Games anthem no copy of ‘Waka Waka’, asserts Benegal

Games anthem no copy of 'Waka Waka', asserts Benegal

New Delhi, Aug 17 :As if one controversy was not enough, filmmaker Shyam Benegal, who is a member of the core committee of the Commonwealth Games, rubbished rumours that its theme song is a copy of “Waka Waka”, the official song for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

“It is not a copy of ‘Waka Waka’, it is a theme song. Different countries have their own theme songs and so is this one,” Benegal told IANS.

“It has exhortative lyrics. These are simple but uplift the spirit of the athletes to rise up and win. There are two versions of the song musically, and not lyrics wise. Most of it is in Hindi with some parts in English,” he added.

Touted as India’s version of “Waka Waka”, the song “Oh yaaro, India bula liya” (Friends, we have called you to India), is also raising eyebrows because its composer-singer A.R. Rahman, has not been able to meet the deadline for its completion.

Rahman has reportedly been asked by the Group of Ministers (GoM) on the Games to tweak the song before the opening ceremony Oct 3.

“They (Group of Ministers) approved the song Sunday night. They have not asked for any changes,” Benegal said.

“It will be released in 10 days with a proper release. There is a media plan for everything. It is 99.99 percent fine and it is only .01 percent which has to be looked at. In effect, it is Ok but considering that Rahman is a perfectionist – he won’t do it until he is completely satisfied with the outcome,” he added.

Asked if the filmmaker would wield the megaphone for the promo, Benegal said: “No, I can’t do anything. I am a member of parliament and I can’t undertake anything professionally for the government. I can only advice, conceptualise and help in other ways. In fact, four of us have conceptualised it (the song), including Bharat Bala.”

The Games are to be held Oct 3-14.


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