Friday, 20 September 2013

Zubin concert sends positive waves

MUSIC is a universal language of peace and harmony as music maestro Zubin Mehta, who performed at Srinagar on Saturday, proved resoundingly. Unfortunately, prior to the concert many discordant notes were struck as separatists not only opposed the event by calling a strike but also organised a parallel function. While the successful culmination of the musical feast may have put an end to a needless controversy, the question that still begs an answer is: How would have the cause of the Kashmiri people been served by disallowing the musical extravaganza? Rather the state, where tourism is the mainstay of the economy, is likely to reap rich dividends if right signals are sent out to the international community. It is possible that organising “Ehsaas-e-Kashmir” may have had political undertones, an attempt to send out a message that all is well with Kashmir. Those who opposed the concert on the ground that it was elitist and meant for the exclusive preserve of 1,500 VVIPs are well within their right to voice their dissent. However, they must realise that such programmes can become mass events only if a conducive atmosphere is created and not under the shadow of fear and threat of disruption.
This is not the first time that misguided elements have tried to scuttle cultural events in the Valley. Two years ago their protests dealt a blow to the holding of Harud, a literary festival. Not too long ago they had come out against Pragaash, an all-girl rock band of Kashmir. Undeniably, the culture of intolerance is not confined to the Valley, it is an affliction that affects other parts of the country as well. But in the backdrop of turmoil that the state has suffered for too long, any attempt to put it back on the path of normalcy towards which it is inching slowly but steadily, should be welcome. The Valley, home to “Sufiyana mousiqi” that reinforces oneness of humanity, must reverberate with sounds of all kinds of music for no force transcends the mundane better than the seven notes of music.

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