Some famous personalities of the Punjabi music and film industry, who have been humming tunes in favour of political party Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) through commercial advertisements on television have been getting mixed bag of reactions, especially from the youth and on social networking platforms.
Singers Jazzy B, Diljit Dosanjh, Gippy Grewal and Harbhajan Mann, have been promoting SAD in Lok Sabha elections.
It has already been a few weeks now since, youth have been reacting on the respective Facebook pages of these singers. While most individuals have criticised them for directly supporting SAD, some hold the view that if these singers and actors would have declined the offer to endorse for Badal’s party, they could have suffered unnecessary pressures and restrictions on releasing their music albums and films.
Ishmit Oberoi, a journalism student at Punjab Agricultural University, said, “We all know that being highly powerful and influential, political leaders can pressure anyone. I personally feel that if artistes do not favour them or decline their requests, they can be feared of restrictions on their work.”
While her classmate, Shafali Sharma said, “I agree that they may be under some political pressure, but they must remain audacious and should feel free to decline those advertisements that they do not feel comfortable to do.”
Hindustan Times also spoke to noted singer and actor Sarabjeet Cheema, who holds the view that being an artiste one should not accept any such offers that come from political parties as this simply puts a question mark on the artiste’s reputation among his or her fans.
“If they hold high spirits for politics, instead of supporting a specific political party they should actually inspire the public to come out and vote. They can even run campaigns to boost the voting spirits of public for the Lok Sabha elections,” Cheema said.
City-based writer and a retired professor NS Tasneem says, “The film stars or singers who make good amount of money should support noble causes, not political parties. Even if they get lucrative offers from any political party or leader, they should learn the tact to decline it smartly.
If they want to keep the public captivated towards their work, they must concentrate on their work.”
Although, these stars, who have also been criticised by their fans, have recently responded by apologising on their Facebook pages.
They have stated in their respective notes that they feel sorry for supporting a specific party and have elaborated their justification by mentioning that they do not have any direct or indirect connection with any political party, but would urge every single person who is eligible to use their right to vote.
Harbhajan Mann’s note said, “I would like to share that in December 2013 I had also resigned from the position of chairman of SAS Nagar district planning committee and ever since, I hold no connection with any political party or any government body. My only connection is with Punjab and its people.”