A Muslim reality TV show contestant’s rendition of a Hindu devotional song drew extreme responses. While judges on the popular contest Sa Re Ga Ma Pa praised Suhana Sayeed’s performance, saying it showed how music can act as a “symbol of unity” that broke religious barriers, members of a Facebook group criticised her for “exposing herself to other men”.
“Mangalore Muslims” had reportedly shared hate-filled messages against the 22-year-old for singing the song, but the controversial post was later deleted, according to NDTV. “Suhana, you have tarnished the Muslim community by singing in front of men. Do not feel that you have achieved a great feat; people who learn to recite Quran in six months have achieved more...Please give up the pardah as you do not respect it,” the post in Kannada read, according to The Indian Express.
The Karnataka-based singer drew support from various quarters after the hateful message was shared. The post on the Facebook page was followed by another, which said that the group did not mean to threaten or disrespect Sayeed. “We criticised the fact that she sang about multiple gods while she follows a religion that believes in one god. She had no right to level baseless allegations against the religion to gain sympathy,” NDTV quoted a translation of the post.