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Hadiqa Kiani and Kanika Kapoor indulge in a row after latter unapologetically plagiarizes ‘Boohey Barian’

Things have not been well between two popular singers of the subcontinent ever since Kanika Kapoor of ‘Baby Doll’ fame copied Hadiqa Kiani’s highly famous song from the 90s, ‘Boohey Barian’ without even giving Kiani or her mother the credit, both of whom together created the song for the album ‘Roshni’ in 1998, with Khawar Kiani writing the poetry and Hadiqa Kiani giving voice to it.

Hadiqa Kiani got highly upset when Kanika Kapoor released her song, listening to which any Pakistani or even Indian fan of Hadiqa could instantly know that it’s an outright plagiarism in terms of both poetry and composition. Kiani instantly took to her Instagram to say the following words:

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“Another day and another shameless rendition of the song my mother wrote. No one asked for my permission, no one has given me royalties, they just take the song my mother wrote and I recorded and use it as an easy money-making scheme. So far, it’s been stolen to be used in multiple Bollywood films starring the likes of Shahrukh Khan and Preity Zinta. It’s been stolen by every other singer who sings on stage while earning. And of course, by many singers who produce full music videos, some of these cover videos have received almost 200 million views on YouTube. The latter gives me “credit” by saying “original song boohey barian by hadiqa kiani”. Almost every time I have covered a song, I have bought rights to the song, asked permission of the artist or paid royalties to the artist because that’s the ethical way to do things. I’m alive and well, if you want to sing my songs, ask me first.”

The post went on and on, with Kiani also threatening to take legal action now, something which was not possible back in the 90s because things weren’t systematic enough. Still, she never sold the rights to Saregama India, said Hadiqa Kiani in a conversation with an Indian social media platform.

“We have copyrights documents dated from before ‘Roshni’ (the ‘Boohey Barian’ album) came out, registered with full rights and ownership. No company or entity was ever given those masters and no company has any documents with my signature on it giving rights. I have stayed quiet for long enough!” she said.

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In response, Kanika Kapoor, who has been told that a legal action will be taken against her and who has also been made to realize by several people that she has committed plagiarism, said that her song is entirely original, and that she and her team took two lines as an inspiration from the several versions available online because it is considered a folk song. Quite disturbed at being called out for stealing, the singer gave the following statement:

“It makes me sad that they think we stole their song, or are not giving them the right credit. But I think, instead of going negative, we have to come together and help each other grow. I have nothing against anyone who is saying anything negative or nasty. I have received a lot of nasty messages. It is sad to see people jump to conclusions without really knowing something,” said the ‘Chittian Kalaiyaan’ singer.

Despite this statement given by Kapoor, people who have been listening to ‘Boohey Barian’ ever since the 90s are not ready to accept that she, along with her team hasn’t ‘stolen’ the song, and are fully supporting Hadiqa Kiani, encouraging her to pursue her case so that such plagiarism of original Pakistani music may come to an end.

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