Pakistani singer Shafqat Amanat Ali, who is being criticised for a botched up rendition of his country's national anthem at the India-Pakistan match in Kolkata, says only the weather can be blamed for the "technical problem" that played spoilsport in the "great moment".
Shafqat Amanat Ali
The popular singer faced the ire of his fans on social media, who not just condemned him for "forgetting lyrics" of Pakistan's national anthem, but also for bringing "bad luck" to the cricket team, which eventually lost the match to India on Saturday.
"The only thing which is to be blamed was weather as it rained a lot on Saturday and it upset the whole schedule... We couldn't do anything with the rain, due to which we couldn't do an audio check (before the performance) and I was not aware of the problem waiting for me out there," Ali told the media here on Monday.
He said that while he knew there was "some technical problem, at that time the only thing I thought was that the national anthem shouldn't stop in between as it would have looked odd".
Bollywood icon Amitabh Bachchan sang the Indian national anthem at the opening ceremony of the match at Eden Gardens. Against him, a short filmmaker has filed a police complaint for singing "the national anthem in 1 minute 10 seconds while the mandatory time is 52 seconds".
Ali says people should respect artistes.
"People who unknowingly criticise us (artistes) for any mishap, should be asked why are they doing so. Such people should understand one thing that an artiste's art is a public property, but that artiste is not. His voice and his talent is a public property, but that man is not," Ali told IANS.
The 'Manchala' singer was also upset about being "abused".
"I can do it too, but I feel that that there are a lot of other ways to express your emotions than abusing. These people do it for attention," he said, adding that he would not want to criticise anyone for whatever happened.