Shoaib Akhtar has come under fire for mocking and ridiculing the anthem of the sixth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL). The former cricketer had trashed Groove Mera, calling it the worst anthem ever. He also said that he uses the song to put his children to sleep as they are scared of it.
Following Akhtar’s comments, several celebrities including Adnan Siddiqui, Hassan Sheheryar Yasin (HSY), Hira Mani, Ahmed Ali Butt and Wasim Akram stepped forward to defend the song. Though they did not name Akhtar directly, they subtly shaded him for his comments.
“Least we can do for our artists is respect them,” said Adnan. “It’s very easy to be keyboard warriors and shred someone’s hard work to pieces.”
“Naseebo Lal doesn’t deserve to be trolled like this,” added the actor.
Sharing his thoughts on the brouhaha, Wasim Akram said: “Hope all this well. Aap log theek hain, exercise kar rahay hain or mou chukk kay criticise kar rahy ho har cheez nu. That’s you guys.”
“Abhi mene PSL anthem pay bohat saray views sunay or theek hai, har aik ki marzi hoti hai magar ennay Tan Sen therday ni tussi, har gal tey bolna hai. Tareef na karna tussi,” he added in Punjabi.
Sharing Wasim’s video on Twitter, Omair Rana said: “I love this man! Wasim Akram. Jewndy raho!”
HSY also praised Groove Mera, saying that he is listening to it on repeat.
“When will we learn to take things in perspective and react accordingly,” questioned Faysal Quraishi.
“Let’s go with the spirit of sports and celebrate little things. I personally think Naseebo Lal who is very popular with masses will rock the stadium with her ‘groove’ and high notes,” remarked the actor.
Similarly, in a detailed note posted on Instagram, Ahmed Ali Butt said: “For people who don’t know… Naseebo Lal is a Pakistani folk singer with over 30 years of singing experience. She never got the limelight that she deserved because most of her songs were during the “raunchy” Punjabi film era. But that does not change the fact that she is a Pakistani folk legend with hundreds of songs to her credit.”
“Groove Mera is a great song and a bold step by PCB. For all the people making fun of her pronunciation are the same people who love UK or Canadian Punjabi singers,” he said further. “So shut up and be proud of your nation’s talent. God knows you didn’t contribute to their success or hard work, so the least you can do is be respectful towards them.”
“Ab volume kholo or bolo…aaj vaykhay ga crowd mera groove TV tay,” he concluded.
Hira Mani, in a lengthy note posted to social media said: “We respect you madam. Bas yeh so-called elite burgers music critics internet kay dour kay hum jese chunnay munnay followers walay. Inko kia pata kay asal fan following houti kiya hai.”
Meanwhile, other celebrities, including Farhan Saeed, Anoushey Ashraf and Haroon Shahid directly responded to Akhtar for his comments.
“It’s his opinion, that’s ok! He has the right, but that’s a stupid opinion is what is my opinion,” stated Farhan Saeed.
“This song will be a winner in the stadiums, mark it,” he added.
Haroon Shahid also directly responded to Akhtar saying: “So when Shoaib Akhtar was being paid millions by Kolkata Knight Riders and this song came up I bet he would have danced on this track at the Eden Gardens just to impress Shahrukh jee.”
In a later tweet, the singer-turned-actor said: “This guy talks about aesthetics! Here’s a guy who commentates in English defining ‘Groove’ for us in musical terms.”
Sharing her thoughts on the controversy, Anoushey Ashraf said: “Oh dear, this is in bad taste. One thing to not like a song, another thing to run down artists, musicians this way. Big fan of Shoaib Akhtar but not the way he’s bashing the anthem.”
Television actor, Naveed Raza also participated in the debate, commenting: “Learn to appreciate Shoaib Akhtar bhai. The worst virus is a human, dehumanising another human. Groove Mera is a solid stadium-feel song.”
Groove Mera is currently trending at number one on YouTube Pakistan with more than five million views till the filing of this report.
What did you think of Groove Mera? Let us know in the comments below.