Music transcends border

Music maestro Shafqat Amanat Ali

After the cancellation of a series of acts by Pakistani artists, here, in the last two months, the Indian audience has yet again established their love for live music from across the border.

Pakistani musicians, Goher Mumtaz of the band Jal and Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan - who performed in the city last week, say they’ve never faced problems in performing in India and feel welcomed instead.

Jal’s last act in Mumbai was reportedly cancelled due to political reasons, but Mumtaz, 31, maintains that he loves to perform in India. “I don’t know about other Pakistani artists, but our band has always been treated well. Since our first album (Aadat-2004), we’ve performed many times and the reception from the Indian fans has been incredible,” he says.

Shafqat, 48, who performed at the grand finale of HT City Youth Nexus on Friday, agrees. “Visiting India has been smooth for us. People in the High Commissions of India and Pakistan are very helpful. But at the same time, they are stern with those who are short
of documents,” he says.

During the show, Shafqat dedicated his popular track, Yeh Honsla, to all those striving for peace between India and Pakistan. “The insane lot wants the two countries to continue fighting but we, the sane people, should keep working towards peace,” he says.

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