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Imran Khan and his divorce: Why is it a private matter?

Marriages, divorces, and scandals have always been the favorite topics of not only our media but the masses as well. Bloggers extensively express their views, while supporters use them to win the combative arguments against their opponents.  The scenario experienced was no different, as soon as the news broke about the divorce of PTI chief Imran Khan and his former wife Reham Khan. Trends were developed on social media and surely it would have been a matter of discussion in your office, classroom and home for the next couple of hours.

Indeed divorces are painful, and in the series of tweets Imran Khan expressed his grief and requested everyone to respect their privacy. What bothers me here is that alike the separation of any common couple, is it really a private matter for Imran Khan only? I may be shocked by the decision of divorce and agree with the point of not politicizing their separation, but even I may have disagreements on Imran Khan calling it a private matter.

A person in public domain cannot claim privacy. The ten-month history of Mr. Khan’s marriage shows that, the stories about his secret marriage, then announcement, rumors about marriage and now divorce. All these issues have been a vital interest for the journalists and public. But even so if we argue that media and public responses to your marriage have been morally unethical, history shows that Imran khan himself had made it a public affair. Days after a number of rumors about the secret marriage to Reham Khan starting doing the rounds, while speaking to reporters at Heathrow airport Imran had said “I am going to Pakistan to share good news about my marriage with the nation. I have nothing to hide.” Just like divorce, marriage is a personal matter, if Khan had decided to involve the nation in the happiness then I guess marriage was not a private issue.

Secondly, if we admit marrying Reham was Khan’s individual matter but announcing it openly from a container, whose purpose was to topple the existing government, was also strange. I think rigging is completely a public affair, and the containers were placed to resolve a political and public affair of rigging.

Thirdly alike the news of marriage, the update of divorce was again announced by a political entity associated with PTI. Earlier announcing the divorce to the media, PTI spokesman Naeem-ul-Haq said that “the couple had mutually agreed to the divorce”. The spokesperson is only liable to talk on the issues of the party. When the news is being circulated through a proper channel of PTI then it does not remain a private issue anymore.

Public sentiments are greatly associated with the decisions and lifestyles of famous personalities. Mr. Khan has always been an ideal for the youth of this country. People have been imitating his lifestyle long before he achieved success in the 1992 world cup. Many would be happy with the divorce but most of his followers are still distressed. The feelings of supporters can be gauged through the results of local body elections held recently. The huge loss of PTI in the local body clearly shows how this divorce has had an adverse effect on the politics of the PTI.

Though it has been a week since the divorce but it is still a hot topic for journalists and masses. However if Imran Khan still wants to keep it private, he should refrain from demonstrating a harsh altitude and commenting on the questions related to his divorce.

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