Singer Sonu Nigam landed himself in trouble for his recent statement in which he had said "it would have been better if I were from Pakistan" while taking a jibe at Pakistani singers getting work offers from India at the Agenda Aaj Tak Summit.
His statement didn't go down well with Indian audience who slammed him left, right and centre on social media. However, the singer has clarified his stance and slammed the Indian media for the misinterpretation of his statement.
"Sometimes in an attempt to make headlines catchy and sensational, some journalists miss the real content. Yesterday's Aajtak Summit happened so amazing, and look what have they reduced it to... My point about being better off being born in Pakistan was about the music companies in India asking Indian singers to pay 40-50% of their concerts remunerations to them, and only then they'll work with those artistes.. but they don't ask the same from the singers from abroad, namely Pakistan..! This was the important point I made... and these guys...! Changed it to "'I would have been better off born in Pakistan I'd have work come my way.. " What do I say. PATHETIC," Sonu Nigam clarified in a Facebook post.
In another statement issued to the media, Sonu said, "I have always been of the opinion that everyone should be welcomed in India. I'm very friendly to Rahat Fateh Ali khan and Aatif Aslam, Shafqat Amanat Ali has a lovely voice and I'm of this belief that everyone must get equal respect in our country but in the same breath I'd like to add that Indian artists should be given the same facilities as their foreign counterparts and If that doesn't happen then its unfair. In recent years the music business has evolved and most artists belong to a certain music company. The company earns by charging a percentage from every of it's artist's remuneration which is a great business strategy and is working well for all concerned. My only point was that this same percentage rule should apply to foreign artists as well. Only for the sake of equality and transparency of all artists from all over the world in our country."
Calling out the issues of the Indian music industry and treatment of singers in India, Sonu had said, "Sometimes, I feel as if it would have been better if I were from Pakistan. At least I would get offers from India."
He added, "Nowadays, singers have to pay music companies for shows. If we don't shell out the money, they will play songs sung by other singers and highlight them. Then, they will take money from them. Why single out Indian singers? They don't do the same with Pakistani singers. Atif Aslam is a very close friend of mine. He is never asked to pay to sing at shows, neither is Rahat Fateh Ali Khan."