By Iqra Ather
Even after a decade of separation from India, there are times that we feel hatred towards our neighboring country. May it be due to the feeling of suppression, after effects of not being given proper rights and status after separation, the wrong claim of Kashmir or any other issue the grievance remains. We are patriots for our country ready to lay down our lives if this nation needs it. There is no doubt in the fact that we have unconditional love for Pakistan and everything that exists inside it. It may be our corrupt government, flawed system or any other negative point, no one but we can criticize our nation.
Aside from all these double standards there remains one more to be discussed. No matter how much we may criticize or complain about the Indians, there is something about their media that we cannot stop watching. Is it the drama, the thrill, their beautiful actors, their captivating storylines or the angelic voices of their singers? One thing is for sure, no matter what the “X-factor” about them is, it has the Pakistani public hooked.
In recent times we have seen a rising trend in the media in which Pakistani and Indian stars have started appearing in advertisements together, this was soon followed by music video appearances and now movies as well. Even though Pakistan’s media industry has only recently started to flourish and made a name for itself in the media industries of the world, we can see big opportunities for it. A number of Pakistani stars such as Moammar Rana, Meera, Veena Malik, Humayun Saeed, Mona Lizza, JavedShiekh, Ali Zafar, Atif Aslam, Humaima Malik, Imran Abbas, the very famous Fawad Afzal Khan and countless others have already made a name for themselves in Bollywood.
The movie industry has had a large amount of talent exchange, mostly migration from Pakistan to India where the actors of our nation have recently started to give Indians a run for their money and a warning to hold on to their hearts as they might just steal them. Ever since the success of “Khoobsoorat” starting Fawad Afzal Khan and Sonam Kapoor, the only thing the lead actress could talk about was how amazing her co-actor was. The Indian public has also accepted this fact into their hearts and homes. This was proved when they made Fawad Khan their choice and ultimately made him the first Pakistani actor to win a Filmfare award for best actor.
Moving towards the music industry, Ali Zafar made his debut into the industry in 2010 with the movie “Tere bin Laden” as an actor as well as a singer. The film earned him a nomination for Filmfare’s Best Male Debut Award. The rock star was recently confirmedas the winner of the ‘Most stylish import of the year’ award at HT Style Awards 2015. If we talk about vocal talents alone, we will see that Atif Aslam has been adored by the Indians and made his voice a stereotype for romantic and sad songs in their movies. His voice has been used in ideal and hit songs such as “JeenaJeena”, “Tere Bin”, “Tera Hone LagaHoon” and numerous others. And lets not forget about the legendary RahatFateh Ali Khan who needs no introduction, nor does his music need any explanation, his voice and name speaks for itself.
Even after events like the Mumbai attack we have gotten statements from people like Mahesh Bhatt who openly talk to the media about how wrong it is for the Indian government to stop talent exchange between the countries. In an interview in Karachi Mahesh Bhatt stated that he will support any combined cultural activity taking place between Pakistan and India.
We cannot deny that there has been a drastic limitation of Indian film releases and banning of drama channels to restrict Indian media as much as possible. On the other hand we can also see that Indian comedy and music shows openly invite Pakistanis to come and take a part in their shows.
Every story has two sides, just as every situation has different point of views. People from both ends seem to think differently. If at one point some Indians think that Pakistani’s are terrorists and should be banned from entering India, than there are also those who praise friendship amongst them. Just as there are people in Pakistan who despise Indian on the name of patriotism but some of us also wish for a more collaborative environment with them.