Abrarul Haq: Tuning in to PTI

Published: December 13, 2011
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Is Abrarul Haq sitting on PTI’s hot seat?

Is Abrarul Haq sitting on PTI’s hot seat?

LAHORE: 

Whether you love the party or despise it, there is one positive thing Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has done in a very short while. It has woken up the Pakistani youth from their former days of complete political indifference. And where the youth goes, music and fashion are sure to follow. Nowadays everyone, from musicians and poets to models and fashion designers, wants to join the Imran Khan brigade.

Recently, there was much furore over Abrarul Haq, the king of bhangra music and the musical icon behind “Billo” joining PTI. Although the musician-turned-social worker hasn’t officially given an acceptance statement yet, The Express Tribune spoke with Haq to learn more about the artist’s alleged political affiliation mentioned on PTI’s Facebook page.

“It is the love PTI members have for me that instigated this announcement, but I haven’t joined the party yet,” said Haq. “I have consulted the members of the Youth Parliament of Pakistan (YPP), my close friends and family members — they have all given me the green signal to join PTI. However, when I officially join the party, I’ll hold a press conference informing everyone myself,” he added. When asked whether he will be a part of the PTI’s Karachi dharna on December 25, the music maestro laughingly said, “You never know!”

Haq hasn’t been the only musician who has been associated with PTI. On August 11, the Islamabad-based band Alag came out with a patriotic number called “Jaago Pakistan”, which was dedicated to PTI. Amongst other musicians, the band Soch, Alterego and pop singer Shahzaman Alam have also expressed their support. A plethora of Imran Khan’s own friends such as Ali Azmat, Strings and others who had worked with him during charity tours to raise funds for Shaukat Khanum Cancer Memorial Hospital have been consistent supporters of his public rallies.

One of Imran Khan’s childhood friends, Mian Yousuf Salahuddin, who is the grandson of Allama Iqbal, has composed three songs including the hugely popular Kalam-e-Iqbal “Utho Meri Duniya Ke Gareebo Ko Jaga Do” sung by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan. He handed two of his compositions over to Insaf Student Federation (ISF) for PTI’s Lahore jalsa. “PTI have brought out this passion and nationalism and the media is witnessing this movement,” says Salahuddin.

PTI’s youth wing and its office bearers have also promoted underground musicians by allowing them to perform at rallies. On the other hand, underground bands have chosen dharnas as a platform because they pull in a much larger audience than regular concerts.

“By and large, musicians and students relate to Imran Khan. They have witnessed Imran Khan’s philanthropic endeavours for years,” says Fauzia Kasuria, the Vice President of PTI’s Womens Wing. Kasuri adds that to make the dharnas more interactive and entertaining, PTI’s Peshawar dharna featured several unknown folk musicians, while in Lahore, several underground musicians also performed.

Maria B adds a fashionable touch to PTI

Fashion designer Maria Butt, popularly known as Maria B, has joined PTI and become a member of its womens wings. When asked the reasons that made her choose PTI, Maria B gave three reasons, “Firstly, I admire Imran Khan’s character because for the past 15 years he hasn’t succumbed to pressure or corruption. Secondly, I run my private fashion house, and never before have I seen poverty and helplessness levels rise to this extent amongst my workers. Thirdly, I haven’t seen the youth getting involved in politics. Today, the youth is becoming politically active and interested in voting and this trend can be attributed to PTI.”

With additional reporting by Rafay Mahmood and Saadia Qamar

Design: Jamal Khurshid

Published in The Express Tribune, December 14th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (49)

  • T.tariq
    Dec 13, 2011 - 8:30PM

    Ohh yes..we all are becoming PTI FANS..and its true that youth is becoming politically active…. I myself was an apolotic but now i wish to vote for PTI…GOO IMRRAANN KHAANN!!

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  • Khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 8:33PM

    Abrar, you must join PTI. The country needs you, the nation needs you, its time!

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  • ProudPakistani
    Dec 13, 2011 - 8:44PM

    Tehreek e Insaf all the way…
    Pakistan Zindabad!!

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  • Dec 13, 2011 - 8:46PM

    Rock on indeed! Recommend

  • Faheem
    Dec 13, 2011 - 9:00PM

    Youth is willing to participate in electoral process because through PTI they feel the ownership of the process and outcome whereas all other parties are failed to bring such a feeling. Pakistan is too good to loose and youth has realised that. That is another reason why youth is rallying around PTI.

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  • khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 9:15PM

    nice piece, really encapsulated some essential aspects of revolution pakistani youth is going through

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  • Dec 13, 2011 - 9:31PM

    ibrar ul haq welcome you on pti,its very positive point to pakistan and pti.imran khan go forward we are with you,accept my salam all the pti members.

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  • youth karachi
    Dec 13, 2011 - 9:53PM

    Welcome TO PTI Ibrar ul Haq….Chalo Chalo Mizar e Quaid Chalo 25 th dec

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  • Dec 13, 2011 - 9:56PM

    Had Abrar made name in singing he won’t have been doing such stunts. Recommend

  • Mariam Khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 10:45PM

    lol…i have heard lady gaga is also joining PTI soon:D

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  • khalid
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:11PM

    this is great news for PTI that ibrar ul haq joining the party. by the way the dacoits in sind government has denied pti to hold jalsa in dec 25th. this absurd act will give more popularity to pti just like pmln who give more popularity to pti by holding their jalsa on oct 28th.Recommend

  • Salman Zafar
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:22PM

    The future is PTI….. Insahallah..

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  • Sultan Mehmood
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:45PM

    The groups of musicians, actors, cricketers will run the country now. That’s already a damage to our culture.. ooPs!

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  • Shakir
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:55PM

    @Mariam Khan:
    some very stupid comment…..even if its sarcasm even then it does not suit here…lady gaga is nothing…she is totally stupid and you are comapring her with abrar….i think you should come out and tell you are PML-N supporter rather than trolling here…!!!

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  • CB Guy
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:55PM

    leaving everything apart, why do we have the bohemian symbol on the title? really strange.

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  • zia ur rehman
    Dec 13, 2011 - 11:58PM

    @Mariam Khan:
    lolz…don’t know about lady gaga, but the famous fashion designer, Maria B, has also joined PTI…Common……we should appreciate Imran Khan for politicizing these non-political people, instead of making fun of it….

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  • Sj
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:20AM

    we want gaga noi want Ibrar praaaHHHH :)

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  • toor khan
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:29AM

    imran the king khan!

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  • wiqar ahmad
    Dec 14, 2011 - 2:47AM

    @shakir..nice answer.

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  • najaf
    Dec 14, 2011 - 3:07AM

    i hope this crook, swindler ,con artist Abrar ul Haq will not join the PTI , all he wants to make money by rsing funds.Recommend

  • arshad lone
    Dec 14, 2011 - 4:34AM

    pti forever!

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  • moin
    Dec 14, 2011 - 6:22AM

    we welcome ibrarul-haq

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  • Ch Allah Daad
    Dec 14, 2011 - 8:24AM

    Why no famous cricketer has joind PTI so far. Many of them have lived and worked with Imran Khan. They know the reality.

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  • ARF
    Dec 14, 2011 - 9:11AM

    Shakir: seriously learn to appreciate humour.Recommend

  • babar
    Dec 14, 2011 - 10:35AM

    Mr Ch Daad would you please stop denouncing PTI all the time if you r blind enough to not accept the reallity and truth then not everybody like you so your efforts will go in vain cause we all support PTI and Imran Khan and always will no matter what its time for change and Imran Khan is a symbol of Change :-)

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  • RizwanTKhan
    Dec 14, 2011 - 11:36AM

    Abrar and all patriotic sane people should join PTI to save this countryRecommend

  • sam
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:16PM

    can anyone plz tell me what this picture on the top of this article denotes?? i have confusion about it.

    many thanks

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  • Mann' Chalaa
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:20PM

    BRRRRRR….Chak de phatte…. Thats the beauty of PTI, fresh and credible faces… Love you guys… Keep Rocking…

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  • zezu
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:21PM

    @Ch Allah Daad:
    Inzamam will join JUI, rest of herd busy with Veena scandal.

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  • saleem
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:24PM

    Veena Malik should be appointed PTI Brand Ambassador

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  • Atif
    Dec 14, 2011 - 12:54PM

    I am surprised why the PTI supporters in the above comments and in general do not accept other’s point of view or criticism. This is against the spirit of democracy.

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  • blithe
    Dec 14, 2011 - 2:07PM

    @Ch Allah Daad:
    Sita White?

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  • Mariam Khan
    Dec 14, 2011 - 3:06PM

    @Shakir:
    i just failed to understand why PTI supporters are so insecure when it comes to PTI cmon ppl give us a break….why u ppl are all dictators? lets democracy n sanity prevails…and please dont take everything as matter of life n death just for PTI…..breathe n let other breathe too….relax PTI supporters and get well soon:)

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  • sam
    Dec 14, 2011 - 3:20PM

    does anyone of you know about the “horned hand” in the picture above the article..???? it’s quite intriguing and disturbing to me??

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  • zeeshan
    Dec 14, 2011 - 5:28PM

    good addition to PTI…………………. INQILAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBB

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  • Ali
    Dec 14, 2011 - 5:46PM

    @Mariam Khan: Mariam Nwaz i heard Tahira Sayed is joining PMLN. You know about Tahira Sayed .

    Recommend

  • Tariq
    Dec 14, 2011 - 6:23PM

    PTI is emerging as a new political giant and it seems as if it is a train, going to leave for promised land !! Utopia!!Every body is in hurry to board on this utopian train. Are we realistic? Recommend

  • Dec 14, 2011 - 7:53PM

    Is this the PTI election symbol? Will go down well with the burger bachhas methinks…

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  • antanu
    Dec 14, 2011 - 8:44PM

    @Mariam Khan:
    why ridicule…? do the artists are not human and have responsibility towards their country?
    If you dont like PTI or any party for that matter…its fine but you should not ridicule any one who likes one or opposes one.

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  • antanu
    Dec 14, 2011 - 8:46PM

    @Sultan Mehmood:
    a country is not owned by selected few…players, actors etc. too have rights to politics.

    Recommend

  • Dec 14, 2011 - 10:57PM

    @Mariam Khan: who says democracy is not good ,,yes democracey is working PTI supporters does not want to disturb it ,,yes PTI is against crupt political system ,,thats all it should be change

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  • Sid
    Dec 15, 2011 - 12:15AM

    Come on Abrar why wait. “Naek Kaam Mae Daer Kasee”. Change is inevitable. The writing is on the wall.

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  • amazed
    Dec 15, 2011 - 5:35AM

    It is great that so many people are joining PTI and these are from all walks of life. I think he should endorse and announce the common people, professors, social workers and poor people who join him. People like Maria B pay a pittance to their employees and respect nno labor laws. Abrar has a trust but he has used his influence with Musharraf to get away with too many concessions. Imran needs to be careful who actually gets party tickets at the time of election because more and more PTI is looking like Musharraf’s party. It would be sad to see this happen when Imran was the only person to actually refuse prime ministership when Musharraf had offered it to him in the forst place. For this to be a revolution of the masses, he needs to highlight through the media and his conferences and dharnas and rallys, the common man and bring the maali’s, the rickshaw drivers, the household workers, the kammis, the jamadaars, the haaris to the stage to embrace them and show mutual respect and support. He needs to prove to be of, from and for the people, i.e., the common man beyond their short term needs

    Recommend

  • sam
    Dec 15, 2011 - 10:39AM

    @TightChuddi: do you have any idea about the horned hand in the picture above??? I have been an ardent supporter of the PTI but this image has made me rethink about my choice???? i wonder if you or anyone else can help me with that..and if not then i humbly request you to kindly google the image and look for yourselves..

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  • Sara
    Dec 15, 2011 - 11:52AM

    @ sam i have never seen this image in any of PTI’s official jalsas or pubilicities.. i think the author has used the sign himself as people now see this sign as a *cool/rock on” statement instead of what if actually stands for.. Author we will be really grateful if you can clarify if this is official PTI logo or you just used it as a cool/rock on statement (no offence intended, just a query)

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  • Yasir Mehmood
    Dec 15, 2011 - 6:22PM

    the guy is a musharraf supporter no doubt turning to pti was inevitable

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  • salman
    Dec 16, 2011 - 6:33PM

    no doubt its a party for change bt pti has been hijacked by people who hs been in power previously i have no idea how imran will bring a change with these people in power

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  • Gazlla
    Dec 18, 2011 - 10:32AM

    The closest person to imran khan is shehzaf roy

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  • Dec 20, 2011 - 1:08AM

    No doubt, its a great sign for PTI as well is for Pakistan future, I was really inspired by PTI when I read this article :)
    Article : http://www.inflatu.com/news/abrar-ul-haq-pakistani-pop-singer-joins-pakistan-tehreek-insaf-pti/1736.html

    Recommend

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