‘If we can follow preapproved scripts why can’t you,’ govt asks Alhamra performers


(Disclaimer: this is a work of fiction. Learn to take a joke; you’ll live longer.)

LAHORE – After Punjab Information and Culture Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan on Tuesday dissolved the governing body of the Alhamra Arts Council in Lahore and mandated production companies to seek a prior approval of their play scripts by the government, another notice was issued to playwrights and performers explaining the decision.

In the follow-up notice, signed by the federal and all provincial governments, sent across the country, artists, producers, directors, writers have reminded that if they’re concerned they can following the government’s lead.

“If we can follow preapproved scripts why can’t you?” asks the notice in question. “Just look at how closely, accurately and successfully we have followed the script. The success here isn’t just in accurately following what is written in the script, but also in how the play has been made truly a spectacle not just for the domestic audience but international as well,” the notice adds.

Further addressing the concerns of the theatre performers, the letter explained that in complete contrast to the media uproar, the artists had nothing to worry about.

“There are so many of us living without performing in theatre,” the notice said. “Then there are others who no longer live. We are all going to die anyway.”