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02 December 2023

Oscar 2016: Pakistan's Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy wins second golden statue

By Ajanta Paul

Pakistani journalist and filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy's 'A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness' won the best documentary short award at the 88th Academy Awards.

This is the second win for Sharmeen, who previously bagged the Oscar in the same category in 2011 for 'Saving Face'.

The film focuses on Saba Qaiser, a young woman in Pakistan who survived an attempted honour killing by her father and uncle, who felt she had brought shame on their family by marrying someone of whom they disapproved.

Every year, more than 1,000 girls and women are the victims of honor killings in Pakistan, especially in rural areas.

While accepting the award, Sharmeen delivered one of the most powerful speeches of the ceremony. She wasted no time to speak about the power of film to make tangible change in people's lives.

"This is what happens when determined women get together," the filmmaker said. Sharmeen then said that the impact of the film has been so great that Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has decided to change the law of honour killing in the country.

"After watching the film, the PM of Pakistan has decided last week to change the law of honour killing in the country," she said.

The filmmaker has been receiving congratulatory messages and hailed by her countryman.

Politician Imran Khan wrote on Twitter: "Congratulations to Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy for winning her second Oscar. A great achievement &  a proud moment for Pakistan."

Actress Mahira Khan applauded the win, "What a win, what a speech! 'This is what happens when determined women get together' -@sharmeenochinoy so so proud!! #Pakistan #Oscars2016."

JahanAra M Wattoo, head of social media in PPP, exalted in Sharmeen's win, "Proud moment 4 Pakistan,Sharmeen Obaid film in d race 4 Oscars. Violence against women in every shape n form must b stopped .#EmpowerWomen"

Ali Zafar took to Twitter to express his emotion, "So proud of @sharmeenochinoy for bringing back another Oscar for Pakistan. #Oscars."

Dubai resident Desiree Francis, who is a journalist turned PR professional says, "I am ecstatic to see Sharmeen and her team win. Imagine if we had more support, just a wee bit more. Congratulations to Pakistan especially the women, more power to you."

Actress Mawra Hocane congratulated her feat on social media, "Congratz @sharmeenochinoy for getting an #Oscars again... #Pakistan "

PTI member Dr Arif AlviVerified wrote, "Wins her second Oscar @sharmeenochinoy Congratulations. She makes her country proud."