Legendary folk singer Shaukat Ali passes away

By: News Desk      Published: 04:22 PM, 2 Apr, 2021
Legendary folk singer Shaukat Ali passes away

Legendary Pakistani folk singer Shaukat Ali breathed his last Friday at the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Lahore after a protracted illness, reported 24News HD TV channel.

A day earlier, his son Ameer Shaukat Ali said that Shaukat Ali’ has diagnosed with liver failure.

The legendary singer was treated at CMH on the special directives of Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa

Shaukat, known for his war-time patriotic songs such as Saathion Mujahidon Jaag Utha Hai Sara Watan and Apna Quaid Aik Hai among many others, had been unwell for the past several years.

The Ghazal maestro is one of the most prolific artists of the Pakistani music industry, with a singing career spanning five decades. He is also a recipient of the Pride of Performance award.

Born into a family of artists in Malakwal, a tehsil of District Mandi Bahauddin, Punjab, Shaukat Ali began singing, while at college in the 1960s, receiving help from his elder brother Inayat Ali Khan.

He was introduced into the Pakistani film world as a playback singer by the renowned film music director M Ashraf in the Punjabi film Tees Maar Khan (1963).

Shaukat Ali, apparently with his rugged looks has given energy to his performances as a singer. His initial love was ghazal singing. He used to sing the ghazal “Soz-e-Ghum Se Ke Mujhe Uss Ne Ye Irshad Kiya” in inter-varsity music competitions when we were also students during the late 1960s.

His ghazal “Jab Bahaar Ayi Tou Sehra Ki Taraf Chal Parra” caught the listeners’ ears. Then his Punjabi song “Kyun Dur Dur Rehnde O Huzoor Mere Kolon’ became an instant hit. His medley of Punjabi folk was appreciated on PTV’s Eid show in 1973/1974 where Ajays Band accompanied his performance.

Since the late 1960s, he performed ghazals and Punjabi folk songs. As a folk singer, he was not only popular in Punjab, Pakistan but also in Punjab, India. Shaukat Ali also toured and performed overseas wherever there were significant population centers of Punjabi immigrants like in the UK, Canada and the US.

Shaukat Ali was known for singing Sufi poetry with great vigor and a wide vocal range, for example Heer Waris Shah and Saif ul Maluk.

Shaukat Ali received the 'Voice of Punjab' award in 1976. In July 2013, he was honored with the 'Pride of Punjab' award by the Pakistan Institute of Language, Art and Culture (PILAC).

He gave a live performance at the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi, and was awarded the highest Pakistani civilian Presidential award Pride of Performance in 1990.

His song "Kadi Te Hass Bol Vey" was used in the 2009 Indian movie Love Aaj Kal. He also released a track titled "Jagga". Shaukat Ali has also given performances at the All Pakistan Music Conference events and also appears frequently on Pakistani television shows. He is the father of Pakistani singers Imran Shaukat Ali, Ameer Shaukat Ali and Mohsin Shaukat Ali.

In 2017, a Canadian company with the help of his son Mohsin Shaukat Ali, produced a one hour long documentary to commemorate his contributions to the Pakistani music industry. This documentary shows the struggles Shaukat Ali faced throughout his career and also includes some of his past performances as well as interviews with many singers including Lata Mangeshkar. It documents his journey from a young aspiring singer who later becomes a popular folk singer of Pakistan.