LAHORE — The once-fabled dancing girls of Lahore, the capital of Pakistani Punjab, are fast disappearing.
The performers have left the city’s red light district, Heera Mandi, also known as the Diamond Market, that lies in the shadow of the Moghul-era Badshahi Mosque.
“I have lived all my life here,” said Iqbal Hussain, a painter and doyen of Heera Mandi, having been born there several decades ago. “I have seen all the phases. It used to be a beautiful area but now it is disappearing.
Patrick Cockburn and Issam Ahmed in Lahore
Friday, 12 December 2008
The dancing girls of Lahore, the cultural capital of Pakistan, are on strike in protest against the tide of Talibanisation that is threatening to destroy an art form that has flourished since the Mughal empire.
The strike, which is supported by the theatres where they perform, was sparked by the decision of Lahore High Court last month to ban the Mujra, the graceful and elaborate dance first developed in the Mughal courts 400 years ago, on the grounds that it is too sexually explicit. Continue reading
Posted in sex, society, Talibanisation, Urban, Walled City, Women
Tagged dancing, girls, Heera, Islam, Lahore, Mandi, mujra, prostitutes, prostitution, sex, Taliban