Months after ‘Pawri girl’ Dananeer Mobeen, yet another Pakistani social media influencer is at the centre of discussion but for all the wrong reasons. An Instagram influencer, named Susan Khan, uploaded a video of her birthday party in Lahore where she was seen keeping a sedated lioness chained to a sofa, where people were touching the animal as they pleased.
The video, which was uploaded on Sunday, has gone viral, with people attacking Susan for using a wild animal as a party prop. After facing a barrage of criticism, she deleted the video from her Instagram account. But by then the damage was already done.
In a message posted by an organization called ‘Project Save Animals’, Susan’s actions were strongly condemned. “It’s ironic how humans are the first ones to forget humanity. Animals are not decor that you can use to show your wealth and status at events. You DO NOT get to violate another being at the expense of your leisure…” the message read.
The message raised further questions about the ethical impact of Susan’s actions. “How would you feel if someone sedated you, chained you up and thrust you in an environment with thousands of screaming people? …With countless cubs and lions being mistreated in Pakistan, we cannot afford to showcase behaviour that normalizes this atrocity.”
The video has invited a huge backlash from the influencer. Countless people are now demanding legal action against Susan, while the aforementioned animal organization has appealed for a petition to be signed against her.
Most Instagram users termed the video appalling and horrific. One user said that the government must take action against her and pass stricter laws so that such incidents aren’t repeated.
Some even questioned if people who are involved in such acts should even be called influencers. “What an excuse for a human being - no understanding, no compassion, no sense of right, wrong or animal justice - that’s the social influencer?? This is criminal abuse,” wrote one user.