In a perfect world, art and music would be above politics and the historic divide between the two countries. But, the reality is far different from the utopian concept of “art without borders”. Atif Aslam is a name that is popular not just within Pakistan, but has delivered many hits across the border too. It’s a shame to see how Atif Aslam is having to deal with unprovoked, unwarranted hate from across the border in the form of #TakeDownAtifAslamSong.
After backlash and threats, Atif Aslam’s song, Kinna Sona, has been removed from T-Series’ YouTube channel. But why? #TakeDownAtifAslamSong started trending on Twitter after the music label put up the popular Pakistani singer’s version of Kinna Sona, despite Federation of Western India Cine Employees’ (FWICE) demand of banning Pakistani artistes in India.
The issue also caught the attention of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena. MNS Cinema Wing president Ameya Khopkar who tweeted to our dismay “WARNING TO T-SERIES. Takedown Pakistani singer Atif-Aslam song from your T-Series youtube channel immediately else we will take major action against T-Series.”:
WARNING TO TSERIES
Take down Pakistani singer Atif-Aslam song from your TSeries youtube channel immediately else we will take a major action against @TSeries. #TakeDownAtifAslamSong @itsbhushankumar @mnsadhikrut @rajupatilmanase
— Ameya Khopkar (@MNSAmeyaKhopkar) June 23, 2020
This is definitely not the first time such a distasteful action has been taken, and it definitely will not be the last. According to The Indian Express, the record label then shared an apology. The statement read, “It has been brought to our notice that the said song has been sung by Atif Aslam and this song was put up on the YouTube channel of T-Series by one of our employees from the promotion team. He was unaware of his action and erred while putting up the song.”
The statement further read, “We condemn our mistake and apologise for the same. We assure you that henceforth we will neither release, nor promote the song on any platform of T-Series. Meanwhile, we are removing the said song from our YouTube channel.”
“We also assure you that henceforth we will not be releasing or promoting work by any Pakistani artistes,” the letter from the record label concluded. Acts and statements like this are very unbecoming to music powerhouses of the “largest democracy of the world”.
We only hope to see our brothers across the border appreciate art and musical creations as above politics.