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Pak Pashto singer starts music classes for Afghan refugee girls

By Hamza Ameer
Islamabad, Nov 15 (IANS) Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August, families have been using legal and illegal means to flee and take refuge in the nearest neighbouring country Pakistan amid fears of a hardline rule of law, which became a living nightmare for females during the previous Taliban rule.

Being in Pakistan and living under refugee status brings with it, restricted and limited life, along with an identity crisis that vetoes many opportunities. For females, aspiring for a better future, none or meagre facilitation is provided in comparison to male members, which is taken as part of the Afghan culture.

However, a well-known Pakistani singer has taken upon herself to ensure that the refugee girls live their dreams.

Shakila Naz, a known Pashto language singer, has started music classes for refugee girls, who recently escaped from Afghanistan after the Taliban rule.

Naz says she decided to teach these young girls music and singing, after noticing their love for music.

"I feel sorry for the Afghan singers who fled the Taliban and reached Pakistan leaving their households behind. I decided to teach these girls music after discovering their love for singing during my meeting with the refugee families."

Naz stated that the situation of music for females and males is not good in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover.

The Taliban interim government has already claimed to kill known Afghan singers, forcing others to flee the country or be in hiding.

Naz, who has been nominated for Pride of Performance Award and was conferred with Afghanistan's most prestigious award Milli Dranaway Award, which is the National Award of Honor, on August 19, 2020, said that she received immense respect by the Kabul government and people in the past.

"The government of Afghanistan gave me huge respect by conferring of its most prestigious awards, Milli Dranaway Award. I cannot explain in words the love and respect I received in Afghanistan both from the government as well as its people.

"I cannot forget the fact that Pakistani and Afghan people are one and they should help each other in the hour of need. This is why I decided to teach Afghan girls and play my part for preserving the music in the war-torn country," she added.