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March 4, 2018

Artistes ask govt to revive entertainment industry in KP


March 4, 2018

PESHAWAR: The artistes here on Saturday asked the government to take steps for the revival of the entertainment industry in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. 

They were speaking at a function that was held to mark the Music Freedom Day. 

Actors, singers, musicians and a large number of youth and music loving people attended the event. 

The Takhleeq Development Foundation, an organisationworking for promotion of art and rights of artistes, in collaboration with the Cultural Journalists Forum, had organised the event.

The artistes noted that the entertainment industry had been hit hard during the long reign of militancy. 

They blamed the successive governments for the poor financial condition of the singers and musicians due to lack of patronage and support.

Takhleeq Development Foundation Director and famous Pashto language drama actor Arshad Hussain said the day was observed on March 3 annually in 60 countries across the globe.

He said the day was observed to highlight the importance of music and plight of people associated with this industry.

Arshad Hussain said the artistes faced numerous hardships and the industry suffered due to militancy and ignorance by successive governments.

Arshad Hussain said that several artistes had changed profession due to threats from militants while score of others were killed in Peshawar and other districts for a host of reasons.

“Singers and songwriters like Ayman Udas, GhazalaJaved and others were shot dead while ShahenshahBacha, Alamzeb Mujahid and others quit profession due to threats from militants,” he added.

He lamented that the artistes from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were also being ignored at the national level events and their services were not recognised. 

A winner of presidential Pride of Performance Award and music composer & director, Nazar Gul Ustad, pointed out that the Pakistan Television was paying a meagre amount of Rs250 to musicians for performing in a programme. 

“I performed in a PTV programme and they did not pay the money despite even after six months. How would I financially support my family if I am underpaid,” he questioned. 

Nazar Gul Ustad said that several artistes had fallen ill and were looking to the government’s help.

Cultural Journalists Forum head Ehtisham Toru said that artistes should forge unity in ranks to get due rights. 

He called for provision of monthly stipends to artistes from the tribal areas as they were not included in the monthly stipends programme.

The journalist demanded government ownership of the industry and a proper mechanism for the welfare of artistes and to revive the industry. 

Later, famous singer  Hashmat Sahar, emerging young singers Bilawal Saeed, female singers ShabnamTabassum, Farah Khan,  Rabab  players  Shahid Malang, Gulabkhel Afridi and others received huge applause from the audience for performance.

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