Punjabi songs are perhaps one of the most popular party songs these days. The reach and spread of Punjabi songs is considerable not only across India but also across the world. It is not a surprise that Punjabi music Industry is the leader in the non-Bollywood segment and is about five times the telugu music industry which is second largest in the segment. While Punjab’s music Industry gives Punjab a natural soft power to attract people towards itself, the state has failed to take out positives from its music Industry.
While Punjab rejoices the conspicuous consumption of Luxurious goods like Gucci, Armaani, Prada etc as characterized in the punjabi songs, it has forgotten the hard work done by its earlier generations to make it possible for the community to reach that level of consumption. Punjab’s prosperity has been a result of green revolution in 1960’s and since then many generations have sustained over the labour done in that period. It was the hardworking, entrepreneurial and work oriented culture of society that it could surge as the food basket for the country. However, post that state is yet to find its new grains which will leap it into the future.
Can Gucci , Armani, jaguar be the new grains for the state? Why not? If Ludhiana was once called Manchester of India then what can stop it to become the new fashion capital just like Paris. Punjab can produce what it sings and that is perhaps the only way for state to reduce its dependency on agriculture and move towards sunrise Industries. The state has to explore new grains for itself and revive its culture of having pride in production and not in displaying consumption.
Punjab is today reeling with contradictions. While it accepts on one side that it is a market for luxury goods but it still remains confused on how to deal with it. A classic example is that of alcohol products. It is surprising to notice that while Punjab’s government aims to earn revenue from consumption of alcohol, there is no clear agenda for production of quality liquor and make a niche for itself in the world. Rather than exhorting its industry to create world-class luxury products and export it all over the world , it has quietly accepted to become a market for foreign goods. Punjab needs to seriously think of opening up the environment for technology and design Industry while providing them all the support they need in their fledgling stage.
The solution to Punjab’s social and financial problem lies in framing a modern vision for the state. A vision that redirects Punjab’s enterprising nature in the new generation Industries while wading away the societal challenges imposed by directionless youth soaked in the intoxication of drugs. The penetration of Foreign brands in Punjabi songs is a reflection of the society’s obsession with the foreign goods while forgetting its own strengths and agenda to become production powerhouse of the world. It will be worthwhile to hear some day names of home grown brands in Punjabi songs which will mark the new dawn for the state in particular and the country in general.