Trigger warning: rape jokes, kidnapping, assault, sexual harassment
Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) politician Nabil Gabol has proved that one can be a legislator in the highest offices and yet resort to making extremely offensive, misogynist jokes whenever they can.
Twitter users have decried PPP for claiming that they are a progressive party, but providing important positions to men like Gabol who make misogynist and degrading comments about women on public platforms. A clip from a YouTube podcast, The Pakistan Experience with host Shehzad Ghias, is going viral on Twitter where Gabol was a guest and where he said: “When rape is imminent, then just enjoy it.”
To which activists like Soul Sister’s Founder Kanwal Ahmed responded with “Gross”.
Journalist Zebunnisa Burki shared the clip on her Twitter page and lamented the fact that men in powerful positions are never held accountable for talking about women in a vulgar manner like he has.
Founder of ‘Digital Rights Foundation’ and lawyer Nighat Dad criticized Gabol on her Twitter account for casually using rape as a punchline because of the way it malign’s the struggles of survivors of sexual violence, and especially called for politicians to be held accountable for their words because they hold positions of power and influence.
Dad also shared a clip from Gabol’s previous interview with Youtuber Nadir Ali which took place in 2022, where the politician was seen making sexually suggestive comments about women politicians.
In the same interview, a user shared a clip of Gabol openly claiming that he kidnaps girls and takes them under his possession.
Recently, Gabol had given an interview to Nadir Ali, where a Twitter users shamed him for his sexual comments about the TikTok star Ayesha, and for asking for her number.
Writer and columnist Fatima Bhutto shared the clip from Gabol’s interview with Ghias, and in the caption she condemned his comments for exposing the ‘criminal mindset of the Sindh government.”
Bakhtawar Bhutto, the sister of PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, condemned Gabol on Monday morning in a tweet.
His (repulsive) rhetoric belongs to his individual only & is in noway a representation of our party. Incase it wasn’t already abundantly obvious- we absolutely & unequivocally stand for the rights & protection of women. Misogyny has no space in our religion nor our party.”
However, users demanded that Gabol be removed from the party, calling the tweet a tone-deaf response to criticism.
Minister of Climate Change Sherry Rehman has responded to the controversy in a tweet saying that strict action was underway.