Hadsa, a Pakistani drama series that depicts the ordeal of a rape survivor, is back on air after a legal battle with PEMRA, the media regulatory authority. The drama, which stars Hadiqa Kiani, Alyy Khan, and Juggan Kazim, among others, was banned in August 2023 for allegedly being inspired by a real-life motorway rape case that shook the nation in 2020. However, the Islamabad High Court suspended the ban on September 18, 2023, and allowed the drama to resume its broadcast on Geo TV.
Hadsa Drama back to Screens
The Plot of Hadsa Drama
Hadsa follows the story of Taskeen, a confident and successful woman who is brutally raped by two men while travelling with her son to a wedding. The drama shows how Taskeen struggles to cope with the trauma and stigma of being a rape victim, and how she fights for justice against the powerful and influential culprits. The drama also explores the impact of the incident on Taskeen’s family, especially her husband and son, who face social pressure and threats from the rapists.
The Controversy Surrounding Hadsa Drama
Hadsa sparked a controversy when it aired its fourth episode, which showed the rape scene in a dark and disturbing manner. Many viewers and activists accused the drama of sensationalizing and exploiting the motorway rape case, which involved a woman who was gang-raped by two robbers in front of her children on a highway near Lahore. They claimed that the drama was insensitive to the feelings of the real victim and millions of other survivors of sexual violence in Pakistan.
PEMRA, the Pakistani Electronic Media Regulatory Authority, took notice of the complaints and issued a ban on Hadsa on August 30, 2023. PEMRA stated that the drama violated its code of conduct and ethics by showing objectionable content that could harm the public interest and morality.
The Legal Victory of Hadsa Drama
The producers of Hadsa challenged the ban in the Islamabad High Court, arguing that the drama was not based on any specific case, but was a fictional story that aimed to raise awareness and inspire courage among rape survivors. They also claimed that they had not been given a fair hearing by PEMRA before passing the order.
The Islamabad High Court agreed with their plea and suspended the ban on September 18, 2023. The court observed that PEMRA had not followed due process and had violated the right of hearing of the producers. The court also noted that only the objectionable part of the drama should be prohibited or modified, and not the entire play.
The director of Hadsa, Wajahat Rauf, expressed his gratitude to the court and his fans on Instagram. He wrote: “The Honourable Islamabad High Court has allowed our fictional character Taskeen to tell her inspirational story of getting justice for herself and all other survivors like her. Taskeen’s story is about how she became a survivor instead of a victim with a resolute struggle for justice. We are grateful that viewers will get to see the story in its entirety.”
The Mixed Reactions to Hadsa Drama
Hadsa has received mixed reactions from the audience since its return to TV screens. Some viewers have praised the drama for its powerful storytelling and performances, especially by Hadiqa Kiani, who plays Taskeen. They have appreciated the drama for highlighting the issues faced by rape survivors in Pakistan, such as social stigma, legal hurdles, and lack of support.
However, some viewers have remained critical of the drama for its controversial theme and depiction. They have argued that the drama is still exploiting a sensitive topic for ratings and entertainment. They have also questioned the need for showing graphic details of the rape scene, which could trigger trauma and distress among survivors and viewers.
What Do You Think?
Hadsa is undoubtedly one of the most talked-about dramas in Pakistan right now. It has generated a lot of debate and discussion on social media and other platforms. Whether you love it or hate it, you cannot ignore it.
What do you think about Hadsa? Do you think it is a bold and brave attempt to portray a harsh reality? Or do you think it is an insensitive and irresponsible attempt to cash in on a tragedy? Share your views and feedback with us in the comments section below.