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Munni Song A Rage In Pak, But Women Named Munni Are Embarrassed

Islamabad, Dec 2: Munni, a mother of two, has been unable to open her little shop in Lahore since "Munni Badnaam Hui" from the Bollywood film "Dabangg" became a huge hit in Pakistan. The story
PTI December 02, 2010 17:51 IST
PTI
Islamabad, Dec 2: Munni, a mother of two, has been unable to open her little shop in Lahore since "Munni Badnaam Hui" from the Bollywood film "Dabangg" became a huge hit in Pakistan.

The story is much the same for other 'Munnis' on this side of the Indus who wish the song had never been written.

First it was the boys in the neighbourhood, and then the men got wind of the popular song from Salman Khan's film, and they would all come to Munni's store and sing "Munni badnaam hui darling tere liye" and embarrass her.

While the song - believed to be a copy of the Pakistani song "Ladka Badnam Hua Tere Liye" from a 1992 film starring Omar Sharif - has done wonders for Malaika Arora Khan, the "Munni" in the song, the Munnis in real life want to wish it away.

"Every now and then someone will come to my store and say 'Munni badnaam hui darling tere liye' in front of my customers. First I didn't pay much attention and tried to ignore it, but then it became a routine and I started to get irritated," Munni, the store owner, told The Express Tribune newspaper.

"Even sober and reserved people have sung this song loudly while passing by my store. I have scolded many of them but they just laugh and run away. Finally, I couldn't take this behaviour anymore and closed my shop for several days.

"Now it's been two months and either I don't open my store or if I do open, then I don't sit at the counter myself," she said.

Munni's personal life too has been affected because of the song.

"Many times they (boys) play it (song) on tape to tease me. This song has really become a nightmare for me," she said.

The story has been much the same for Shahida Munni, a school principal in Lahore.

Shahida is having a nightmarish time in school with students breaking into the Munni song after setting eyes on her.

"While walking in my neighbourhood, I am always scared that someone will start to sing the song. Most of the time my fears become reality as many boys either sing the song loudly or play it on the stereo," she said.

"They do it for fun. I don't understand how teasing someone can be fun for people. I am sick of this now and want this to come to an end," Shahida said.

This isn't the first time women have had to face problems because of the mention of their all too common names in a song. Popular Punjabi singer Abrarul Haq was once directed by Pakistan's Supreme Court to change the lyrics of his song because the name "Parveen" embarrassed many women with the name.

The song "Munni Badnaam Hui", like the film in which it features, has become a huge hit in Pakistan.

The song blared in the background when Geo News channel ran a montage of former US Ambassador Anne Patterson in a segment on embarrassing disclosures made in her diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks. PTI