March 31, 2010 (Calcutta Tube): Sania Mirza may have chosen a Pakistani as her husband but that’s unlikely to melt the hearts of the hardliners who oppose cultural ties between the two nations. Pakistani artists, who have made a name (and money) from Indian reality shows haven’t been allowed to perform in Mumbai since the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack.
Zee TV’s Sa re ga ma pa Challenge series has always invited artists from across the border and globe. The new season of Sa re ga ma pa challenge is slated to come later this year but the show’s makers are said to be in two minds about including contestants from Pakistan.
A source closely associated with the show informs, “At the moment, the channel and the creatives are trying to work on a new concept. The real issue though is, should they invite the Pakistanis? The challenge series is called as vishwa yudh (world war). So, you need to have international contestants. Ideally, you can’t do without the Pakistani singers. The channel is also mulling over the idea to have a reputed Pakistani artist as a judge. However, all this is subject to the ground realities at that point of time.”
Putting all speculations to rest, a well placed source from the channel says, “If Wasim Akram can be Kolkata Knight Riders’ (bowling) coach and move freely in India, why should anyone object to budding Pakistani singers participating in Sa re ga ma pa.? We’re firm on getting the few talented singers from Pakistan who add value to the competition. The environment isn’t tense as it was before. If it remains calm, I see no reason why any one should object to their presence.”
-Mayur Lookhar/ Sampurn Wire