Lahore: Lahore: Last week, folk legend was Shoukat Ali was admitted at Services Hospital Lahore on account of a severe liver infection. As per the latest reports, he is in critical condition and the hospital administration is trying its best to ensure a speedy recovery.
While he is doing better than the condition in which he was brought in, he is not completely out of danger. MS Services Hospital Dr Shahzad Cheema is personally overseeing the singer’s treatment but it is the government officials that have really left the singer disappointed.
He spoke to The Express Tribune after Punjab Minister of Information and Culture Mian Muhammad Aslam and Chief Minister Fayazul Hasan Chouhan paid him a visit in the hospital. “They brought me flowers and asked about my wellbeing, I don’t need that. I need financial help,” Shoukat told The Express Tribune.
“It is disgraceful and petty of the government to sideline an artist after he has passed his prime. I don’t have enough savings to support such a prolonged treatment and all the government officials are doing is pay me customary visits. I think my services to the country merit a little more than that,” said Shoukat.
Shoukat is being accompanied by his son Imran Shoukat Ali at the hospital. Imran also said that no source of funding has worked out in his father’s favour and the family is pinning all their hopes on government aid.
“My father dedicated his whole life to the country and this is what he gets in return,” Imran told The Express Tribune. “How can you even ignore the inspiring role his songs played during the 1965 and 1971 war? The message from the government is clear; you only matter to them when you are relevant.”
Shoukat is one of the biggest stars to come out of the Pakistani music industry, with about five decades of singing and a Pride of Performance award under his belt. He is perhaps most renowned for the national songs he rendered during the 1965 and 1971 wars with India, such as Saathion Mujahidon Jaag Utha Hai Sara Watan, Mera Puttar Pakistan Da and Apna Quaid Aik Hai amongst many others.
Besides this, Shoukat released many albums and lent his voice to many film songs, as well as performing at the Asian Games held in New Delhi in 1982. He hasn’t been in good health for the last few years but still performs at various musical programmes occasionally, while his songs Imran and Mohsin try to follow in his footsteps as well.
Have something to add to the story? Share in the comments below.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ