Folk singer Shoukat Ali says he needs the government’s aid in getting proper healthcare, not their sympathy. He is currently in a critical condition at the Services Hospital in Lahore
The singer spoke out after the Punjab Minister of Information and Culture Mian Muhammad Aslam and Chief Minister Fayazul Hasan Chouhan visited him in the hospital. Their visit was not well-received, however, as the singer said he wanted financial aid and not flowers.
“It is disgraceful and petty of the government to sideline an artist after he has passed his prime,” the artist said, quoted in an interview with a local media outlet.
The artist bristled against the “customary visits” and said that he really needed monetary aid as he could not afford prolonged treatment.
Shoukat Ali has not been feeling well
On November 20th, Ali was admitted for emergency treatment. He had a severe liver infection that needed urgent care. He is currently being treated by MS Services Hospital by Dr. Shahzad Cheema.
His son, Imran Shoukat Ali, is currently by his side in the Lahore hospital. It should be mentioned that the family has no finances to fund the legendary folk singer’s treatment.
Imran says that his father dedicated his entire life to Pakistan and his services should warrant more respect from the government.
The singer’s services to the country include a number of patriotic songs during the country’s major wars. The singer was especially popular during 1965 and 1971 wars, becoming a household name for the patriotic anthem Saathiyo Jaag Utho.
He is also greatly admired for the national song, Apna Parcham Aik Hai Apna Quaid-e-Azam Aik, written by Syed Zamir Jafri.
Other classic hits by the singer include Main Puttar Pakistan Da. The song appeared in the 1981 film Athra Puttar.
His music was featured in other films like 1981’s Chan Varyam and 1982’s Charda Suraj.
He is also known for his musical rendition of traditional Sufi poetry by Saiful Malook, Bulleh Shah and Heer Waris Shah. He has won the Pride of Performance award for his music career which spans over 55 years.
Shoukat Ali has been performing nationally and internationally for the past five decades, including a performance at the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi.