You probably would have heard about the services of Ghulam Mustafa Khar as the former Chief Minister and Governor of Punjab representing Pakistan Peoples Party at the national level among the general masses. But there is an inside story revealed by his ex-wife, the social activist, Tehmina Durrani who has authored her famous book ‘Feudal Lord’ creating a wave of surprise and despair in the conservative society of Pakistan highlighting social injustice and abuse of women and children. If you wish to dive deeper into the life of Tehmina Durrani, the book says it all and in this article, we are going to provide an overview of her autobiography presenting her life experience alongside the quasi autocrat of his region.
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If you really want to see the transformation into an individual’s personality, Tehmina Durrani is the epitome of becoming a fighter for women and children’s rights. Born on February 18, 1953 in Karachi, Tehmina Durrani comes from an affluent family background being the daughter of Former PIA Managing Director and Governor State Bank of Pakistan Shahkar Ullah Durrani. She was married to Anees Khan. However, their marriage did not last for long as she got separated from Khan to start her new life along with the former chief minister and governor of Punjab, Ghulam Mustafa Khar.
The years spent along with Khar turned out to transform her life as she was able to discover the prejudice in the minds of having against the have nots and the manner they manhandle women and children using a distorted interpretation of religion giving them supremacy over all others. Despite her patience, their wedding did not last for long as she was physically, mentally, and sexually abused by her husband while they were together. She got so disturbed with her experience that she finally decided to raise her voice against patriarchal atrocities faced by women and children alike where they are forced to remain silent and remain an object to attain pleasure for men.
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Her first book titled ‘My Feudal Lord’ became the voice for all the women suffering in the hands of patriarchal thinking and social injustice and resultantly gained widespread attention from the different strata of conservative society.
Tehmina Durrani Foundation
Another transformation came into her life after meeting the renowned social activist and philanthropist, Abdul Sattar Edhi. Her meetings and interactions with this guiding light helped her realize the actual purpose of her life and then she took on the responsibility of continuing the social welfare and serving the poor and afflicted sections of the society which was being done by the Edhi Foundation. Her endeavors paved the way for establishing her own Tehmina Durrani Foundation with the sole purpose of serving humanity based on the ideology of Edhi transforming Pakistan into a social welfare state. Her contributions are acclaimed and recognized as she continues to inspire the young philanthropists to provide food and shelter to people who are living hand to mouth and find it hard to make ends meet under the prevailing inflation and unequal distribution of wealth.
A Mirror to the Blind: Autobiography Drafted by Tehmina Durrani
‘A Mirror to The Blind’ covers the life achievements of Abdul Sattar Edhi, an autobiography drafted by Tehmina Durrani after taking consent from Edhi sb to record his journey as an inspiration for upcoming generations. The book in itself serves the purpose of leading a selfless life and living to serve the poor and stranded sectors of our society. Nevertheless, our prime focus here would be the introduction of her book revealing the hidden persona of feudal lords gaining advantage from the silenced and suppressed sections of our society.
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The book was published by Vanguard Books owned by Najam Sethi in the year 1991 and brought a storm of criticism as it unraveled a completely opposite persona of the charismatic governor and chief minister of Punjab, Ghulam Mustafa Khar. The book is basically an autobiographical account of the manner Tehmina Durrani was inhumanely treated by her husband and tortured physically, emotionally and mentally. In her own words, she was raped by her husband leading to the birth of their children. In other words, she signified a lack of care for the interest and expectations of a woman in a patriarchal society in which we are living where men consider themselves supreme in the name of religion. Thus, they misinterpret and use Islam to subjugate women and children before them and justify their manhandling as a source of instruction for the less learned.
About the Bestseller Book: My Feudal Lord
Tehmina has declared Khar as a sociopath who changes his personality in accordance with the situation and the consequent role demanded from him. The book highlights the dissolution of a woman’s identity losing her name and taking on the name of her husband and once that is changed, she comes under the complete control and command of her husband. She has no right to raise her voice and can never question the instruction of male counterparts. Although Durrani preferred to find some temperate solution to deal with this menace but the situation started to worsen and resultantly, Durrani applied to get divorced from Khar after spending fourteen years physical and mental abuse as portrayed in her writings. The book is basically divided into three different sections starting from the chapter titled ‘Lion of Punjab’ where she highlights the atrocities she had to bear for being a woman and thus discriminated and suppressed physically, mentally and sexually. According to Durrani’s own words, she was raped by Khar who got her pregnant giving birth to their child. In other words, there is no concept of mutual consent in the life of a woman specially as s wife of a feudal lord who is considered as the supreme authority. Due to the same reason, he ruined the life of his first wife, Shelly.
The second part titled as the ‘Law of Jungle’ started to develop courage in the heart of a suppressed lady bearing the atrocities of a sociopath as they immigrated to London during a political turbulence in Pakistan. Tehmina was very close to taking the bold step. However, her own family came in the way by warning her not to take such an action as this would simply disconnect her from her own parents. As the final part is titled ‘Lioness’, Tehmina Durrani got the courage to finally file a case in court to get divorce from Khar to start living a life based on spiritual grounds, serving the humanity under the guiding principles of Prophet and fulfilling the legacy of Abdul Sattar Edhi by setting up her own foundation.