In recent years, influencers have done some truly batshit things for clout, like purposely crash planes or film dead bodies. Now, as we hurtle towards a mass extinction event caused in part by inordinate deforestation, they’re burning down forests. Great x
A Pakistani influencer named Nosheen Syed – aka “Dolly” – is now facing charges for allegedly setting a forest fire in the Margalla Hills while shooting a TikTok video in Pakistan’s capital city Islamabad. The video was tastefully captioned “fire erupts wherever I am”, and shared with her 11 million followers.
Following the incident, the influencer was reported to police for breaking wildlife and environment protection laws.
Pakistan is currently in the midst of an extreme heatwave which is having a devastating effect on the local environment. Some parts of the country have reached up to 50 degrees celsius.
Rina Satti, chair of Islamabad’s Wildlife Management Board, said on Twitter that the video was part of a “disturbing and disastrous trend” on TikTok. “Young people desperate for followers are setting fire to our forests during this hot and dry season!” she wrote.
Disturbingly, Dolly is not the only Pakistani TikToker who has been accused of burning trees for views. Just a few weeks ago, Pakistani media reported that a man had been arrested in Abbottabad for deliberately setting fire to a portion of a forest to make a TikTok video.
Dolly has since posted a video responding to the claims, insisting that she did not set the fire herself but instead found one that was already ablaze. She also said that the location in the video was not near the Margalla Hills but at the side of a highway in Haripur.