"I don't mourn her death as much as I mourn her last days of throat cancer," said Adnan Sami on Pakistani singing sensation Reshma, who died of throat cancer.
Reshma died Sunday in Lahore. The signer, who regaled south Asians with her folk singing, could have lived if only her government had looked after her medical needs, feels Adnan.
Hitting out angrily at the Pakistani government, Adnan Sami said: "I don't mourn her death as much as I mourn her last days of throat cancer where she was left to rot alone with no support from her government's Ministry Of Culture and the government-run 'Lok Versa', who are not only supposed to uphold the glory of the folk heritage, but also support artistes who create the folk heritage."
"Look at how Mubarak Begum or the late Mehdi Hassan are treated! What is the point of glorifying the artiste once she is gone, after abandoning her during her hour of need? The same happened with Allan Fakir, Mehdi Hassan and countless other stalwarts in the past. Now it is Begum Reshma."
"May she rest in peace. I know she is in a better place today..."
Reshma recorded songs for both Pakistani as well as Indian movies. Some of her hit songs are "Lambi judaai", "Mere chan pardesi", "Dama dam mast kalandar" and "Na dil dendi bedardi nu".
Pakistan, says Adnan, is no country for artistes.
"And then they ask why their artistes leave their country! Does anyone want to be at their mercy? God bless her soul."