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October 9, 2015
Ghulam Ali to perform in Delhi in December
NEW DELHI: Following the cancellation of his concerts in Mumbai and Pune in view of threats given by the Shiv Sena that the partry would disturb his functions, Pakistani ghazal singer Ghulam Ali left Delhi for Pakistan on Friday, saying that he would return in December for a performance in the national Capital for which he has accepted Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's invitation.

”Yes I have accepted the invitation and most probably I will be coming in December. I have always said that I will go wherever people invite me with love. I have been coming to India for the past 40 years. So, yes I am happy,” Ali told PTI just before leaving India.

"Ghulam Ali Sahib. Hum apke bahut bade fan hain. Abhi apse baat karke bahut acha laga ( I am a great fan of yours. Talking to you was indeed a pleasure). Thanks for agreeing to do a program in Delhi in Dec," Kejriwal said in his tweet.

On Thursday, Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had invited him to perform in Kolkata. “Music has no boundaries. Music is the rhythm of the heart. Ghulam Ali concert can be held in Kolkata,” Mamata had tweeted. Delhi Tourism Minister Kapil Mishra, who met him on Friday before he left, also had said earlier on Twitter that the national Capital would also be happy to host Ghulam Ali.

The organisers of the Mumbai concert scheduled for Friday had announced the decision following a meeting with Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray in the evening on Wednesday at 'Matoshree', the Thackeray residence in suburban Bandra. This was despite the fact that Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis assured that protection would be provided to the ghazal singer Ghulam Ali.

The Shiv Sena had said that they were not opposing Ghulam Ali but the terrorism spread by his country Pakistan. The party's film wing Chitrapat Sena had earlier in a letter to the management of the Shanmughananda Hall said that they would have to face the anger of its cadres if it went ahead with the programme of the artist from Pakistan, ghazal singer Ghulam Ali's concert. The Shiv Sena is a ruling partner in Maharashtra with BJP.

"We cannot sit and enjoy music in Mumbai while soldiers are being martyred in Kashmir. There has to be some sort of boycott," Aditya Thackeray, Sena chairperson and son of party chief Uddhav Thackeray, had said.

Ghulam Ali was born in undivided Punjab (now in Pakistan) in 1940. A disciple of Indian ghazal legend Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, a master of the Patiala Gharana of Hindustani music, Ghulam Ali's famous ghazals are Chupke Chupke Raat Din, Kal Chaudhvin Ki Raat Thi, Hungama Hai Kyon Barpa, etc. A part of Bollywood, he has been a regular performer in the subcontinent with a vast following of fans across borders. His ghazals bear the imprints of Hindustani classical music.

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