Committee calls for devising effective mechanism to redress artists’ issues


ISLAMABAD: A special committee formed by Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif for the welfare of artists, in its second meeting held here Tuesday, decided to devise an effective mechanism to redress the problems of artist community at a national level.

“A single definition of ‘artist’ should be implemented at the federal and provincial level and the artists related to different fields of fine arts should be categorised in the light of that definition”, the committee suggested. The meeting was presided over by Adviser to Prime Minister on National History and Literary Heritage (NHLH), Irfan Siddiqui.

While Chairman of Pakistan Bait ul Mal (PBM), Barrister Abid Waheed Sheikh; Chairman Film Censor Board, Mubashir Hasan; Director General of Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA), Jamal Shah; Secretary NHLH, Amir Hasan; and officials of Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA), Housing and Works, and Cabinet Division also attended the meeting.

Speaking on the occasion, Irfan Siddiqui underlined the need to devise a system which can ensure better coordination between provinces and federation. He said PM Nawaz Sharif aspires to provide maximum support to the deserving artists in such a way that they may not feel any humiliation. Irfan Siddiqui recommended forming a proper database carrying the details of the artists so that the process of distribution of financial assistance to them can be made transparent and fair.

Provincial Secretaries related to culture subject gave a detailed overview of the existing welfare schemes for artists being implemented in their respective provinces. Irfan Siddiqui apprised the committee members that a report based on comprehensive and practicable recommendations will be submitted to the prime minister by the end of this month.

On the occasion, Abid Sheikh also briefed the participants about the PBM’s recent initiatives for extending financial assistance to the poor artists including Iftikhar Qaiser, Nusrat Ara and Shakir Shuja Abadi. The other officials also gave their valuable inputs for realising the dream of artist’s welfare during the meeting.