The award-winning Pakistani film Dukhtar attracted a large and distinguished audience at its screening at the UN headquarters on Wednesday evening.
Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Dr Maleeha Lodhi organised this side event in the Trusteeship Council Chamber during the 61th annual session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
Lodhi in her opening remarks said that the Pakistani film industry’s revival is being spearheaded by young filmmakers, including women, who are producing films on diverse topics, be it entertainment or social issues.
The ambassador introduced Khawar Mumtaz, chairperson of Pakistan's National Commission on the Status of Women (NCSW), who is also the mother of the lead actress in the film, Samiya Mumtaz. The NCSW chairperson briefly talked about how her daughter developed interest in acting but that Samiya’s main interest remained in organic farming. Mumtaz said that her daughter was a dedicated actress and only acted in movies with an inspirational message.
Film director Afia Nathaniel expanded on the making of her film. She said that the film was about a mother's love and sacrifice to save her daughter from child marriage. She also said that the film had a universal message and its exhibition at the UN will help build bridges and bring people together.
The event was attended by a large number of diplomats, UN Secretariat officials and the Pakistani diaspora. The Deputy Executive Director of UN women, Lakshmi Puri, was also present.
Last year, Oscar-winning Pakistani filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy's documentary “A Girl in the River” was screened to coincide with CSW.