A couple of classical musicians worried about the fate of instrumental music students in Afghanistan: The Tribune India
Calcutta, August 27
Indian classical music instrumentalist couple Pt Abhishek Adhikari and Dr Murchana Adhikary Barthakur, who taught sitar and sarod to their students in Afghanistan, now live with worries for their students after the country was taken over by the Taliban and the deadly explosion at Kabul airport.
They are in contact with some of their Afghan students through Facebook Messenger.
The couple had been associated with the Afghan government run instrumental music institute – National Institute of Music of Afghanistan – from 2012 to October 2019, then left the institute and returned to India.
They were addressed with reverence, like Ustad Abhishek and Ustad Murchana in Afghanistan.
After 2019, on their own initiative, the duo continued to give online music lessons to enthusiastic female and male students in Kabul until things came to a halt due to the takeover of Kabul by the Taliban in mid-August.
Pt Abhishek told PTI somewhere in North India, “Our students are afraid to practice or listen to music because the Taliban are against music. Secretly, few of my students, living in the same neighborhood , gathered at their home to listen to Indian classical music, they did so after closing the door and windows and making sure no decibels were coming out.
“As they informed me about this, I asked them to always be careful about their lives and their safety,” said the affable couple of music teachers who had visited the Kabul Institute twice a year. from 2012 and from 2015 until the start of 2019. .
Saying he was trying to contact his students after hearing about the deadly airport blast on Thursday, Pt Adhikari said on Friday his concerns had grown for the safety and well-being of supporters and friends based there- low.
“So far, my students are safe. I contacted them immediately after learning about the explosion at Kabul airport. But I am trying to get more updates,” he said. he informed.
The classic said that the director of the institute told him the other day that he wanted all music teachers and students to be able to leave Kabul, but it currently seems filled with uncertainty because the Taliban do not want that Afghan nationals leave.
When they took Kabul this time, the Taliban first said that they would not harm artists, professionals, that they would not prevent women from practicing their profession. They wouldn’t take away personal freedom, he said.
However, if we are to believe the reports that have poured in of it in recent days, “it seems that even though there are moderate voices in the militia, it has been taken up by extremists who strictly believe that music and l art should not be practiced and that women should live within,” he added.
The couple used to go to Afghanistan as guest teachers twice a year from 2012 to 2015. From 2015 to September 22, 2019, they were there as permanent teachers of Sitar and Sarod.
The institute had about 350 students interested in Indian classical instruments. —PTI