Pakistan: Islamic music prohibition discussed on Danish tv

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Pakistan:
Islamic music prohibition discussed on Danish tv

‘Our prophet was born to do away with loud music’, a mullah from Pakistan’s second-largest mosque was quoted as saying in a report from Pakistan on the national tv-channel DR1 on 18 March 2007

“This is a big crisis, and this is turning many Pakistanis into a more and more schizofrenic kind of behaviour where we are both expressing extreme Westernism and modernism and at the same time extreme conservativism,” explained Pakistani journalist and author Ahmad Rashid in a tv report from Pakistan which was produced by Danish journalist Marie Buss. He stated that Pakistan increasingly is influenced by religious hardliners, and that there are more madrassas (religious schools) in Pakistan today than there were before 2001.


The tv report showed an interview with Hafiz Mohammad Ashraf – a mullah at the Badshahi Mosque, situated in Lahore. The mosque is the second-largest mosque in the country, capable of accommodating over 55,000 worshippers. According to him, music is a bad thing and should be prohibited. The tv reporter also interviewed Amir, an owner of a music shop, who explained what he believes are the best qualities in music.

The seven-minutes report was broadcast in the programme ’21 S

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Home page of ’21 S

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Related reading on freemuse.org

A South African protest singer and the police spy assigned to stop his career meet face to face. A famous Afghan musician from Kabul tells his personal story on how he was forced to work as a butcher under the Taliban regime.

at The 2nd World Conference on Music and Censorship 28 – 29 September 2002 at WHO Conference Hall, Copenhagen, Denmark

The conference is open to the public.

The hills may once again be alive with music in Afghanistan, but the repercussions of the years of total ban on music are painful. When music is banned, the very soul of a culture is being strangled and only through the documentation of music censorship can we discuss and understand its effects.

The 2nd World Conference on Music and Censorship will examine the above cases, as well as present personal testimonies from a Palestinian cultural worker, a controversial Israeli/Palestinian singer, a censor from Nigeria, and other musicians, journalists and scholars from e.g. Sudan, Cuba, Israel, Malaysia, and USA.

Through documentation and open debate the conference will aim to create and support initiatives to strengthen free musical expression worldwide.

Among the speakers and moderators you will also find participants from various corporations, e.g. MTV, Radio France International.

A total of 30 speakers from 20 different countries will speak at the conference, which will deal with the many aspects and effects of music censorship worldwide.

Among the themes are censorship by corporative, governmental and religious bodies, media and music industry concentration, nationalism/protectionism, and limits of musical freedom caused by the September 11 attacks and other political events.

In connection with the conference, the Danish Film Institute presents two documentaries from South Africa and Afghanistan in collaboration with Freemuse. Both films will be introduced by the director/producer and the main characters.


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Read more about the film

Conference programme and information on funding here

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