Artistes at Lahooti Melo stress on need to include music to curricula

An artiste performs at Lahooti Melo 2018. Photo: Geo News

HYDERABAD: The need to include courses on music and dance in the curricula for educational institutes in Sindh was stressed at the Lahooti Melo 2018.

The bureaucrats of Sindh do enjoy the songs of Abida Parveen but they do nothing when it comes to taking practical steps such as adding music to curricula of educational institutes, journalist Wusatullah Khan said during one of the sessions at the two-day festival.

While addressing Barrister Zamir Ghoomro, who was representing the Sindh government at the event, Wusatullah raised a question on the impediments in making performing arts a part of the curricula.

Wusatullah said music and dance were taught at educational institutes until 1970s, before the regime of General Zia-ul-Haq.

Also present at the two-day festival, television artist Khaled Anam said art in all forms is important for a country like Pakistan, which is being eaten up by terrorism. 

He added that people in the entertainment industry were willing to work on the promotion of arts and culture and that too without charging money.

Anam spoke about the possibility of having performing arts as a part of the curricula, saying it was feasible as universities abroad offered doctorate in subjects such as music too.

Jami Chandio, a writer and literary critic, who was also present at the event, said the work that had to be carried out in the field of performing arts did not occur as the society was more focused on division on the basis of language and religion.

However, he added, events like the Lahooti Melo are a wake-up call for such a society as it reminds them that there is more to the world than division among people.

Site of the two-day festival. 

Calling art a catalyst for change in such a society, founder and vocalist of Sketches band, Saif Samejo, said art plays its role when the society gets suffocated.

He said the society should open up to change and discussion on grave issues such as sexual violence. While speaking about the recent incident of rape and murder of Zainab in Kasur, Samejo said if people cannot explicitly talk about issues then they could at least create awareness in some way or the other among the youth so that they take the message forward.

The two-day festival that was held at a club close to Niaz Stadium where people from different walks of life participated.

Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences Vice Chancellor Dr Bikha Ram spoke about the importance of performing arts, saying there was a time when snakebite and epilepsy would be treated through music.

A poet and storyteller from the United States also attended the festival, where during one of the sessions he told the audience his family and friends were apprehensive of him visiting Pakistan. But, he added, the event changed his image of the country.

University of Sindh Vice Chancellor Dr Fateh Muhammad Burfat said Lahooti Melo was the beautiful face of Sindh, which was also a reflection of how the people of the province were.

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