By Javeed Ali

Zaira Wasim is an 18-year-old girl from our vicinity in Srinagar. She rose to fame after she acted in a Bollywood blockbuster movie ‘Dangal’ with seasoned actor Aamir Khan. Subsequently, she performed lead roles in ‘Secret Superstar’ and upcoming movie ‘The Sky is Pink’.

The kind of glamour and glitter she got at this tender age has captivated the masses. Bollywood is famous worldwide particularly in India. So anyone who gets entry in Bollywood becomes the symbol of elegance. It brings everything from money to glory to any entrant. People crave for their presence. They associate everything in their lives to their favourite film celebrities.

Zaira got more than which a girl of her age can aspire for. Her movies were doing incredibly great and she received numerous accolades like Filmfare Award, National Film Award and National Child Award for Exceptional Achievement. Thousands of artistes in India struggle to reach to that level. She became celebrity at the age where youngsters grapple with their career choices. She got the phenomenal start to her career at the very young age of 15. What more a person would want than this remarkable start to her life.

But Zaira bid adieu to all the stardom saying that she is feeling dissociated from her Creator. In her Facebook post, she revealed that her association with her religion is more important than to the Worldly desires. She penned down a long post which is full of Quranic verses and Prophetic traditions. She is so determined in her decision that one gets magnetized in her words.

Some people may confront that there are some other Muslim celebrities in film industry then what hindered Zaira from continuing her career there. Well, there is a huge difference between a non-practising Muslim and a practising Muslim. We can stay in Bollywood with a Muslim name but staying there as a practicing Muslim is a Herculean task. 

There are do’s and don’ts in our religion revealed to us through the Holy Quran and the teachings of Prophet Mohammad (SAW) which we need to perform by letter & spirit. We have a firm belief that whatever have be ordained upon us are for our own wellbeing and for the betterment of the humanity as a whole. 

We cannot even shake hands with Na-Mahram so how can we work in an environment where kisses & hugs are a normal routine. It’s quite difficult to safeguard our Imaan (faith) there. A person there has to mingle with the people of opposite sex and with the passage of time he loses connection with his Creator as one gets lost in the world of fascination and glitz.

Practcising our religion doesn’t make us regressive. In fact, it gives meaning to our life and we work vigorously for the reformation of our society in general and the nation in particular. It is only through the Islamophobia propaganda campaign by the Zionists that Islam has been projected in a bad light. Otherwise, Islam is a religion of peace which only teaches love and kindness. Have we ever thought why is crime rate increasing in the World with every passing day? It is only because we have fractured our relationship with our Creator. If we strengthen our association with our Almighty, it will thoroughly cleanse our polluted society.

Zaira! Being our local girl, I felt more excited by your recent post than your journey in film industry. I was so astonished that how can a girl of age 18 write such an inspiring and spiritual statement. I got the printout of your post and it is first time in my life that I printed any social media post and reserved the same for my library archives. 

You are perfectly right that we need to work for our ultimate aim. We are not here for the materialistic gains. They are only the medium not the target. The main ambition is to get closeness to our Creator and to snap anything which becomes an obstacle in achieving the ultimate goal.

Zaira! You are an inspiration for every one of us who do everything possible to make our life perfect but give least attention for the perfection of our hereafter. You taught us that being in limelight doesn’t give contentment but attaining salvation brings serenity in our lives. You were at the top of your Bollywood career but you responded to the call of the Almighty by renouncing the film industry as you found it to be unfit for performing our religious obligations. 

Commonly, a youngster of your age yearns for more luxuries and wealth in his or her life. They do everything to flaunt people but you left behind everything and taught us an important lesson that Worldly desires have no value and significance and should be sacrificed for our hereafter which is more beautiful and calm than this Duniya as Imam Ali (A.S.) has said: “This world is like a serpent, so soft to touch, but so full of lethal poison. Unwise people are allured by it and drawn towards it, and wise men avoid it and keep away from its poisonous effects.”

May Allah Almighty always keep Zaira and all of us on the path of righteousness and saintliness….Ameen