? Was unpaid bill ever paid? Would you like me to provide your SS#?

Riaz Haq said...

Here's an interesting take on Pakistan by Aziz Nayani as published in Foreign Policy Magazine:

Since its establishment, Pakistan has fostered a sociocentric culture - one that emphasizes the role of community and groupthink, and encourages its members to act in a way that is best for the community or institution they belong to. It is no surprise then that Pakistanis have deep ethnic allegiances that spill over into politics. Ethnic groups, political parties, and even political institutions, as we have seen with the military and more recently with the Supreme Court, require a deeply imbedded sociocentric approach from all of its members.

On the polar end of a sociocentric perspective of society is the individualistic viewpoint - people examine issues and make moral decisions based on what is best for the individual and individual rights and liberties, and not necessarily that of the group. Individualism is much more common amongst people who can be classified as W.E.I.R.D - Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic - a recently coined term to classify a distinct group of people.
At the center of this shift are an increasing number of western educated liberals who find themselves contributing to the national dialogue for a host of issues, thanks to an emerging, robust media. Browsing through the Opinion pages of Pakistan's leading national publications, the Express Tribune, Dawn, and The News International, amongst others, one will find no shortage of liberal viewpoints from a very educated, nearly WEIRD pool of authors - perspectives that are not representative of the population at large, and come from writers who have backgrounds that are not indicative of that of the average Pakistani.

A more ubiquitous media presence, coupled with greater access to information mediums such as televisions and Internet, has contributed to a stronger dissemination of these progressive views. As Pakistan's Internet users approaches 20% of the population, a 66% increase in just four years, and television viewing continues to rise, educated, progressive intellectuals have been able to draw attention to small, yet meaningful issues that display the changing attitudes in the country. This past January, the outrage over Maya Khan and her "Vigil-Aunties," a group of women who swarmed a public park to confront unmarried couples on live TV, exemplified the potential Pakistan's media has in mobilizing and creating outcry over practices that damage individual autonomy. It is not hard to imagine a time recently where such practices may have gone overlooked in Pakistan by the masses.

The rise of a liberal media in Pakistan is a significant trend in the country's ideological development. Individuals like Mir Ibrahim Rahman, the former Goldman Sachs Investment Banker and Harvard educated founder of GeoTV, have created a landscape that, while still nascent, has recently become formidable. Despite its other travails, the democracy that has remained in the country over the past five years has allowed the media to become a more impressive institution capable of catalyzing a paradigm shift in the country.
But not all WEIRD Pakistanis find themselves channeling the media as their primary vehicle for progress. Members of civil society, like Ali Dayan Hassan of Human Rights Watch who was educated at Oxford, businessmen such as Abdul Quayyum Khan Kundi, who has served as the President of the Pakistan Chamber of Commerce-USA, and the hoard of Western-educated employees of companies like the Acumen Fund, have a much more subtle way of spreading a philosophy that is starkly different from the sociocentric approach that Pakistanis are accustomed to....

Hopewins said...

Dr. Haq,

Here is a Makkah-educated Pakistani Maulvi speaking on the conditions in Jannah. I found it fascinating, not only from a psychological viewpoint of the individual Muslim Pakistani, but also from the sociological viewpoint of our whole Muslim society in Pakistan.

Please watch the whole 5 minutes and listen very carefully to each word what he says.

I found this line EXTREMELY interesting at 3:27: "Ek-Ek mard kau sau-sau Mardon ki quwwat ata ki jayay gee"

I suppose believers get the real thing in Jannah, while non-believers will just have to settle for Pfizer's Viagra here on earth?

Thank you.

Hopewins said...

QUE SERA SARI: The Whole Six Yards
By Aamna Haider Isani

Tall, statuesque and intelligent, Nusrat Bhutto was one of the few First Ladies of Pakistan who were of any consequence to their powerful husbands. And she was one of the fewer still who dressed in silk saris, a strand of classic white pearls around her neck, while Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was in office. It was a choice her daughter chose not to make. Benazir opted for the salwar kameez, teamed up always with a green jacket and a white chiffon dupatta, pinned properly to her head. A fashion statement it certainly was not, but choosing the salwar kameez over the sari has its uses: it was preferring nationalism over elegance. It was as if Benazir was dressing herself up in the national flag. But once upon a time, Pakistani women didn’t need to wear their nationalism literally on their sleeves.

There was a time when high-profile Pakistani women like Fatima Jinnah, Naheed Mirza and Begum Liaquat Ali Khan, as well as Nusrat Bhutto, wore the sari unapologetically, and with elan. But then that was before General Zia came along and officially announced the sari to be “un-Islamic”. Politically, thanks to Zia, the sari in Pakistan belongs to a bygone era—it’s too much of an expression of “enlightened moderation”, as President Musharraf would put it. The sari is a “softer” image of Pakistan that reveals too much of a woman’s body for an Islamic republic. It also connotes too much tolerance for India, for political or public figures to be seen in one. Definitely not in election year at least, which is why no woman parliamentarian today goes to the assembly in a sari. However, politics hasn’t stopped fashionable Pakistani women from once again expressing allegiance to the six yards of fabric that manages to stir up enough controversy amongst right-wing zealots and nationalists alike. After all, there’s nothing like a bare midriff to get the mullahs up in arms.

While it will never replace the salwar kameez in mass popularity, the sari most certainly does not face the risk of extinction either. Apart from being worn by Parsis and Hindus in Pakistan, it is also donned by women from (non-Punjabi) Urdu-speaking families. “My mother still doesn’t own a formal salwar kameez,” says Amna Jamot, who belongs to a family of middle-class Urdu-speaking migrants. “She wore only saris and it comes naturally to her generation.” But, she admits, it doesn’t come naturally to hers, though she has promised her mother that she’ll “familiarise” herself with the sari soon. That ‘soon’ will probably be somewhere close to the time she gets married.

Not that young girls in Pakistan don’t fantasise about their first sari. The sari has been elevated to the level of the ball gown—the formal dress without which no wedding is complete. For many modern, educated girls, the sari symbolises independence and individuality. Often at the age of 18 they are allowed to wear one to their graduation party, Pakistan’s equivalent of prom night. It’s a sign that they’ve made the transition from school to college and from girlhood to womanhood. The sari fulfils in them the urge to be different, as well as to look mature and elegant. It’s also become an expression of freedom and rebellion for celebrities like Ali Saleem, Pakistan’s most famous cross-dresser. Better known as the persona of Begum Nawazish Ali who hosts a popular talk show on AAJ TV, Ali in his element wears nothing but designer saris with exotic, revealing and fully embellished blouses while he flirts with his guests. The sari becomes a vehicle of exhibitionism for Ali who confesses that his ultimate fantasy is to “die performing on a glass stage in the middle of a vast sea with the whole world watching”!

Hopewins said...


However, wearing a sari has become a statement that works both ways: you wear a sari to be noticed, and wearing one ensures that you are. This has posed a dilemma for some members of the Hindu minority living in Karachi. “I’ve always worn the sari,” says Ira Bai, a Hindu housemaid working in the city’s posh Bath Island. “But my daughter now wears the salwar kameez. She lives in Hyderabad and commutes a lot between cities. Wearing the sari attracts too much unwanted attention.” It helps explain why the younger generation of Hindu Pakistanis tends to limit wearing saris to family celebrations and festivals. The sari also has to compete with the more ‘globalised’ look that many young Pakistani women favour.

One of Pakistan’s trendiest fashion designers, Deepak Perwani, belongs to a Hindu household but confesses a disinterest in reviving saris in Pakistan. He prefers to make risque and funky western outfits that appeal to the hip and rich elite. “I design for the young, and the young in Pakistan don’t wear saris,” he says. Out of every 100 clients only seven or eight will go for one, he adds. “It’s an extremely elegant garment and the salwar kameez can never replace that elegance and style, but the sari belongs to the gentry of Pakistan or the older generation. The old aunties still wear saris but it’s just not practical for the modern woman.” Nevertheless, he adds, he would want his bride to be married in one, whenever he decides to tie the knot.

That’s just it. To the new generation, while the sari in Pakistan has become defunct as a casual dress, it has at the same time been elevated to the official level of the ball gown—the formal dress without which no wedding can be complete. A couple of saris are de rigueur in a trousseau, which is why Umar Sayeed, one of Pakistan’s top-notch bridal couturiers, claims the sari is making a comeback. According to him, it’s the increasing demand for saris for weddings that allows sari-manufacturing areas like Karachi’s Orangi Town to prosper. “Someone must be buying these saris for the production to be on a constant high,” he says. “As a designer I see a 1:3 ratio (of saris to salwar kameezes) and brides from all over Pakistan are coming to us for saris to wear to their Valimas (a traditional dinner hosted by the groom’s parents one day after the main wedding ceremony). The demand for bridal saris is increasing. They are timeless and people realise the worth of investing in them.” Maheen Khan, chairperson of Fashion Pakistan, one of Pakistan’s fashion councils, is one of the few designers who have modernised the sari in an attempt to revive it. She has created the ‘half-sari’, a two piece combination that tucks a separate dupatta into a folded petticoat.

Designer saris in Pakistan, mostly made of delicate French chiffon and embellished, easily sell for over 50,000 Pakistani rupees. Young girls rarely opt for banarsis or other traditional silk weaves, and prefer to wear simpler chiffons or light silks with stylised sleeveless blouses. Women who wish to pick up cotton saris still look towards India for the ultimate stamp of authenticity. While formal saris are bought for the label they come with, everyday wear must bear the ‘Made in India’ tag for them to be considered authentic. Though the sari has undoubtedly seen a revival in Pakistan, in no small measure thanks to the popularity of Indian soaps, it begins to fade out as you go up north. The sari is strongest in the south—an interesting variety can be seen in Karachi, the cosmopolitan city that is home to several different sects and communities. As you go up towards Punjab it’s worn mainly as an extravagant bridal costume, and further up in the North Western Frontier, it gets lost under the folds of the burqa. And it certainly won’t regain its status of yore until we see Begum Musharraf draped in one.

Riaz Haq said...

HWJ: "To the new generation, while the sari in Pakistan has become defunct as a casual dress, it has at the same time been elevated to the official level of the ball gown—the formal dress without which no wedding can be complete."

Sari sales down in India too.

In his 2007 Times Of India op-ed column, Shashi Tharoor wrote that the sari was going the way of the kimono.

“What will happen once the generation of women who grew up routinely wearing a sari every day dies out? The warning signs are all around us now. It would be sad indeed if, like the Japanese kimono, the sari becomes a rare and exotic garment in its own land, worn only to temples and weddings. Perhaps it’s time to appeal to the women of India to save the sari from a sorry fate.”

Riaz Haq said...

FHM magazine readers vote Veena Malik for the top 100 sexiest list, reports TOI:

According to the buzz doing the rounds, Bollywood starlet Veena Malik leaves behind Hollywood hotties in world sexiest women list. She broke all the past record and makes her mark in the list. She beat Hollywood Babes like Kim Kardasian, Britney Spears, Anjelina Jolie, Camaron Diaz, Megan Fox, Paris Hilton as well as her bollywood contemporizes like Poonam Pandey , Sonam Kapoor, Shilpa Shetty in a magazine poll.

Veena Malik said, "I am really excited with the news since it means people are not voting for me only based on my physical looks. They are looking at me in entirety".

Bollywood Bombshell Veena Malik fans from across the globe have voted to make her the sexiest woman in the world. She has been crowned the sexiest woman in the world by a leading men's fashion magazine.

Riaz Haq said...

Here's an ET report on Veena Malik stopping traffic in Bangalore:

Pakistani actor Veena Malik recently caused a traffic jam in Bangalore when she stepped out to shoot her debut Kannada film, Dirty Picture: Silk Sakkath Maga on Friday. When the beauty appeared on the sets, the gathering crowd caused a traffic jam, affecting several of the neighbouring business districts.

Although Malik’s presence was kept secret by film-makers, the masses caught a glimpse of her when she first arrived. Around 20,000 screaming fans started congregating around the area, making it impossible for security personnel to manage the crowd or control the traffic. When the solution got completely out of control, the film’s producer called in the police to handle the fans.

Despite the hoards of people surrounding her, Malik seemed to be in high spirits, enjoying all the attention coming her way. The actor, who first became famous from a stint on the Indian version of “Big Boss”, made her way around the crowd gracefully, waving to all her fans and signing autographs.

“This response is unbelievable. I am sure the movie will be a hit,” she later commented.

The film, which also stars Akshay and Anitha Bhat, is a regional remake of Milan Luthria’s blockbuster Dirty Picture released in 2011. Shooting for Dirty Picture: Silk Sakkath Maga officially began in studios last week.

This was the second time Malik has been mobbed by her fans. Before this, the actor attracted a large crowd on Fiji Beach, Australia, proving that she has a great fan following all over the world.

Her crazy fans

“I think I have been appreciated a lot. A Pakistani guy wanted to kidnap and marry me – but he was a kid back then,” Veena told The Express Tribune. “Another Pakistani fan used to send me flowers every day. There’s a guy on Twitter who calls himself Mr Veena Malik; I consider him a psycho, for he has hacked my Twitter and email account,” she said.

Riaz Haq said...

Here's a CNN report on first Indian-born playmate whose father is Christian and mother Muslim:

Sherlyn Chopra, the controversial, unstoppable and very expressive Indian model has now beaten them all to be the best thing someone with her ambitions could wish for- being a Playmate!
Sherlyn's all ready to be featured on the worldwide leader of men's erotic magazines, Playboy. So her hiatus from the Bollywood scene isn't because she's on a break- but because she's about to get the biggest break someone with a body like that could wish for. Not just that, she's bonded with the founder of the magazine, Hugh Hefner over the weekend. Don't believe us? Check out Hugh and Sherlyn's Twitter timelines, to be flooded with not only their photo together, but also photos of Sherlyn hanging out with other playmates.
"Playing dominoes with @CrystalHarris @trishafrick @ChelseaRyan_pb @cristalcamden @missashleyhobbs @sherlynchopra," tweeted Hugh, and Sherlyn went on to call Hefner “The most compassionate man on planet Earth!” in her tweet, tagged along with a picture of both of them.
So what most of our Kingfisher babes actually talk about has been achieved by Ms Chopra, whose limited stint in Bollywood shouldn't bother her anymore now. We suppose directors and producers will now line up to sign the lady for their films. Are you listening, Pooja Bhatt and Poonam Pandey?
Also, the unabashed lady is all out with images of her, in the nude- shot during her shoot there. She calls it a liberating experience.
Well, way to go, we say!

Riaz Haq said...

Here's an India Today story on a Canadian-Indian porn star Sunny Leone:

Here's some good news for the fans of Sunny Leone in Pakistan. Her debut Bollywod film Jism 2 will release on Eid in the country.

The official Twitter handle of the film shared the news on the micro-blogging site and wrote, "#Jism2 will release on Eid in Pakistan! :)(sic)."

However, she has no regrets for what she does, and knows her work as a porn star goes against Indian culture. But Sunny Leone says its because the country's younger generation is willing to accept all kinds of people that she has been able to make inroads into the Hindi film industry.

"I did not think that people will like me because of my background, like what I do for my living in the US. I was not sure if it would be accepted here," Sunny, who has made her Bollywood debut with erotic thriller Jism 2 said.

What set the ball rolling for the 31-year-old, Indo-Canadian adult star here was her participation in reality show Bigg Boss 5. She received the offer for Jism 2 via acclaimed filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, and the spotlight has been on her ever since.

Sunny, who was named among top 12 porn stars of the world by Maxim magazine in 2010, says the prejudices for people in her profession seem to be diminishing in the minds of the youth.

"I think the young generation of people are ready to see someone like me on TV. Otherwise I would not be here. I think one should live life the way they want regardless of what people think about you," she added.

Jism 2, which released Friday, has proved to be beyond just a bold attempt to show skin and sex. Sunny, who is paired with Arunoday Singh and Randeep Hooda in the movie, says she had fallen in love with its script.

"It's been almost 12 years or so... I have done everything under the sun, did everything that is wrong as per Indian culture. (For 'Jism 2'), I fell in love with the story. I loved reading it again and again, and this film will always be special for me," she added.

Read more at:

Anonymous said...

these pakistani girls are so sexy

Anonymous said...

As with most Pakistan media and issues on the web, 90% of visitors are Indians and not Pakistanis at all. It seems that Indians' obsession and hatred for Pakistan is alive and well. They hide behind the anonymity of the internet and pretend. Nothing new here: as a patriotic Pakistani my dream is to seal the Indian border and to awaken my country to make it realize that there are 200 countries in the world today and not just one! I don't want war with India: I don't want anything to do with India and I don't want Indians to do anything with my country!
Pakistan Zinda-Abad!
India - In...who?

Riaz Haq said...

#Playboy Magazine to Drop Nudity as #Internet Fills Demand. #SiliconValley's Suhail Rizvi Owns Majority Stake Now.

Playboy, which had gone public in 1971, was taken private again in 2011 by Mr. Hefner with Rizvi Traverse Management, an investment firm founded by Suhail Rizvi, a publicity-shy Silicon Valley investor, who has interests in Twitter, Square and Snapchat among others. The firm now owns over 60 percent. Mr. Hefner owns about 30 percent (some shares are held by Playboy management).

The magazine is profitable if money from licensed editions around the world is taken into account, Mr. Flanders said, but the United States edition loses about $3 million a year. He sees it, he said, as a marketing expense. “It is our Fifth Avenue storefront,” he said.

He and Mr. Jones feel that the magazine remains relevant, not least because the world has gradually adopted Mr. Hefner’s libertarian views on a variety of social issues. Asked whether Mr. Hefner’s views on women were the exception to that rule, Mr. Flanders responded that Mr. Hefner had “always celebrated the beauty of the female figure.”

“Don’t get me wrong,” Mr. Jones said of the decision to dispense with nudity, “12-year-old me is very disappointed in current me. But it’s the right thing to do.”


As part of a redesign that will be unveiled next March, the print edition of Playboy will still feature women in provocative poses. But they will no longer be fully nude.

Its executives admit that Playboy has been overtaken by the changes it pioneered. “That battle has been fought and won,” said Scott Flanders, the company’s chief executive. “You’re now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it’s just passé at this juncture.”

For a generation of American men, reading Playboy was a cultural rite, an illicit thrill consumed by flashlight. Now every teenage boy has an Internet-connected phone instead. Pornographic magazines, even those as storied as Playboy, have lost their shock value, their commercial value and their cultural relevance.

Playboy’s circulation has dropped from 5.6 million in 1975 to about 800,000 now, according to the Alliance for Audited Media. Many of the magazines that followed it have disappeared. Though detailed figures are not kept for adult magazines, many of those that remain exist in severely diminished form, available mostly in specialist stores. Penthouse, perhaps the most famous Playboy competitor, responded to the threat from digital pornography by turning even more explicit. It never recovered.

Previous efforts to revamp Playboy, as recently as three years ago, have never quite stuck. And those who have accused it of exploiting women are unlikely to be assuaged by a modest cover-up. But, according to its own research, Playboy’s logo is one of the most recognizable in the world, along with those of Apple and Nike. This time, as the magazine seeks to compete with younger outlets like Vice, Mr. Flanders said, it sought to answer a key question: “if you take nudity out, what’s left?”

It is difficult, in a media market that has been so fragmented by the web, to imagine the scope of Playboy’s influence at its peak. A judge once ruled that denying blind people a Braille version of it violated their First Amendment rights. It published stories by Margaret Atwood and Haruki Murakami among others, and its interviews have included Malcolm X, Vladimir Nabokov, Martin Luther King Jr. and Jimmy Carter, who admitted that he had lusted in his heart for women other than his wife. Madonna, Sharon Stone and Naomi Campbell posed for the magazine at the peak of their fame. Its best-selling issue, in November of 1972, sold more than seven million copies.

Riaz Haq said...

Urdu newspaper ad featuring Nargis Fakhri sparks outrage on social media

No one can tell what makes Pakistanis fume. This time an advertisement featuring Bollywood actress Nargis Fakhri on the front pages of leading Urdu newspapers seems to have done the job.

Many, including journalists, took to Twitter to condemn the ‘obscenity’ of the seemingly innocent ad that simply shows a woman lying down with a phone in her hand.

Riaz Haq said...

Banned in #Pakistan: A #Muslim #Porn Star’s Sexual Crusade via @thedailybeast

Pakistani-American adult film star Nadia Ali is famous for wearing a hijab in her porn films. She says she’s challenging how the veil suppresses women’s sexuality.
A woman enters. Donning a hijab, she prepares and serves dinner for her turbaned husband. She appears subservient, but when the man isn’t looking, swipes his car keys, slips on a pair of high heels, sneaks out the door of their posh mansion, and speeds off. When she returns, the enraged man grabs her by the neck and drags her into the house. She pleads with him not to use “the stones” to torture her, so he opts for beating her with a switch. The woman screams, “I’m sorry! I did something for you,” but he doesn’t relent. He begins to get aroused by the pain he’s inflicting, and before you know it, the veil is lifted and we’re in the midst of a full-fledged porn scene.

Welcome to Women of the Middle East, a controversial adult film that comes with the tagline, “They may look suppressed, but given an opportunity to express themselves freely, their wild, untamable natural sexuality is released. This may just be what was in bin Laden’s porn collection, experience it for yourself.”
The veiled woman is played by Nadia Ali, a 24-year-old porn star and first-generation American from Pakistan. She’s been in the adult industry for just a year, but doesn’t mind pushing religious boundaries in the name of XXX entertainment. Oh, and she’s also a practicing Muslim.
Ali is often filmed wearing her hijab—and little else—while engaged in various hardcore sexual activities. Hijabs, or veils worn by many Muslim women to cover their bodies in the presence of males outside of their immediate family, are deeply rooted in Islamic culture and religion. Tied to the Quranic concept of female modesty, they’re also viewed by detractors as a way to subjugate and silence women. For Ali, donning a hijab in porn is empowerment. Determined to break down the barriers of this age-old taboo, she doesn’t think of her work as anti-hijab porn, but in a culture where it is conceivable for a cleric to ban women from touching bananas and cucumbers due to their phallic resemblance, she hopes to inspire change.

“I’ve been told, ‘you’re not a Muslim, you’re a disgrace to Pakistan, Pakistan won’t accept you,’ but I do come from a Middle Eastern background and I am Muslim, not the way my parents are, but by practice,” Ali tells the Daily Beast. “My sister covers her head, she’s modest, married, and has kids. My mom covers her head and prays five times a day, I pray two times a day but I’m still a practicing Muslim.”
According to Ali, one can be a practicing Muslim and a porn star. Aware of the potential conflict, she felt any consequences she might face over her choices would be worth it in the long-term. And since homosexuality is technically illegal in Pakistan, which is trying its damnedest to ban online porn altogether, she intends to film plenty of girl-on-girl action this year, too.

Riaz Haq said...

Rise of #Canada-born #SunnyLeone, massively popular #porn star and most-Googled person in #India. #Bollywood

For four years in a row, the most Googled person in India has been Sunny Leone. Who? The daughter of Indian immigrants to Canada, Leone was a successful pornography star in America before returning to India to launch a movie career in Bollywood, where even kissing on screen is taboo. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi might win elections, he loses to Leone in Google searches. In 2014, the year Modi was elected in a landslide that effectively decimated the secular-socialist Congress Party that had dominated the country until then, he was second to Leone. And in 2015 he was a pathetic 10th.

India is a conservative society and Modi comes from a brand of Hindutva or Hindu nationalism that wants to stop India's drift toward the West and restore traditional standards of sexual modesty. Hindutva hotheads have been known to forcibly marry couples just for hanging out on Valentine's Day because romance before marriage, as far as they are concerned, is Western debauchery. Modi's health minister considers sex education in schools as an invitation to licentiousness and wants to replace it with mandatory yoga classes. So what is Leone doing in Modi's India?

However, to really understand India, the emerging nation, the better question might be: What is Modi doing in Leone's India?

The conventional explanation for the parallel popularity of Modi and Leone might be that India is a "land of contradictions": extreme poverty coexists with extreme wealth; extreme pacifism with extreme violence; extreme veneration of women with extreme disrespect. Hence, Modi, who seems never to have had sex with anyone (he left his wife without consummating his marriage and took a vow of celibacy that plays well with Indian voters), and Leone, who has made a career out of having sex on screen with everyone (men, women, and inanimate objects) are just another one of those Indian dualities. Modi appeals to the chastity-worshipping side of India and Leone the Kama Sutra-practicing side. They are India's yin and yang.

But this explanation misses the tectonic shifts reshaping India's cultural landscape.

All prudish societies typically have an underside that serves as a safety valve for pent up sexual tensions. But Leone is not merely the cyber equivalent of the red light districts of Victorian England — a taboo that libidinous Indian men secretly enjoy via a computer and an internet connection. To be sure, Indian men partake in their share of pornography (six of the world's top 10 cities for pornography downloads are in India), but Leone's appeal is not limited to them.

Her Indian movies, steamy B-grade blockbusters that push the limits of Bollywood (which itself pushes the limits of Indian prudery), are household favorites. Their song-and-dance routines are played at virtually every Indian wedding. In fact, Leone notes, she is "embraced with open arms" at private Indian events. Even wives and sisters eagerly pose with her for pictures. This is in sharp contrast to the Indian-Canadian community in her hometown of Sarnia, Ontario, which has ostracized Leone.

All of this would be less remarkable if Leone made some attempt to hide her past or apologize for it. But she doesn't. To the contrary, in her debut appearance on India's Bigg Boss, a popular reality-TV show, Leone, in a carefully orchestrated marketing move, told the entire country that she was an "adult film entertainer" in America. What's more, instead of saying she was forced into a tawdry career by economic necessity or family need, she nonchalantly asserted that this was her "choice" — meaning that of all her options for making a living, she chose monetizing her body. "I am good at turning a quarter into a dollar," she says.