Art & Culture, Jukebox, Now Playing

Arab Spring In Odisha

Recently many new and wonderful things have been happening across the world. The Arab world was struck by the Jasmine Revolution which has already uprooted 3 dictators and is threatening to bring “change” to a region spanning from the idyllic town of Marrakesh on the.

By Mar 5,2012  4

Recently many new and wonderful things have been happening across the world. The Arab world was struck by the Jasmine Revolution which has already uprooted 3 dictators and is threatening to bring “change” to a region spanning from the idyllic town of Marrakesh on the Moroccan coast to the by lanes  of Damascus in Syria. So much was the impact that evens the Saudi’s allowed women to participate in elections. Lakhs of people have rallied and protested at the iconic Tahrir Square in Cairo and thousands died like in Sirte and Misrata in Libya not just for change in their country but revolution in the whole Arab world in general.

What caused this revolution? Who triggered it? The answer is it may come as a surprise for many but its RAP music. I googled for rap music’s definition and came across this “RAP stands for Rhythm and Poetry. A type of popular music of US origin in which words are recited rapidly and rhythmically over a pre-recorded, typically electronic instrumental backing.”

I have a Libyan friend from Misrata who is a 21 year old architecture student and also a NTC rebel fighter who saw some major action when Gadaffi’s mercenaries rolled into his town , attacking all symbols and forms of the Jasmine revolution. Sitting atop his flatbed bed manning a Kalashnikov he fought whilst reciting lines from “Reyes Le Bled” by a rapper called “El General”.
It is a song that changed the Arab world.

“El General” whose real name is Hamada Ben Amor who had no resources and hardly any recording equipment in a country that banned rap music, yes you can get imprisoned if you sing or perform rap in some countries. With some help from 2 of his friends wrote, shot, edited and released a song “Reyes Lebled” on facebook and YouTube.

The song spoke about the condition of the people and brutal ways of the police and an ignorant president. The song went viral people young and old from all across the Arab speaking world started chanting and calling on the their respective governments to change or give way.El General wrote not just about him but also for the millions of people of across the Arab world were facing the some oppression by dictatorial military juntas and strong men like Hosni Mubarak and Zine Ali.His song sparked off the revolution in Tunisia(the place where it all began) and since then there has been no turning back the social movement whose ripples are being felt even in far off North Korea.

A few weeks into the revolution one fine morning El General was whisked away from  his home in Sfax and taken to a military prison but so powerful was the response of the  people that President Zine Ben Ali let him go in 3 days. After two weeks from the day of  his detention things had changed the revolution had succeeded and Zine Ben Ali fled  the country and El General performed for a crowd of 15,000 people at the capital  celebrating the nation’s freedom.

You must be thinking why the hell it is being written about in The Broken Scooter.

What strikes a chord is that El General is just like one of us, like the guys who are passionate about music in Odisha or any part of our country but sadly some members of  this fraternity are ending up as slaves to drugs and losing themselves to the bottle. Its time we wrote songs which highlight the social upheavals happening India. Its time we guys came up with something that would bring about change.

You never know like El General we may end up doing something great for a country reeling under scams, corruption.

Contributed by : Aditya Kiran Nag

To read more about this revolution click Here


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  • Afif729

    Really a very fine Article..i really like way it was explained…I must say a very fine work by you Nag bhai….m a fan…Nag bhai ur one f the finest and a very nobel person i hav ever met….Actually i was thinking abt the same dat frm whr all this rebel starts from and i am not at all surprised that i got the answer from you…
    You remember nag bhai old times…..i came up with a lot f doubts in frnt f u but each and everytime i got the right and very authentic answers from u…..Thanks bhai thanxx frm being thr…. love u

  • This is a really good initiative Nag. Most of us including I as well , are so caught up with our professional aspirations that we almost forget our responsibilities as a citizen of this Nation. Hats off to you man!!! I loved the overall presentation and valuable information that you have collected. Well, the question that comes to mind now is how Odisha is suffering?? I mean there are a lot of avenues where we are behind other states, but looking on grounds of corruption , Law & Order, etc. , I would say we doing fairly well. May be we can concentrate on very particular issues, which might look petty at the very first glance, but it might be affecting a large chunk of people who do not have exposure to voice out their grievances. Do you know of any such issues in Odisha?? I am sure there are many. Forgive my ignorance as I have been away from Odisha for quite a few years now.

  • adi

    the title told me who was the mastermind behind this article. btw good job done.. good example.. but i just dont agree with the point made in the concluding part of the article. i mean talent never gets lost in bottles neither to drugs.. If i may quote Frank Abagnale from ‘Catch me if you can’ ” Two little mice fell into a bucket of cream. The first mouse quickly gave up and drowned, but the second mouse, he struggled so hard that he eventually churned that cream into butter and he walked out.” Persistence bears its fruit.. U never know bottles and ‘woh jiska naam nahin lete” can actually be a source of motivation for some.. not promoting anything here.. but then again just pointing out a difference in opinion.. but yes then again..point is Got talent.. Step up

  • Daredevil Swayam

    Really a good and extensive coverage with lots of inspirations to be drawn of it….but i wld like to chip in a bit that such things goes a long way if it has a purpose and a passion behind it or else after becoming viral it ends up as a fad…..such a revolution in any scenario is possible if mere love turns into Passion!!!

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