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Prateek Kuhad Singing at the Shaheen Bagh Protest was Solidarity, Not a Free Concert

By: Raka Mukherjee

News18.com

Last Updated: February 06, 2020, 08:34 IST

Image credits: Twitter.

Image credits: Twitter.

If you wanted to see a live music show, buy a ticket to a concert, like the rest of us. This was solidarity. This wasn't a free-for-all viewing with no purpose. The point of the performance was the protest.

Delhi's temperatures in February still remain in single digits in early morning or late evening, but the morale of the protesters at Delhi's Shaheen Bagh still remain high, despite the cold.

As their protest entered its 52nd day of protest, their hearts were anything but a cold/mess as singer-songwriter Prateek Kuhad took the stage and sang his popular song, 'Dil Beparvah' for them.

Kuhad was performing as a collective of artists who were showing solidarity at Shaheen Bagh in a 'call for artists.' The collective also involved other artists like Kusha Kapila, Lifafa, Ankur Tewari, Peter Cat Recording Co, Anushka Manchanda and other prominent artists.

"With the run-up to the Delhi elections and constant threats (and incidents) of violence, the next few days will be critical for the #ShaheenBaghProtest. Let's thwart every force that tries to bring us down through art, theatre, and music, with this line up of some of our favourite artistes. February 2nd-7th at Shaheen Bagh. We hope to see you with us," read a poster, showing the artist collective.

As part of this collective, Prateek Kuhad performed at the protest.

There were several people who lauded the move, for a rising prominent artist to show up, meant more mainstream exposure for the protest.

But let's not confuse this with a free concert. Prateek Kuhad's prominent face was to call the masses to come - but it was for support, not to listen to his music live, for free.

No, really. If you wanted to see live music show, buy a ticket to a concert, like the rest of us. This was solidarity. This wasn't a free-for-all viewing with no purpose. The point of the performance was the protest. Let's not overlook that in guise of getting to see a high-profile artist perform.

Prateek Kuhad had earlier in an interview with The Hindu said that he had earlier been to one of the protests in Delhi at Shaheen Bagh. He added that "I think the spirit of the protest itself is lovely. It is heart-warming actually because it is just people getting together and helping each other out. Obviously, the true intent behind the protests, which is basically inclusiveness, is something I support strongly."

At his Delhi concert on 22nd December, a placard supporting anti-CAA protesters was also spotted.