MUZAFFARABAD: A new national anthem was launched in Muzaffarabad on Monday, which was inspired by the situation in Indian occupied Kashmir.
“Kashmir jo Pakistan bhi hai, yeh Jannat arzi, ye wadi; Hai iska naseeb ab azadi”, is the chorus of the song, which means: Kashmir which is also Pakistan, this paradise on earth, the valley. Now its destiny is freedom.
The producer of the song is Omar Ahsan, who is a Lahore born artist and is the son-in-law of comedian and actor Moeen Akhtar.
“The unending atrocities by the Indian troops and the remarkable resilience of the Kashmiri people inspired me to write a national anthem with the theme of Kashmir,” the 40-year-old artist told Dawn during the launch of the song by IQ Genius Media.
Having obtained a masters in business administration and a doctorate in psychology, Mr Ahsan has produced more than seven songs for Zarb-i-Azab, the campaign launched against terrorism by the Pakistan Army.
“I would get so angry after I would see pictures of people with bullets and pellets in Indian held Kashmir and I looked for songs on the struggles of the Kashmiris. I was disappointed to know that there were no such songs,” he said, Mr Ahsan said he made up his mind to produce such a sing on Sept 8, after which he invited various poets and writers for the project.
Of the four submissions he received, Omar Ahsan selected the song penned by Sabir Zafar on Sept 25 and the song was compiled by Karachi based musician and singer Waqar Ali.
Mr Zafar has penned a number of national songs including “hai jazba junoon to himmat na haar”.
Though a lot of artists were reluctant to sing in favour of the Kashmiri freedom struggle, in case it cost them projects in India, Ali Azmat, Umair Jaswal and Alicia Dice decided to sing the song, which Omar Ahsan begins with a voice over narration.
He said Umair Jaswal lost at least 18,000 fans from across the border on his Facebook page after he posted about singing the song.
The audio recording of the song was completed by Oct 22 and making the video took another two weeks, so the project was complete by Nov 5.
The song was initially to be launched in Karachi on Nov 12 but the venue was changed to Muzaffarabad, as it is close to the areas where Indian oppression is at its worst.
“Through this song, we want to express solidarity with and highlight the misery of Kashmir’s people across the world. The release of the song is the first phase of this campaign and we will do everything possible to help get Kashmiris their rights. Portions of the song will be in Hindi as well so that Indians can know about the brutalities committed by their government”, Mr Ahsan said.