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PESHAWAR: The producers of Pashto films are always trying out current subjects and funny titles to do business but a latest film song having comparison of love to Panama Leaks scandal is rather interesting and worth listening to.

“Pa Mohabbat Ke Corruption De Karhay. Da Bal Yo Khkuli Selection De Karhay. Khlasai De Nishta Os Pa Dasey Ywa Ghoima Kay Ger Shway. Pa Panama Ke Ger Shway,” sings a Pakhtun blond and a less known female playback singer.

The male singer responds: “Khpal Mohabbat Ba Gatam. Pa Adalat Ba Ye Gatam. Dhandli May Na Da Karhay. Ma Kho Sta Yari Karhay Da.”

This Pashto film duet song is going viral on social media these days. The song is apparently about lovers’ quarrel as one of them has betrayed the other in love. Interesting thing about the song is using analogy of Panama Leaks scandal drawing interest of those familiar with the case and waiting for its verdict.

The female singer is alleging her lover of corruption as he has selected another beautiful face over her, creating a mess and now she is warning him to face the trial. Perhaps she is here the voice of PTI, which had been after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to present himself for ‘Talashi’ or accountability.

Film’s song going viral on social media

“You are caught in Panama scandal now,” sings the female singer but the male singer comes even stronger by singing that he would win his love (case) by proving it in the court because he has not rigged anything but only tried to be her friend.

If the object of affection for the male singer in the song is construed to mean money or riches then the song makes perfect sense in the current context too. However, such topics are taken by the Pashto film producers to attract more people to come to cinema halls.

The song is from Pashto film ‘Saudagar’ produced by Shahid Usman, casting known actors Shahid Khan and Jehangir Khan. The song is going viral as those, who even don’t watch Pashto films, have been chuckling at it once they hear it due to its obvious and rather amusing comparison between a lovers’ quarrel and a national political issue.

“Pashto film directors are always trying to be innovative. This is an effort to attract audiences to the cinema to watch the movie,” says a film critic Ihtisham Turo.

The film was screened last month in Aina Cinema Peshawar, Swat Cinema Swat and Nashaiman Cinema Karachi, however, it did not do much business despite this song.

This film was a flop and the Pashto cinema has yet to produce quality films but listening to songs of Pashto films often is a good indicator of what is happening around.

Sometime back when terrorism was at its peak and even children used to experiment suicide bombings by blowing up frogs with crackers, the terror-affected psyche was also visible from the songs like ‘Khudkasha Dhamaka Yama” wherein a female singer compares her charms to that of a suicide bomber, who blows everything that is around.

The new Panama love song, however, is much of a relief as it is focusing some of the universal subjects like corruption, betrayal, accountability and protests. In the song, the female singer protests betrayal of her lover by saying that he should stop making political statements as she would not have gone on ‘Dharna’ if the lover did not make false promises.

The Pashto film despite this topical and symbolic song was a flop but one wonders what would be the sequel of this song after the judgment of the Panama Leaks scandal is announced.

Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2017