Sidhu gives financial assistance to folk singer Idu Sharif
Sidhu gives financial assistance to folk singer Idu Sharif

Chandigarh: The Tourism and Cultural Affairs Minister, Punjab, Navjot Singh Sidhu today visited the home of famous dhadhi folk singer and living legend Idu Sharif, who is battling paralysis, and handed over the financial assistance of Rs. 2 lakh to the singer. On the occasion of visiting the home of the legendary singer at Manimajra, the minister was accompanied by the Chairman of the Punjab Kala Parishad Dr. Surjit Patar, Secretary General Lakhwinder Singh Johal and Dr. Nirmal Jaura.
It is worth mentioning that Sidhu was conferred the Honesty Award during Baba Farid Mela recently where he was also awarded the prize money of Rs. 1 lakh. The minister then had announced that besides the award money he would contribute Rs. 1 lakh from his own pocket and give the Rs. 2 lakh financial aid to Shiromani Dhadhi Folk Singer Idu Sharif who is struggling from poverty and indifferent health. The minister made good on his promise just 2 days after the announcement and handed over the financial assistance along with the Punjab Kala Parishad office bearers.
Assuring every possible help to the beleaguered family the minister also prayed for the speedy recovery of the legend. He also said that though this amount is not very big but it carries the blessings of Baba Farid Ji.
On the occasion, Idu Sharif and his son Vicky rendered the song 'Zindagi De Rang Sajjna' upon which Sidhu doubly assured the singer that he stands shoulder to shoulder with him in this phase of difficulty. The family of Idu sharif, having to make do with twin difficulties of economic hardship and a small and congested home, demanded that they be allotted a house or a space for it. On this, the minister vowed to take up the issue with the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and also said that the government would provide every possible help.
The minister further said that the BCCI had decided to give pensions to the former cricketers considering the economic problems that the ex-cricketer Salim Durrani had to undergo so as to make sure that ex-cricketers don't have to fall on bad days in their old age. Similarly, the famous artists, litterateurs and folk singers of Punjab who instead of going commercial devoted their entire life to the cultural as well as the folk arts, needed to be given assistance in the twilight of their life through the creation of a corpus fund. He said that constitution of such a fund would be seriously deliberated.
The Chairman of the Punjab Kala Parishad Dr. Surjit Patar on the occasion said that he is extremely thankful to Sidhu who has lost no time in providing financial help from his own pocket to the great dhadhi folk singer of Punjab. He also assured that whereas the Kala Parishad would leave no stone unturned to promote the diminishing folk arts besides cultural heritage of the State, it would also endeavour to formulate a comprehensive policy and take concrete steps for taking care of such legendary singers as Idu Sharif.

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