Punjabi singer Gurdas Maan feels Punjabi language and culture are being ignored in the quest for globalisation and internationalisation.
“Our excessive fascination towards English and other international languages is taking us away from our roots. We must stay connected to our roots. These roots define our identity but we are least bothered about our lingual and cultural heritage. Such tendencies have come to define the modern society,” said Maan, who interacted with HT on his visit at Kila Raipur sports festival on Saturday, where he also gave a live performance for the first time.
Sharing an anecdote from his childhood, Maan said before his performance that this might be his maiden performance at the famous festival but he could never forget the day when he was a student and attended the festival with two friends.
“I still remember that day when my friends and I hitched a ride on someone’s truck to reach Kila Raipur village. As we reached the venue of the fest, our excitement had reached its zenith and it was an amazing experience to enjoy various events. And, now, coming here for a performance is making me feel special,” he said on the stage.
He continued to stress on the importance of remaining connected to one’s roots and suggested that our society must draw inspiration from European nations like Germany, France and Italy where people still share a warm bond with their culture and mother tongue.
“Questioning why Punjabi films and music industry have given a back seat to Punjabi culture would not help until and unless all of us decide to take our culture seriously,” he highlighted on a serious note.
“It is good and vital to learn English and other languages but it does not mean that we forget our own mother tongue in this process. It should not be forgotten that it is through our mother tongue that we get a platform to learn other languages,” he pointed out.
On being asked about his other interests besides singing and writing songs, he said he loved reading literature, striking conversations with like-minded people on different subjects, playing with little children and devoting time for fitness, without which life might turn lethargic and unhealthy.
For his fame and adulation from fans, rather than giving credit to his hard work, he said he was highly thankful for the blessings of God and his parents and family.
Striking an emotional chord, he said he wished to perform every year at this festival and that too free of charge so that the organisers were not burdened in inviting him.
Meanwhile, pictures of Maan’s live performance and selfies with fans went viral on social networking websites within minutes. Locals said his arrival at the festival would prove to be a historic moment for the village and the festival.