Friday, June 25, 2010

India, Pakistan singers chorus message of peace and love (With Queen's Baton story)

As Puranchand Wadali of the famous Wadali brothers singing duo began the jugalbandi "mast-kalandar" with Pakistani singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, it received thunderous applause from an enthusiastic gathering present here to welcome the Queens Baton Relay for the 19th Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

"Ei hind kya jaane dil ko, uski bhi majboori hai, ishq mein pagal sa hona, shayad zaroori hai, chalte-chalte jug beetein hain, dil ki nazuk rahon mein, waqt-e-waqt-suna that humne, bus do kadmon ki doori hai," Khan and Wadali brothers sang, preaching the message of peace and brotherhood.

The strains of sufi music were quick to melt in the surroundings and soothed an exhausted gathering battling the scorching sun. It was a fitting welcome to the baton which was coming to India after traversing 1,90,000 km in 340 days.

The message was of love, whether it was the opening rendition Allahu by Khan or the Tu Maane Ya Na Maane by Wadalis, the theme being friendship through sports.

We want the animosity between the two countries (India and Pakistan) to end and what better way to do that than through music. In the past, the singers from the two countries were barred from entering each otherss countries and we want this wall to be broken, said the older of the Wadali brothers, Pyarelal Wadali.

Khan agrees and says it is peace that people of the two countries wish for. The effort is to use this platform to promote love and peace. Now with Commonwealth Games, we are striving to forge friendships through sport and we pray that we succeed in our endevour.

True to his words, Khan regaled the crowd when he ended his rendition with a Punjabi couplet which said; Rab na seta vich rehnda, na mandir vich rehna, rabnu randi sau, rab preeta vich rehna da. (God is niether in Sita nor in temple, God resides where there is love.)

A standing ovation was soon to follow and the rendition even got the applause from the crowd across the border. A host of dignitaries which included Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, governor Shivraj Patil, Commonwealth Games Federation chief Michael Fennell, Indian Olympic Association (IOA) chief Suresh Kalmadi, Pakistan Olympic Association chief Syed Arif Hassan, stood up clapping to acknowledge their performance.

The colourful ceremony also included folk dancers and musicians and a BSF band.

"We really like the performance of the Wadali brothers and Rahet Fateh Ali Khan. It had a message and it touched the hearts of everyone present. We hope it brings peace and harmony between the two neighbours, said Deepak Singh, a BSF personnel who was among the lucky few to attend the function.

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