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Mahershala Ali’s Oscar win triggers religious debate in Pakistan

Published: Updated:

Pakistan’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Maleeha Lodhi, faced condemnation for celebrating Mahershala Ali’s Oscar win as the first to be achieved by a Muslim actor.

After hailing the ‘Muslim’ win on Twitter, Lodhi swiftly deleted the tweet after she faced anger from Pakistani users, who pointed out that Ali is a member of the Muslim Ahmadi sect, which is different that the two predominant Muslim sects of Sunnis and Shiites.

According to the Pakistani constitution, Ahmadis are not considered as Muslims.

Ali is the first ever Muslim to win an Oscar for an acting role, after the likes of Pakistani documentary filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Iranian feature director Asghar Farhadi won the award for other categories.

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