The latest exclusions from Pakistan Idol, especially that of Waqas Ali, have left me baffled. I have seen uproar in social media over the attitude and poor judgments of Pakistan Idol judges. But now that selection is in the hands of the people, the results are actually worse. Immensely talented singers either didn’t make through to top-13 round, or are now being excluded one by one. It shows an interesting perspective in how we – the people of Pakistan – choose when given the choice, be it general elections or Pakistan Idol voting. I have the following few observations on the outcome of Pakistan Idol so far.
Bias against the judges: It has been a constant pattern that whenever judges criticize a participant, he gets through to the next round easily. Consider Muhammad Shoaib for example, he has been constantly criticized all the way and yet he made his way through to the top 11. His singing has always been mediocre, especially when compared to latest exclusion – Waqas Ali who could have been in top 3 when it comes to control over singing. Similarly Shahmeer Qidwai’s last performance was awful to say the least, yet he made it safely to next round since he was heavily criticized by the judges.
So instead of voting for good performances, people were busy sending underdogs to the next level which has sent comparatively good singers like Waqas Ali, and Mehwish home. Earlier, many good singers like Seemab, Ghazal and Midhat couldn’t make it to top 13 due to lack of votes. Kashif Ali barely made it despite being immensely talented.
Region based voting: Muhammad Shoaib is a good example showing that people are voting based on from where a participant belongs. Shoaib being the only voice from KP, keeps getting through to next level despite his mediocre performances since the start. And this is the same problem that we face in general elections, that is, voting based on baradri system.
Program pattern might not be suitable for Pakistan: There might be a chance that people don’t vote for outstanding performers thinking that everyone else would be voting for them and hence choosing to vote only for the underdogs. And since every vote costs a good price, therefore one person would have chosen to vote only once or twice, instead of voting for everyone he likes.
If things continue in this pattern and a non-deserving participant becomes Pakistan idol, it would be safe to conclude that Pakistan Idol was a failure in Pakistan. It just seems unfair that better singers were sent home while a mediocre singer gets the funding to create more music. What kind of picture we are painting for rest of the world?