From Band to Disband


Of Talent, Aspirations, Fundamentalism, and Discouragement

Great are the people who realise their own talent, and encourage others to follow their’s. Talent is a gift of God that, He bestows every individual with. It takes patience, motivation, hard work and inspiration to discover this blessing, which if nurtured with genuine efforts can definitely make the way ahead, brighter and successful. While creating a sense of curiosity and dedication within oneself, it also forms a base to persue the career that better suits one’s talent. The fact that choosing one’s profession according to his or her wish has been admitted by all and is being considered the only way that can derive an individual’s creativity to the maximum and thus, enable him or her to reach the zenith of his or her career. Talent is a virtue that brings about a revolution in one’s life, provided that it is being associated with the profession undertaken. One such effort to nurture the talent was made by the only eve band of Kashmir, which although was unable to turn this dream into reality, was still able to make a strong remark in the minds of people. 

“Pragaash”, (the advent of light), a rock band, was such a creation of three innocuous girls, which they had choosed to give vent to their talent. With the hope of a progressive future and having no idea of what worse was going to happen, they performed in the local competition wherein they were adjudged to be the best band. Having got such a good response in their debut performance was a matter of rejoice but, this joy wasn’t meant to last longer, because the talent that had won accolades for them, was in some way against the moral fabric of the society, as termed by its conservative section. Ironically, it came under scanner for its uniqueness. Working in the direction of their talent soon came to a halt, when they were abused, harassed and threatened with dire consequences, by few people, owing to their response to keep moving on, come what may. Although they had choosed a platform that has to its credit, the capability to contribute immensely in promoting the rich culture of the valley, but the spate of events that followed, surprised all. The issue generated a debate both in social and political circles of the state, particularly in the Valley. There hardly seemed anyone who was ignorant to this controversy, with every one’s opinion different from that of the other. Ranging from the harsh “fatwa’ issued by the grand Mufti to the threats that were posted online, all seemed to have disastrous effects on the morale of the band members, which ultimately succumbed to such fundamentalist forces and decided to quit. Although the issue could had been solved amicably, but the fact that the comments kept on pouring from every corner gave a serious edge to this matter. While bringing forth the controversies that erupted between those who favoured the band and those who were against it, it brought into light the ongoing war between the social evolution and regression. Even though, the main stream political parties seemed to offer all their support to the band, but on the other side both the factions of the Hurriyat and religious clerics seemed to oppose their choice for music and thus, left no stone unturned in making the band to abandon their choice for music. Referring their act as immoral with no place for it in the society, they asserted the need to revert from this path while forgetting the right to freedom and right to expression that have been given to all.

Tail piece: – Some reasonable questions that need to be answered are: What about individual liberties and choices, do we need to follow what others like for us while putting an end to our desires? Was their mistake so big that issuing “Fatwa”, a religious decree, against them, was the only tool left that could have made them to give up their choice of following music and singing? Why wasn’t a sense of decency shown by those who abused and threatened them with dire consequences, who although being educated resorted to such immoral activities? If, as per the conservative section of our society, the band was responsible for demolishing the moral fabric, what good had the commentators done by using rude and ignoble language? Are they not equally responsible in destroying the decorum of the society?  Why has not been any decree issued against those who have abused and disrespected these young girls in public over the internet? If the act was to be discouraged, it could have been done in a systematic manner which would not have hurt their feelings while at the same time ensured that the equilibrium of the society remained balanced. It is a time for all of us to introspect and mend our attitudes to suit our personality, which otherwise would lead us nowhere.    

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