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CAA puts Waters and Aziz on same page

Pink Floyd co-founder: ‘This kid has got a future’

Our Special Correspondent New Delhi Published 27.02.20, 09:02 PM
Roger Waters in London on February 22

Roger Waters in London on February 22 (AP photo)

Pink Floyd co-founder and guitarist Roger Waters this week publicly recited an English translation of a poem written by “a young poet and activist in Delhi involved in the fight against Modi and his racist citizenship law”.

Waters recited the poem — Aamir Aziz’s Sab Yaad Rakha Jayega, written in the aftermath of the mob violence targeting JNU students in January and whose recital at Shaheen Bagh has made it an anthem of the protests against the new citizenship regime in India — at a rally in London on February 22 demanding the release of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.


A video clip of Waters reciting the poem began doing the rounds on social media on Thursday. At the end of the recitation, Waters says “this kid has got a future”, and the crowd applauds.

Aziz, a Mumbai-based ad and film scriptwriter who studied civil engineering at Jamia Millia Islamia a decade ago, came into the limelight with his song Achchhe Din Blues last March. The following month he released The Ballad of Pehlu Khan, on the dairy farmer lynched by cow vigilantes in Rajasthan’s Alwar in 2017.

He got YouTube fame with the poem Main Inkaar Karta Hoon (I refuse) during the protests against the new citizenship matrix in December. The video was shot at a protest site. Another poem, Jamia ki Ladkiyan, lionised the women protesters of the university.

This January Aziz released his poem video Sab Yaad Rakha Jayega (Everything will be remembered).

Hailing from the outskirts of Patna, Aziz had been active on the campus theatre circuit, performing plays written by Badal Sarkar and Habib Tanvir. His song writing is influenced by the CPI’s Indian Peoples’ Theatre Association, the CPM’s Jana Natya Manch and American folk musicians Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash.

The English translation recited by Waters:

Everything will be remembered.

Killers, we will become ghosts

and write of your killings,

with all the evidence.

You write jokes in courts,

we will write justice on the walls.

We will speak so loudly that even the deaf will hear.

We will write so clearly that

even the blind will read.

You write injustice on the earth,

We will write revolution in the sky.

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