The Legitimate Desk
In Kashmir the culture of singing and poetry by its woman is an age old practice. The pious land which has always upheld the values of women folk gave birth to many women who have not only been written in the history books for their extensive contribution to the society culturally and socially, however, are still ruling the hearts and minds even after leaving this world centuries ago for the heavenly abode.
Among such women are Habba Khatoon, Lal Sheri (Lal Ded), Raj Begum who recently passed away and many more. These women significantly contributed to the culture of Kashmir. And their legacy in cultural arena continues to see attracting the women to contribute in their way.
Presently there are scores of women who have been donning their mettle in the singing in Kashmir and have scaled the heights. Among these women are Shameem Dev Azad, Mehmeet Syed, Shahnaza Bashir, Parveen Azad and many more.
Parven Azad hailing from Lal bazaar area of Srinagar is one of those artists of Jammu and Kashmir who ruled the hearts of millions of people by her melodious voice. She has sung for dozens of Kashmiri albums and has ruled the young hearts in Kashmir.
This downtown pretty woman made her way into the singing despite facing lots of hurdles. In an ultra conservative society where the women have a limited role, Azad managed to keep her ambition of singing alive.
“I was into singing from my childhood and I was doing it mere for fun in my school and later in college,” Recalls Azad. Once I boarded a bus in Srinagar and came across one of my favourite song sung by Wheed Jeelani. So I went to Radio Kashmir for audition and I got selected,”
Azad after her selection didn’t look back and continued to sing for Radio Kashmir. Later on she started to make albums which turned much hit among the general public.
“Madno cxe chui myonui kasam”, she remembers her first song sung by her which turned a hit number among the people.
This dynamic lady who had pursued her further studies outside state despite her family restrictions for singing also composes the songs.
She claims she has a strong grip on writing songs and later singing herself.
“Singing was my passion and I never took it as my profession,” she says. The quest to grow continued for Azad and she also sung few umbers in bollywood Rockstar movie.
“I sung many Punjabi and Urdu numbers besides singing for Bollywood movie Rockstar”
An award winning Kashmiri singer has been performing outside state as well.
“I get chance to sing in many other languages but my heart beats for Kashmiri only. I always love and cherish songs in Kashmiri language,” she said while revealing that she is working on an album to be shot in cold desert Ladakh very soon.