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Guns and glory from Punjab’s Gangland

Punjabi songs that threaten, intimidate and glorify you to pick up a gun may soon be a trend of the past with Punjab Police urging singers to watch the lyrics.

punjab Updated: Feb 13, 2018 13:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Gangland,Punjab,Punjabi song
Mankirt Aulakh’s Gangland has over 80 millions views. (YouTube grab )

Guns, glory, ‘gabru (youth)’: These three words succinctly summarise every popular Punjabi song that is ruling the charts nowadays. With Punjab Police asking pop singers not to glamourise liquor, guns and gangsterism in their songs as part of their social responsibility, HT takes a look at a few such popular numbers:

1. Gangland: As if the name isn’t enough, the opening shot of the song shows a ‘gabru’ casually sitting in his living room with a rifle. Sung by Mankirt Aulakh, and also featuring Deep Kahlon, the song uses gunshots as a musical note. “Pind saara gangland baneya, tu aakhdi jatta sheher gehra maar ja (The entire village has turned into gangland, and you are asking jatt to come visit the city!”) The song has over 80 millions views.

2. Daang: Jagah teri, time tera; daang meri, vehm tera (Place of your choice, time of your choice as well; weapon (staff) will be mine and I will fix all your idiosyncrasies). Yes, that’s the hook of the song that has over 35 million views. Fight club-style fights, guns, and overwhelming threats masquerading as lyrics, the song seems to embody everything wrong with the current Punjabi music scene.

3. G Wagon: Picture this: Guys chilling out with expensive cars, a girl enters, the guys look at the girl but this one guy (the singer) whips out his pistol and casually shoots at the guy looking at his girl. Cut to the hook, a bunch of people are dancing with rifles in hand, surrounded by mean machines. “Jithe banda maar ke kasoor puchde, jatt us pind nu belong karda (The village where a man is killed and then his fault is discussed, that’s the place I belong to),” goes the song, sung by Sidhu Moosewala and featuring Gurlez Akhtar and Deep Jandu. It has 17 million views.

4. Kabza: Widely considered to be the song that began the trend of glorification of guns and violence in Punjabi music, the song begins with Babbu Mann slowly singing, “Khelange jatt ajj khoon diyan holiyan (Jats with play Holi with blood today),” and men walking to their enemies with rifles in hand. Soon enough, the tempo changes to something more upbeat as he repeats himself, adding “Karde oh waaje ajj maar maar goliyan (Fill the air with the noise of bullets).” “Chakk lo revolver (Pick up the revolver),” the song goes. Shared in 2012, the song has 8 million views. It was a staple at Punjabi weddings until recently when new numbers such as Gangland took over.

5. Jail: Viewed 26 million times, the song by Mankirt Aulakh talks of convicts calling up people and threatening them like it’s no big deal. “Jailan vichon phone aunge, parkhi naa pahunch jatt di (You will get calls from jails, don’t try to question the extent of the jat’s reach). It then shows a gangster, sitting on a table and chair, drinking juice and calling people from a landline phone!

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First Published: Feb 13, 2018 12:58 IST