Tigers get an official anthem!
Garima Sharma, TNN, Oct 22, 2010, 12.00am IST
Abhishek Ray is singing a different tune these days. He's composed music for several Bollywood flicks including "Haasil" and the more recent "Paan Singh Tomar", but now his compositions have been chosen by Jairam Ramesh as the official campaign for the tiger conservation programme.
And the icing on the cake? Abhishek's himself as ardent conservationist. Talking to TOI, he says, "By passion, I am a conservationist and by profession I am a composer. I am an authorized tiger tracker and I am posted annually in various parts of the country for the tiger census. So, I decided that the two sides of my personality should meet and come together for some initiative that spreads the message of saving the tigers."
The thought resulted in two anthems by Abhishek over a period of four months. Once he was ready with his compositions, he got together and sang these with Kavita Krishnamurthy, even working on the anthems later in his studio. The result was that when he went to meet Jairam Ramesh, minister of state for the ministry of environment and forests, the politico was impressed with the songs and chose them as the official anthems for the tiger conservation programme.
Says Abhishek, "The only other campaign earlier for saving the tiger has been a private one. This is the first time that a government body has chosen an anthem like this for spreading the message of saving the tigers. The anthems will go on air from today on radio and television and will also be put up on the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) website."
There are two anthems that he has composed, both almost 30 seconds long, with an English and Hindi punch line with each. Abhishek, who has been composing for Bollywood since 2002, says, "It took me a while to get these together and then I went to Mumbai to get work done on these. Kavita came on board, I worked on it, Manvendra, a Mumbai-based lyricist gave us the lyrics. You see, the tigers' existence or demise clearly impacts our lives. Therefore, it was important for me to convey this message to the people, and what better way than music to do it?"
Now all he wants, says Abhishek, is for people to understand the environmental concern and sing along.
LYRICS FOR THE ANTHEM
Tiger se jeena sikho,
Tiger ko jeene do
Tiger se jungle,
jungle se baarish
Baarish se nadiya,
Nadiyo se hai hariyali
Tiger hai toh hum bhi hain,
tum bhi ho
Saare Bharat mein hai khushaali
Punchline: If the tiger goes, he will not go alone. You may soon follow.