Rabia Anum Obaid Walks Out of a Show Due To Mohsin Abbas Haider

When she discovered that Mohsin Abbas Haider, who has been charged with domestic abuse, was also invited, Rabia Anum Obaid politely left the program set.

The fact that the entertainment business and fraternities have short memories is one of their major knocks. After a few short years, and in some circumstances, even months, one can recover completely from any kind of charges. Until, of course, someone actually does something.

Aliza Sultan, Feroze Khan’s ex-wife who charged him with violence and dishonesty, may have lately received support from the entertainment community, but posts on social media are distinct from addressing someone in person, and it takes genuine guts and determination to hold to your beliefs.

We witnessed it when Iqra Aziz withdrew from a project with Feroze, and more subsequently when TV anchor Rabia Anum Obaid left the set of Nida Yasir’s show even though actor Mohsin Abbas Haider, who was also accused of harassing his ex-wife, had also been called. Her choice to leave the show not only sets a new standard but also establishes a benchmark for anyone willing to support victims of domestic abuse.

On Yasir’s Good Morning Pakistan on Tuesday, Haider and Fiza Ali made an appearance. Rabia Anum Obaid was also called. She did, however, tell the host at the beginning of the show that she had only been told about Ali’s participation and not Haider’s.  “There are some mistakes that never leave us, and today I’m not going to make that mistake. There’s an issue I’ve taken a stand for which is domestic abuse and I feel like if this minute effort of mine tomorrow saves my daughter or even my friends, then I have to do it.”

She stated that she doesn’t want to be a participant in the show for the reasons she gave. Rabia Anum said “I know how responsible you [Nida] are and I love you for that, but I think If today I sit through the entire show, I will not be able to face my friends, my colleagues and all of those girls for whom I might have to take a stand for in the future, for whom I’ve already raised my voice. So, to take care of that I will not be a part of this show, I’m sorry.”

Although her abrupt exit from the live episode—which was later removed from the portion posted online—stunned many viewers, it was a justified response to a person who had been charged with domestic abuse. It doesn’t matter if the claims were proven or if the case is still pending. Regardless of the outcome of the case, Rabia Anum Obaid showed us that it is OK to politely leave and avoid being in the same vicinity with someone who has been accused of sexually harassing a woman.

Rabia Anum Obaid demonstrated how to consider female friends and family members by taking a position and distancing oneself from a situation involving someone who is facing such serious accusations while doing so in a respectful and composed manner. We hope that her action has opened the door for others to follow suit when necessary.

Obaid did something that many people, particularly in the entertainment sector, refrain from doing out of concern about jeopardising relationships with powerful individuals. Society must take responsibility for normalising quiet in situations where speaking up and taking action are necessary to ensure justice.

Some online commenters appear to be upset with the manner in which Obaid left the show, but here are some lessons that her behaviour taught us: learn to respectfully assert your boundaries; there’s no shame in leaving a room when someone makes you uncomfortable; there’s no shame in standing your ground regarding a serious issue like domestic abuse; be considerate of the women around you; take a position for the future, and be brave.

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