ULFA threatens Assam singer for performing Hindi song in Bihu

Guwahati, April 18 (IANS) The ULFA’s anti-talk faction led by Paresh Baruah Thursday threatened popular Assamese singer Zubeen Garg with dire consequences for defying its diktat that asked all the singers and artistes not to sing or perform Hindi songs on stage during the Bihu festival.

“He is a very talented singer and we want that he takes Assam’s art and culture to the world stage. But if he chooses to act as an agent of Hindi aggression in Assam, the conflict that we have with him now will take the shape of a clash.

“The ULFA shouldn’t be held responsible for any eventuality as a result of the clash,” the outfit said in an email statement sent to media today.

Garg, who had shot to fame with his rendition of “Ya Ali” in film “Gangster”, performed the same song on stage here during a Bihu cultural function recently. The song topped charts across India, the Middle East and South Asia.

During the function, he also said that Hindi is the “national language” of India and that he loves it.

“He had to confront with the ULFA in early 1990s for a similar offence. Then, he had promised that he would not insult Assamese art and culture in future. But, he seemed to have forgotten that now,” ULFA publicity secretary Arunodoi Asom said in the statement.

The ULFA said Hindi is India’s official language and not national language as asserted by the singer.

Garg was, however, very quick to react on the threat issued to him. He asserted that he would keep singing songs of love and brotherhood. He said he had sung the Bollywood number on stage on that day at the request of the audience.

“No force can diminish the liberty of an artiste. If such things continue, I won’t perform on stage during Bihu from next year. And if need be, I will leave Assam,” he said on his Facebook account.

On April 10, the ULFA had urged the singers to stay away from singing Hindi songs and the dancers to refrain from dancing to such songs on stage during Bihu programmes.

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