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Why I Had Protested: A Protest Letter To Zubin Mehta From A Non Kashmiri

By Ravi Nitesh

10 September, 2013

Dear Zubin Mehta,

I am a non kashmiri, like you, with reference to domicile. A kashmiri, me and you are different on this ground, but we all are similar on the ground that we all are human beings. But if I will say that you are still different, while me , a non kashmiri and Kashmiri are similar in a way, then probably you will wonder. Yes, you will wonder because probably you did not see (or ignored) this aspect. It is in the context of understanding the sufferings of people there, and here you are completely different.

Now, without going much in length, I am writing this letter, just to convey my 'sincere' protest through this letter. Also, before reading more or chucking it, I would like to make it clear that I am a supporter of 'Free speech and expression’, I am a supporter of 'Art and Music' in all its forms, but still I protest.

I am completely blank in understanding that when you (with the help of the Government) are trying to use this concert to convey a message for peace for local people but these 'local' people are not interested in listening to you, rather they find peace through sloganeering, protest songs and all, then what is the meaning of your concert? Is it not true that peace should come from within? And if it is true, then let it come from the heart of kashmiris through their protest songs. Is it not ironical that you are trying to 'define' and 'distribute' the 'peace' for the people without knowing their consent? Are you 'imposing' and 'enforcing' peace?

Is your imposed performance of 'Music' for 'Peace' is not just like Government 'supplied' military occupation that also comes with 'messages' of 'safety' and has been made 'enforced' with the same 'rigid' attitude?

I request you to think over the fact that how your show is protected by hundreds of security personals because you are only selling 'artificial' peace.

Dear Zubin, as an admirer of music, I believe that music brings peace and harmony and it plays a great role in connecting people but I object when you come to 'supply' peace in the region that is suffering from the pain of rapes, murders and fake encounters etc and all in the veil of peace and safety. I regret that probably just because of your personal desire/ motivated desire intentionally/ unintentionally, you have become a cause of their sufferings again.

Zubin, people in this conflict zone, have their music and songs, have their writers and poets and you probably know that people here are famous for their culture full of love and peace. People here equally respect, invite all other writers and poets and many come here, sit and talk, teach and learn, and people here accept all those with love from heart. If you think that we here lives in trouble all the time, you are right but you must know that even in conflict zones, there are smiles, happiness, love, harmony, but it comes from within and is natural.

I protest because your performance was political rather than musical. Through your performance, Germany came into the picture intentionally/unintentionally and (tried to) recognize the need of Peace without going in the way through which the real peace can come. I protest because though Government of India accepted the German ‘request’ as a ‘challenge’ for it, but it never accepted any demand of including ‘third party’ in solution of Kashmir problem. So on one side, ‘Third party’ is interfering on ‘spreading’ (actually selling) peace but not accepting any such interference for ‘establishing and recognizing’ peace. I protest because like any other music lover, I too demand for unbiased music. I favor peace as a music of soul that connects hearts and makes the environment calm and peaceful, rather than taking the music as ‘challenge’, rather than making the peace, a commodity and selling it through marketed music, rather than making an environment of depression, suppression and oppression and diluting the sufferings of people who are really in need for a real peace.


Ravi Nitesh, New Delhi (INDIA)

Ravi Nitesh is a Petroleum Engineer, Founder- Mission Bhartiyam, Core Member- Save Sharmila Solidarity Campaign
follow on twitter: www.twitter.com/ravinitesh Blog: www.ravinitesh.blogspot.com



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