Indian actor-singer Diljit Dosanjh has called off an upcoming concert in Houston, Texas which was scheduled for September 21 after drawing criticism for performing at the event at the invitation of a Pakistani promoter.
Dosanjh, who is currently on tour in the US, issued a statement on his social media account confirming he has cancelled his upcoming US gig after a letter from the Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE) was sent to the Indian Minister of External Affairs to revoke the artiste’s visa to stop him from flying out and performing at the event.
In his statement, Dosanjh has said he was unaware that a letter of the kind had been sent to the ministry and that there was growing concern over the concert itself. He further clarified that his contract was not with any one individual but an entity.
“I would like to state that my contract is only with ‘Shri Balaji Entertainment’. My dealing and agreement has been with them only and nobody else mentioned in the Federation Letter,” he wrote.
Dosanjh further added: “However, in lieu of the letter by the FWICE, I have decided to postpone my Houston show at this time.”
The singer-actor ended his statement but underscoring he remains a patriot.
According to the FWICE letter, which was also posted on social media, a Pakistani national by the name of Rehan Siddiqi was the promoter of the Houston event. The letter further stated: ‘His [Dosanjh’s] performance for the Pak [sic] National and people will set the wrong precedent in view of the current alarming situation between the two countries [India and Pakistan]’.
The letter then went on to request the actor-singer’s US visa be revoked in light of this.
Tensions between the two neighbouring countries is at an all-time high following India’s abrogation of Article 370 over Kashmir, which has resulted in condemnation from Pakistan which lays claim over the territory as well.
Earlier this month, Punjabi singer Mika Singh was temporarily banned from performing in India following his visit and corresponding concert in Pakistan.
Singh’s ban was eventually lifted after he tendered an apology over his actions.
There is also a ban on Pakistani artistes working in India, which came into effect last year.