Award-winning Afia Nathaniel’s feature film Dukhtar screened at the United Nations on Wednesday evening attracted a large audience, according to sources.
Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Dr Maleeha Lodhi organised this as a side event in the Trusteeship Council Chamber during the 61th annual session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
Ambassador 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. Mumtaz said that her daughter was a dedicated actress and only acted in movies with an inspirational message.
Film director Afia Nathaniel said that the film is about a mother’s love and sacrifice to save her daughter from a child marriage. She also said that the film has 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 also screened to coincide with CSW.