Amir an Iranian drunkard, would frequently beat his wife Somayeh and then lock her up in his room. It took Somayeh years to gather the strength to ask him for a divorce post which he started threatening her with acid. Despite such threats, she stood firm by her decision, perhaps underestimating the cannibal her man could be. One night as Somayeh and Rana lay asleep, Amir crept up to their side and poured acid all over them. They sustained severe burns and were left disfigured for the most part. Somayeh’s eyes, which rested in peaceful sleep were never to see the light of day again, the acid claiming them forever. Even Rana lost an eye.
Usually I’m not the one to point to feminist issues, but such hideousness is unmistakably an outcome of overtly emphasized gender roles. There is so much of violence today that it makes me cringe. Women empowerment has become a political propaganda, exercised with flair and in those areas where it least matters. At the same time, areas that are sorely in need of such reform keep turning barbaric by the day. Somayeh’s father sold off his land to pay off their medical expenses while Amir presumably roams free. Not that any punishment could ever make up for her loss, but if it saves another girl from ending up with a similar fate, it’s worth everything!
The story is indeed infuriatingly heart wrenching. Yet it holds immense potential for drawing inspiration for a greater good. As inhumane the crime is, the above picture of the victims is one of hope and love. Somayeh says that they kiss each other for no one likes to kiss them anymore. As long as they’re together, it’s their least concern. Apparently, love doesn’t require a pretty face. A pretty heart can suffice, but only if we’d bother. There’s so much of hate based on the color of one’s skin that I often wonder if its a scared face that’s worse or a scarred soul. Thanks to Somayeh, I finally got my answer.