Sartaj is an artist who is does not veer away from any subject, and when we caught up with him at his press conference in Jammu, he talked openly about how music can play a leading role in developing ties between India and Pakistan, a subject many artists will never talk about.
“I support that singers from both the sides (India and Pakistan) should visit both the countries to perform, because I believe that only music can bring India and Pakistan closer to each other”. “Music is the refine medium of strengthening bonds,” he said and added that “political set ups should not be involved into it because music has no bars and boundaries”.
“We have fan page across the border. I have admirers in Pakistan too. I love them because they have great respect for music and poetry,” he said, adding that in coming days “I will perform three concerts in Pakistan and hope that it continues”.
On situation in Kashmir, he said, “I never fear to come in J&K, I had three video shoots in the valley and I always prefer to make a video in Kashmir than in any part of the world
The Punjabi singer also appealed people to learn history and try to “unite with Pakistan instead of waging war against neighboring country.”
“There is so much negativity around but if partition had not happened in 1947 India and Pakistan would have remained one nation. We have so much in common but unfortunately a line was drawn which created physical boundaries and snatched a large portion of our literature,” he said.
He suggested that people, and poets in particular, should able to see beyond the borders and try to learn history to unite with our neighbor (Pakistan).
On growing alienation among youth of the state, he said, “People are not bad, but some situation makes them bad, these youth should be guided and motivated to choose the correct path”