Ahmed Ali Fayyaz
JAMMU: Glaring absence of the Special Director General of Police V.K. Singh at an award function organised by him on occasion of the International Women’s Day here on last Thursday has taken the lid off a mess in Jammu and Kashmir Police. Even as Chairperson of Police Wives Welfare Association (PWWA) is said to have taken objection to certain “indecent Bollywood item numbers” and got as many as nine items replaced overnight, Special DGP (Headquarters) has raised questions how a “lateral entrant” was competent to replace the song and dance sequences duly cleared and approved by Raj Bhawan.
Chairperson PWWA and wife of Director General of Police, Dr Shesh Paul Vaid, could not be reached for her comments. However, her associates in PWWA maintained that some item songs chosen for the function were “indecent, livid and lecherous” and therefore replaced at the eleventh hour. “We were terribly embarrassed when the invitees at the rehearsal took objection to certain indecent and suggestive filmi items. We worked hard for the whole night and replaced all these items with serious entertainment items”, said a senior Police officer’s wife on condition of anonymity.
One of the Police officer’s wife pointed out that the function had been organised to honour some highly acclaimed women achievers within J&K Police as also to honour wife of Deputy SP Mohammad Ayoub Pandith, who was lynched to death by a frenzied mob in Srinagar on June 23, 2017, and wife of Inspector Feroz Ahmad Dar, who was among the six men of J&K Police ambushed and shot dead by terrorists of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba near Achhabal, Anantnag, on June 16, 2017.
“How come you play choli ke peechhe kya hai (Khalnayak:1993) and Kajra re (Bunty aur Babli: 2005) at such a serious and sombre function which was to honour wives of the Police officers who have attained martyrdom in just last June?”, asked the PWWA functionary.
While as the rehearsal for the programme was conducted at Police Auditorium here on March 7, real function was attended by a thick audience that included senior IPS, IAS, KPS, KAS and other officers besides invitees from politics, academia and civil society at General Zorawar Singh Auditorium of the University of Jammu on March 8. Governor’s wife Usha Vohra attended as Chief Guest and she did the honour of presenting the awards.
The awardees included Shaheen Ayoub Pandith, wife of the slain Dy SP Mohammad Ayoub Pandith, Mubeena Akhtar, wife of the slain SHO of Achhabal Inspector Feroz Ahmad Dar, Dyuti Rani Doley, IPS officer of 1986 batch of J&K cadre and Director of Sardar Vallabhbhai National Police Academy Hyderabad and Bharti Vaid, Chairperson PWWA and an officer of the rank of ADG in Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
Financial Advisor and Chief Accounts Officer at Police Headquarters Naila Zahoor, Superintendents of Police Sargun Shukla, Anita Sharma and Mamta Sharma, Dy SPs Ranu Kundal and Rajini Sharma, Inspector Shakti Devi who is on central deputation and has received international awards for her peacekeeping work in Afghanistan and East Timor and Inspector Gulshan Akhtar who is currently SHO of Women’s Police Station in Srinagar and Sub Inspectors Renu Ratta and Aarti Thakur were also honoured at the same function.
Special DG (Headquarters) V.K. Singh maintained that “not a single item” in the programme was in any manner objectionable or indecent. He claimed that the Khalnayak song ‘choli ke peechhe kya hai’ was neither proposed not included.
“As many as nine decent items were removed and replaced even after all these had been duly cleared and approved by Raj Bhawan. When I felt that the official initiative of J&K Police was hijacked by a lateral entrant, which has no competence or authority to interfere with it, I distanced myself from it”, V.K. Singh said. He, however, attributed his absence of three days (March 7, 8 and 9) from his office to something different. “I was indisposed and therefore did not attend office”, said Singh who was spotted at his office for two hours after a break of three days on Saturday.
Official communications accessed by STATE TIMES make it clear that nine items of the cultural programme have been removed and replaced even after these had been approved by Raj Bhawan. Besides, it is clear that the communications on the award ceremony were between V.K, Singh, Special DGP Headquarters and Raj Bhawan and a private organisation like PWWA had no role in it.
Items replaced and removed from the approved schedule during the night intervening March 6 and 7 include the Bunty & Babli hit song ‘kajra re, which was to be played by Nahida and Chering Dolma, zalima’ song, which was to be performed by Yaseen Firdaus and Shreya Gandral, Break Dance by Sandeep Singh, Bahubali song by Anil Kumar, ‘gulabi aankhen’ which was to be played on saxophone by Mushtaq Ahmad, famous Ghazal ‘Aaj jane kii zidd na karo’ to be sung by Bashir Ahmad Mastana, ‘ek chatur naar’ song by Mangal Singh. Famous Qawwali ‘khwaja mere khawaja’, which was to be sung by Arshid and Umer Rasool besides current Bollywood hit ‘mere rashke qammar’ by Abid Ali were also removed from the list at the eleventh hour.
However, the famous Mission Kashmir song ‘bombro bombro’, which was originally compiled by Dina Nath Naadim for historic Kashmiri opera of 1950s, was left intact.
“What’s obscene or indecent in these songs? There’s in fact great creativity and artistry in the Bollywood songs like ‘kajra re’. This creativity has been acclaimed at national and international level”, V.K. Singh asserted.
“We are a well-knit team with great camaraderie in J&K Police and I have not made an issue out of it. But if anybody raises fingers on my sense of judgment and selection, I would like to ask who has given a non-official organisation any authority to snatch away the official initiatives of the J&K Police. How can a lateral entrant change the programme approved by Governor? How can the guests invited by J&K Police attend a function hijacked by a non-official organisation? It has also security implications”, Singh said.
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