A day after the anti-talk faction of ULFA headed by Paresh Barua threatened noted singer and musician Zubeen Garg for singing Hindi songs during Bihu festivals,a host of musicians and artistes of the state have backed the singer and condemned the outfit for its diktat.
Chief minister Tarun Gogoi not only congratulated the singer for taking a stand against the militants but also said the ULFA was on the wane. Bhupen Hazarika too sang Hindi songs at Bihu functions. But did that harm Assamese culture? Gogoi asked.
Meanwhile,Paresh Barua demanded an apology from Garg on Friday. In separate telephonic interviews to at least two television news channels of Guwahati Barua said,Zubeen Garg is not above the ULFA. Zubeen is an individual person who sings for money.
Zubeen however said he had done nothing wrong and his Hindi songs had not distorted or adversely affected Assamese culture and music as alleged by the ULFA. I have done nothing wrong. Why should I apologise? the singer asked.
Leading the campaign against ULFA,noted filmmaker Jahnu Barua asked the outifit to learn to respect culture. Culture and music have no language barriers. It is by way of cultural exchange that human civilization has emerged. One should also learn to pick up good things from others culture, Barua,who has made several Hindi films including Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara,said from Mumbai.
Bollywood actor Adil Hussain also extended support to Zubeen Garg and said it was wrong to dictate terms to artistes and creative people. Creative people are creative because they work with freedom, Hussain,who is currently in his home state for Bihu,said.