London, May 31 : Renowned singer and former Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) member, Abrarul Haq, has expressed his regret for participating in a concert in London shortly after his resignation from politics. In an interview with a local news channel, whilst being questioned by Waseem Badami, he acknowledged the criticism he received and apologized for his actions, stating that if Pakistanis were unhappy, he should not have been in London.
Speaking about his participation in the concert, Haq explained that the event was scheduled months before his departure from PTI and that he had addressed this during a recent press conference. He clarified that the concert was organized as a charity event for a hospital under the Sahara Trust banner. “I performed this event, without any remuneration, just for Sahara For Life Trust,” he explained.
He went on to set the context for how things went down. Explaining that his press conference and exit from politics happened right after, Haq highlighted an aspect of the whole ordeal that he left out. “If I hadn’t gone there, our registration for Sahara would have been cancelled in London, we could have had a case against us.” He emphasises that it was a prior commitment and had he not followed through, it would have resulted in legal action that would prove to be detrimental to all those involved with the charity.
He went on to clarify that he was, in fact, not mobbed by PTI workers, but by ‘planted’ individuals. “There was no one from PTI there. They were planted people and journalists who attacked me and said they wanted to question me. I thought, why should I not answer?”
He explained how the tussle between him and his own team members was captured, where he wished to answer questions, but was constantly told not to. He further stated, “I did not go there to enjoy. I went there for a cause that had been fixed two months prior.”
The Nach Punjaban singer continued to state to Badami, “I should not have gone there. If my people are unhappy with me, then I should not have been there.” He further continued to say, “I didn’t realise that I could not convince them that the activity was for a hospital. We have a registered charity there, it will close. Many people said that I should not have done so. Some people also said that I should have followed through with my commitment. Both sides are right, because on one hand, there is a big cause, and on the other -”
Badami interjected at this point, asking if it had been better if he hadn’t gone, and whether or not he was apologising. “So, do you think it would have been better if you didn’t go? Are you apologising?” questioned the host. Haq, with an evidently perplexed nod, stated, “Today, my people are upset with me. I want to ask them what I can do for them. I am worried about this. I have merely presented my case to them, but I am very hurt.”
Recognizing that some individuals’ sentiments were hurt by his involvement in the concert, Haq offered his apologies. In the interview, he also emphasized that his decision to leave PTI was not influenced by any external pressure. It is noteworthy that Haq joined a significant number of party leaders who resigned from PTI following the May 9 violence. He announced his departure from the party through a press conference held in Islamabad on May 27.
PTI supporters mobbed the artist after his performance. The incident, marked by heated exchanges and physical altercations, prompted the organisers to call the police to restore order, reported Express News. Haq had been invited to London to perform in a concert at an “expo” as per his correction of the news that stated that he was in the city as a part of a concert arranged by the housing society of Pakistani business tycoon Aleem Khan. Adhering to the planned schedule, the singer delivered a memorable performance, enthralling the audience with his popular songs.
However, trouble ensued during the media interaction session that followed the concert. PTI workers surrounded Haq, leading to a tense atmosphere and a clash between the party workers, the singer’s guards, and members of the media. As the situation escalated, the concert’s administration contacted authorities.
London police swiftly responded to the scene and took control of the situation. To ensure Haq’s safety, they escorted him away from the venue in their custody. The incident left the singer visibly shaken, as evidenced by a circulating video in which he refused to exit his vehicle following the commotion at the concert.