Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy is known for creating socially relevant content with the purpose of raising awareness among the public, particularly women and children. One of her recent efforts is an awareness series called ‘Aagahi’, a public service campaign of 14 short films with the aim to educate women on their legal rights in Pakistan. The campaign, produced by SOC Films in collaboration with Women Action Forum Karachi, has a series of short animated films in Urdu, highlighting key issues confronting women and ways to counter them. It incorporated issues such as domestic violence and abuse, cyber crimes, inheritance and divorce. Also depicted (in one of the shorts) how to file an FIR, if need be.
Recently, the eighth animated short film, ‘Acid Crimes’ from the Aagahi series is released which seeks to inform viewers on the various forms of what constitutes an acid crime, specifically with the intent of harming another human being. The video discusses punishments for convicted offenders, illegal usage and sale of acid and other corrosive chemicals which are punishable by the Pakistani legal system, including a sentence of 14 years jail, life imprisonment, a 1 million rupee fine or all of the above. It also advises on safety measures that can be taken subsequently if involved in an incident. The film ends by providing viewers with contact information for various helplines, women’s shelters, counselling services, and legal support services available to acid attack survivors.
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy has brought home many accolades including the prestigious Oscar trophy twice. The filmmaker is known for creating socially relevant content that raises awareness about prevalent issues faced by the public, especially women and children in our region. The Aagahi series, which aims to educate Pakistani women about their legal rights, has also bagged a nomination at 66th Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity under the ‘Sustainable Development Goals Lions in the Gender Equality’ category.