Mumbai, Apr 19: Sonu Nigam, who created a storm with his tweets on the use of loudspeakers in morning prayers at mosques, addressed the media at his house to clear his stand over the issue. The singer also invited celebrity hairstylist Aalim Hakim to cut his hair, in response to a West Bengal cleric's fatwa offering Rs 10 lakhs to shave off Sonu's head.
The ace singer started off by saying that he didn't expect such a simple thing to become such a big topic of discussion. "I have considered Mohammed Rafi as my guru. My driver is a Muslim. I am not anti-Muslim, I consider myself secular," he said on him being labelled as anti-Muslim.
Sonu urged that "we need to be considerate with each other". He clarified that he's talking on the issue under a social context, and not a religious context.
On being asked why he was shaving his head, Sonu said, "It's not an agitation, not a challenge that I am throwing someone's way. I am shaving my head just to show that the person cutting my hair is a Muslim. It's all about interpreting things the right way. I exhort the media to present it like that and not in a confrontational way."
When analogies were drawn with his concerts using loudspeakers, the singer rebuked by saying that he sings only within the permissible time limits. Sonu also stated that "being secular doesn't mean we accept everything". Congress leader Ahmed Patel echoed Sonu's sentiments over the use of loudspeakers for Azaans in mosques. Sonu ended the interaction by quoting Ahmed Patel's remarks, "Azaan zaruri hai, loudspeaker nahi".
The singer then proceeded to have his head shaved at the hands of Aalim. Sonu emerged minutes later with a shaved head.
On Monday, Nigam blew up a controversy when he lashed out as "forced religiousness" in India after being woken up by the sound of the morning Aazaan from a mosque presumably near his home. "I don't believe in any temple or gurudwara using electricity to wake up people who don't follow the religion. Why then..? Honest? True? Gundagardi hai bus."
He went on to tag Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to look into the matter.
"Dear Devendra Fadnavis please note and help us force police to act against illegal blaring of Azaan and other such activities," he added.
He was trolled by Twitteratti and organizations with protests and some planning to move court against him.
Sonu Nigam shaves off his head, insists that he is not anti-Muslim