“Pyaar ek tarfa nahi ho sakta (love cannot be one-sided),” said Subhash Chandra, Rajya Sabha MP from Haryana and chairman of Zee, on Zindagi putting an end to Pakistani content on the channel. At a press conference here on Tuesday, Chandra and his team announced a new line-up of shows starting October 3 — a roster that comprises Indian series, a few Turkish dramas, and no Pakistani serial.
“It’s an unfortunate decision that we had to take. When we started Zindagi, I promised Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that we will show their content, we did that, the audience here loved it, and these Pakistani actors entered our living rooms. But then something like Pathankot and Uri happen. If you want to fight, fight at the front, do not attack our soldiers when they are sleeping,” said Chandra. He also said the decision was made a day after the Uri attack.
His team reportedly called up Pakistani actors and musicians — such as Fawad Khan, Mahira Khan, Ali Zafar, Meesha Shafi — after the Uri attack to ask them to condemn it. “Not one of them has, even though we asked them to not mention Pakistan if they didn’t want to,” said Chandra.
Zindagi channel was launched in 2014, and its USP was the content from across the border. It also acquainted viewers in India with names such as Fawad Khan and Mahira Khan.
Joining Chandra on stage were actors, writers and producers of the new shows that will debut on October 3, including actor Anupam Kher, whose company is producing a show titled Khwaabon Ki Zamin Par. “While I still believe that art should have no boundaries, I think these artistes should at least condemn such attacks,” Kher said.
Chandra said that Zindagi still has 3,000 hours of unseen Pakistani content.