Kashif Hafeez Siddiqui

Gillette’s Shaving event – An eyewitness experience

In Advertisement, Karachi Karachi on April 1, 2010 at 3:22 am

By Faraz Baig :

One of the biggest signs of a society’s bankruptcy is the demise of its social values. Social values are benchmarks of good and bad, acceptable and rejected, desired and detested and so on. So when society derives these values indigenously from within itself, it’s a living society, on the contrary if it depends on external sources for its values, it’s stagnant! What we’re experiencing today in our society is the latter behavior.

We’ve slowly and gradually approached a point where we look towards the west for our benchmarks of good, bad, success and failure, while abandoning those given to us by our Creator, ALLAH (swt). It’s evident in our individual behavior and ubiquitous in our society. It’s a direct result of our society’s submission to the western culture and our ignorance towards our cultural asset.

However, saying so doesn’t mean that our individual has gone so bankrupt that he doesn’t love religion. It’s one thing to ignore something and quite another to not love it. That’s exactly why that despite our lack of application of religion in our personal lives, we’re always in unison against any attempt towards disgracing our religious symbols. Protests against blasphemy are a case in point. The west and its agents try it time and again and keep testing the level of “Ghairat” left in Muslims. They’re relentless in their approach therefore we’re experiencing these incidents more and more.

One such incident was Tuesday’s collective shaving event held by Gillette. The company has been holding such events in other countries and brought this campaign to Pakistan for the first time. As reported from various sources, the event was to break the world record set by India where a few more than 1800 people shaved their faces simultaneously. The idea was to gather 2500 men who’ll do the same at the signal and shave their beards to “bring glory to Pakistan”. Apparently someone from Guinness was also present to verify the validity of the claim. The event was to be held at 6 pm in an ongoing festival of some sort at Karachi Expo center.

This seemingly innocuous event, whose sole aim was manifested to revive patriotism in our youth, was actually an attempt to make a mockery of the sunnah of our beloved prophet RasooluLLAH (saw). Keeping beard is not only the sunnah of RasooluLLAH (saw) and his Sahaba (ra) but also his order to us. Every Muslim child knows this and every adult understands it. But the magic of these multinationals is so profound that they successfully deceived hundreds of young men to scrap this important sunnah from their faces collectively with the stroke of their blades. But were they successful? What followed is a case study of the power of word of mouth and more importantly, the strength of connection of Muslims with one another. An eyewitness account is narrated below verbatim.

At around 2 in the afternoon, I got an sms from a close friend of mine mentioning this event. I quickly asked him to confirm it to me as, with no disrespect to him, I couldn’t believe such an event could be held in broad daylight in the heart of the country which achieved its independence in the name of Islam. I asked a few other sources within some religious circles but they expressed their ignorance. Anyway, it wasn’t before 3 when I could log on to my pc and find the event’s specifics online.

Truly speaking, I was still not sure if the organizers had the courage to actually hold this event, but there was only one way to confirm. I didn’t know what I would do if I’d confirm it but I just managed to convince myself to go to Expo center. I got at the University road gate of Expo center by 4 and it was, to my bewilderment, deserted as if no event was being held! I moved further and as I turned round the corner, saw some hustle and bustle in front of Sir Shah Suleiman road gate.

There was a mob of around 150 mostly bearded men gathered in front of the gate, there were banners mounted on the building’s fence denouncing the event and the organizers. As I grew nearer, it became evident that a lot had happened already. Although there was a mob gathered there, who seemed to belong mostly from religious schools, but also included individuals who didn’t belong to any religious outfit, there were absolutely no signs of riot or chaos.

The mob wasn’t effectively following a leader but it was extremely peaceful. They were chanting slogans demanding stern action against the organizers and that the event be cancelled. As I was approaching the mob, it suddenly began to disperse. On inquiring a gentleman, I was told that the event has been cancelled and the organizers have guaranteed that this promise wouldn’t be broken.

On asking which party he belonged to I was told simply that it didn’t matter as all of the people there had gathered purely for the love of the Sunnah of RasooluLLAH (saw), I was literally humbled by this response. Soon after a middle aged cleric addressed without any loudspeaker and lambasted the organizers for their compliance with the Zionist Multinational companies. He also criticized Gillette for their provocative attempt and demanded that their trade license in Pakistan be cancelled. He later demanded the Supreme Court to take notice of the event and punish the culprits. There was another short speech by another young man and then the cleric spoke again. The religious students boarded their bus in the meanwhile and the mob dispersed soon after…“

Listening to this account and watching the video of the protest has revived my confidence in this Ummah, I’m sure you’d share the sentiment.

If each individual just decides to do whatever is in his capacity, without thinking whether or not it will make a difference, ALLAH would make it easy for him. These were only 100-150 people, ALLAH knows how many would gather if more time was at hand.

But it must be remembered that no enemy raises his eyes towards any nation who guards its ideological borders. We’ve allowed too much influence by the western and Indian media and it’s hurting us badly.If committing a sin collectively is a sin then we’re all guilty of committing the sin of not struggling for establishment of Islam in this country, which ironically was built in the name of Islam. Failure to do so I’m afraid, will result in even greater threats and those may be too much for our weak nation to handle.

May ALLAH save us from such a fate, ameen.

  1. what a ridiculous post. what business is it of yours if people want to shave? this is nothing other than hooliganism disrupting a marketing event. Nobody is forcing you to shave. I would remind you that this country was founded by a clean shaved gentleman. What a disgrace you are to our county.

    As for “Zionist multinational companies”…you are only displaying your ignorance. Gillette is owned by Proctor and Gamble. How is it a zionist entity?

    if you have a brokerage account you can buy stock http://www.google.com/finance?q=NYSE%3APG ) if you buy this stock, will you be a zionist? fool

  2. Glorius and Marvelous job….
    We need to take this job into more advanced levels.
    Time has come to play a more desicive and active roll.

  3. @ Manto

    Commenting negatively on everything which doesn’t suit your ideology of life is very easy, try challenging your own thought process…. and start realizing that this life is only a preamble to the hereafter….
    Your alias tells a lot about your mind set…… if you call yourself a champion of freedom of expression, then you should be ashamed… since you failed to show tolerance.
    You symbolize the bankruptcy of social values of our nation…. People like you are neither ours, nor theirs, since your ilk fails to exhibit values of both systems….. Neither total submission to Allah, nor freedom of expression and tolerance to difference of opinion… stop being a control freak mate!

    @ Faraz Bhai
    Good to see that the Muslims in Pakistan still have resilience

    Although this indeed is a start, but we would have to do more…. We need to join hands together to face the religious corruption, the establishment of Khilfah, and the establishment of the word of Allah tabarak wa tala.

    • um, what does this have to do with freedom of expression? I believe the hooligans are denying gillette their right to have a marketing event. Not the other way around.

      Again, no one is forcing you guys to shave. Under what pretext can you force guys to keep a beard?

  4. What a sheer waste of time by these guys. Everything and anything that does not conform to their twisted, bigoted moral values is dubbed as against Islam.

    Have you asked yourself of people like who were protesting, whether they are good human beings or not. How many have followed simple traffic rules? How many have followed the concept of ‘sila-e-rehmi’. Branding everything as zionist plot is so easy. Just bring in a truckload of brainwashed, underage youth and protest (in the name of Islam)…. what a way to help this country grow.

    Kindly grow up and let our countrymen have peace of mind.

    • yea sheer waste of time by those Muft Khoras who reached to the venue for shave. Salay Bhikari!

  5. […] and brought this campaign to Pakistan for the first time…. Read the original post:  Gillette’s Shaving event – An eyewitness experience Tags: campaign, countries, first, for-the, pakistan, society, Today […]

  6. بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
    زمانہ کی قسم ہے (۱) بے شک انسان گھاٹے میں ہے (۲) مگر جو لوگ ایمان لائے اور نیک کام کیے اور حق پر قائم رہنے کی اور صبر کرنے کی آپس میں وصیت کرتے رہے
    (۳)

    This was the only reason… Enjoining the right and prohibiting the wrong is an integral part of Imaan. An order by RasooluLLAH (saw) himself…

  7. My comment at

    http://teeth.com.pk/blog/2010/04/02/to-shave-or-not-to-shave/comment-page-1#comment-246853

    I read the whole post of Doctor ‘T’ & Raza Qureshi & found it a master piece of self developed conspiracies & biased attitudes; the term used for these types of pseudo intellectuals is “Liberal fascist”.

    They are afraid with people “disagreement with their agreement”, It’s my right to disagreed with any opinion/ event in a peaceful manner. This is one sided biased story & there is a need to come true picture. The above post is full of lies & distort.

    Shaving is a personal matter but if it moves towards collective wisdom, efforts & expression then it should be resisting because darhi is the sunnah of all prophets & included in Sha’air-e-Islam & that collective act will be consider as insult of sha’air.

    The whole process of disagreement was completely peaceful; those who are disagreed used all possible ways to register their reservations,

    1.They discussed & raised the issue with expo center management

    2. They used power of digital communication by using SMS to general Karachi citizens as well as brand team of Gillette. No one gave any threat to anyone; those who SMS the brand team or called just show their reservation, grievances & disappointment with show & request management to hold that program. Its false propaganda by the author of that post management was threatened. If public reaction is threat then what is areal threat, need to define.

    3.A complete peaceful demonstration was also took place, in which all walk of life was participated, madressa students to IT engineers, students of college & universities to the teachers & businessmen, in short representation of society was there, its wrong that only madressa students were their. During this demonstration even a single glass was not broken.

    4.What happened inside, it was simple that those Muftas who come there looted & involved in all sort of torphor, basically they were disappointed with management of event.
    Basically these liberal fascist are the mouth piece of Western values, but when they defend or propagate Western values they completely ignored their values of tolerance. In their perspective all those who are disagreed with their so called misguided liberal views are Mullahs.

    If Mullah is the name of resistance against liberal fascist then I am proud to be Mullah.

  8. Shaving yourself or having someone shave for you is an entirely personal choice.

    Why don’t you go to hairdressers and stop barbers from shaving? Why don’t you go to superstores and stop store owners from selling Gillette blades?

    The problem with our youth from religious schools is that they perceive multinationals as a threat to Islam. How innocent of them.

    Gillette or any other MNC has nothing to do with Islam. They want to sell products, man. Let them.

    Mind your own business. How difficult is that?

    You want to keep a beard? Keep one. Who cares?

    Please don’t think it’s your religious duty to condemn everything that you think is non-Islamic.

    I understand keeping a beard in a sunnat, but so is not interfering in matters not related to you. What business is it of yours to dismiss what is not related to you?

    Where is your adherence to sunnat then?

    There is more to Islam than keeping a beard.

    Islam is a religion of moderation.

    Let’s not be extremists and march in the streets because all it does is waste time.

    Do something productive.

  9. Islam is submission, if something is against your will and is in Islam, you have to do it…….. like it or not

    We grow beards in confirmity with what rasoolullah sallallahu elaihe wasallam teachings and the course of action he had set for us……. we are not ashamed of being his followers ……. who told you that these guys are not already doing what is more to islam than growing a beard……

    try and get into other’s shoes bro……. how about burning Pakistani flag….. or people spitting on your photograph ….. would these acts still be personal…. the event was symbolic and people reacted …… whats wrong with that

    from the mimbar, molvi sahab has been crying out lound for ages that the beard is kept in the love of Rasullah sallallahu elaihe wasallam, as a symbolic differenciation, so plz grow beards…….. but people keep rejecting the symbol of Islam saying it is their choice…….. these people had to get out and protest to show that this is not the nation’s choice

    Aai samajh?

  10. Again..a fine example of how the Mullah wants to control how much of hair I or someone else has on their face….

    We have much, much bigger problems to worry about but it is easy for the Mullah’s feeble mind to focus on these issues…

    Yes, keeping a beard is a Sunnah but there is NOT A SINGLE credible Islamic injunction that declares that beards are either Farz or Wajib. Furthermore, it is a very minor sunnah when compared to other more important Sunnahs and has no social impact in the positive of negative. Which is exactly why it has been declared that only the level of pious-ness will be a barometer for Man’s closeness to Allah SWT and NOT the length of his beard….

    even non Muslims can and do keep beards……it means absolutely nothing.

    I speak as a bearded man myself!

    what a totally idiotic and senseless post!

  11. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by adnanshekhani: http://bit.ly/c0OPKn power of consumerism and example of stupidity by #gillette @abdulkarim @alizafarshah @khizerhayat…

  12. What angers me is that the so called bastions of Islam , ignore the fundamentals and go after small matters .

    First of all , the ones who were getting shaved in the show were those who shave regularly at their own leisure . No one amongst them was a Maulana being forcefully shaved by the zionists companies . So I dont see any point in stopping such parade . If you have to stop , stop the youths who are shaving inside their homes and at the barber shops .

    Secondly , within this span of time you see bill boards of naked women spurning up and call for fashion shows being given . No attempt is made to hurl any of these or to remove any of these billboards . This is Fahashee and this is what maulanas should try to stop .

    Third and the most important point comprising on many issues is that . RIBA is HARAM in QURAN , and ALLAH declares a war against it . Where is the ban on Riba ? Why dont I see you guys protesting against RIBA ? Why dont I see you guys gathering around banks and hurling their activities .?

    Why dont I see you guys in battle arrays against the zionist armies that have entered our boundaries ?

    Hazrat Isa spoke this truth when he adressed the pharisees of Yahudis :

    That you guys waste time talking about ants , while you swallow whole camels .

    • Assalamoallaikum,

      Now that you have identified these vice… It would be nice on your part to start working against it…

  13. Kindly make Yasser (YLH) @ Paktea house clear that Kashifiat is not me but you, he thinks anybody who criticize him is tanzeel – poor chap he’s!

    Thread name: Faisal Shahzads Radicalization

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