Skip to main content

It’s not difficult to be famous in the times we live in today. Social media has given each and every individual a massive audience and if you’re talented, quirky or different (or in some cases even just good looking), you might become the next viral sensation. That’s what happened in the case of Arshad Khan, who went from being a ‘chai wala‘ to ‘the chai wala,’ aspiring actor/model/host. What exactly will Arshad Khan do with his overnight fame? We don’t know and it seems like neither does he.

Unfortunately, not many people in the entertainment industry are interested in cultivating talent or skill in Arshad Khan. They’re interested in him right now because he brings in the numbers and ratings, but what happens once Arshad’s novelty wears off? Will the industry still be calling him to morning shows and paying him to endorse their brands? The answer to that is a sad no.

That’s what our problem is with the Arshad Khan phenomena. People argue that the ex chai wala is making money now and doing well for his family but money isn’t the only thing that empowers people. It’s like that famous Chinese proverb, “You give a poor man a fish and you feed him for a day. You teach him to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Our industry is not giving Arshad Khan sustainable economic empowerment. Not yet at least.

On the other hand, there’s another viral star making waves over social media and his name is Abid Brohi, a tea-seller from Balochistan who doesn’t know how to read or write. ‘The Sibbi Song’ is Patari’s first song from their Tabeer program, a platform which will bring new talent forward, and it features Abid rapping confidently to SomeWhatSuper’s groovy tunes. The SomeWhatSuper boys are making explosions of their own: they first came into the scene with the chart topping ‘Bandook‘, a song that quickly became everyone’s workout song and was being played at every shaadi/mehndi in town. They were again in the news for giving powerful music to Ali Gul Pir’s ‘Modi Teri‘ which was another viral hit, and now the boys are back at it with ‘The Sibbi Song’.

According to Patari, the Tabeer program will include people from all walks of life such as tea sellers, sweepers and peons who would like to showcase their musical talent but have no place to do it. This is how our industry needs to nurture youngsters instead of using them for their own benefit and anyone who is still arguing over Arshad Khan’s success needs to take a look at what Patari has done for Abid. Here is a boy, who isn’t being celebrated for his looks but for a skill.

There are enough people in the industry who are famous even though they don’t know how to do anything. Sadly, our industry wants to make Arshad Khan like themselves. But can we please introduce talent to fame?

Watch ‘The Sibbi Song’ here and decide for yourselves: