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Amidst worldwide protests against the death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black unarmed man, at the hands of police, a new debate has begun in Pakistan about casual racism and our attitudes toward people with dark skin. It started with a fan pointing out that while Zara Noor Abbas is advocating for #Blacklivesmatter, she is part of the problem for endorsing skin whitening products.

This debate was taken up by senior BBC journalist Haroon Rashid, who raised the question on Twitter.

"This is a genuine question - can you name me Bollywood/Pakistani stars who have never endorsed a skin lightening product?" he wrote.

While responding to his question, Superstar Mahira Khan revealed that she has been approached to endorse fairness creams ever since she was a VJ but she has always refused to do so.

"Been refusing ever since I was a VJ till now. Never endorsed a skin lightening product," actor responded.

Coke Studio famed singer Momina Mustehsan is also amongst those who claim to have refused to advertise skin whitening products. In a tweet she said:

"Same here. Always turned down all fairness product endorsements. The amount of melanin in your skin has nothing to do with how beautiful you are. If we ALL responsibly refuse whitening endorsements, it might cause a shift in the market. We have the power to change the narrative."

Hareem Farooq and Sanam Saeed also responded that they have never endorsed skin whitening products.