Mon, Aug 12, 2013 - Page 5 News List

FEATURE: Pakistani man threatened with death over mustache

AFP, PESHAWAR, Pakistan

It also had a word of advice for elected leaders, who three times in the past have been deposed by military coups ... led by the only three generals in the country with mustaches.

“Never appoint a mustachioed chief of the army staff or a chief justice if you wish to govern in peace,” it warned.

Richard McCallum, the author of Hair India — A Guide to the Bizarre Beards and Magnificent Moustaches of Hindustan,” says mustaches are also popular in the Indian military and the police.

“Men with mustaches seem to be considered to command more respect, are considered more virile, more manly and a little bit older,” he told reporters.

“When you get away from metro areas, India is still a patriarchal place. Men are men and the men like to show off and preen,” he added.

However, Afridi’s wife and 10 children are less keen.

“Sometimes my family tell me: ‘Cut it, it would be better if you lived with us.’ I can leave my family, I can leave Pakistan, but I can never cut my mustache again,” he said.

So his dream is to find political asylum or represent Pakistan at an international competition, if only he can get a visa.

However, he has a way to go. An Indian holds the record for the world’s longest mustache at 4.29m.

Ram Singh Chauhan has even appeared in Bollywood films and had a cameo in the 1983 James Bond film Octopussy.

“I’m trying to move my family abroad. To America, Canada, Britain or even to Dubai but I need asylum,” Afridi told reporters.

“I don’t like smoking. I’m not fond of snuff, or drinking. This is the only choice in my life. I’d even sacrifice food, but not the mustache. It’s my life. It’s not part of my life. It is my life,” he said.

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