Social media is ablaze with allegations that lyricist Manoj Muntashir plagiarised the song 'Teri Mitti' from Akshay Kumar's film Kesari from a Pakistani folk song. Earlier this year, a video had gone viral on the internet in which a folk singer is seen singing his melodious rendition of the song. It was claimed that the singer belongs to Pakistan's Baloch. Now, there have been allegations that Manoj has copied the song from a 2005 song from Pakistan.
Reacting to the allegations, Manoj Muntashir denied and said that he would quit writing if the allegations were true. The lyricist told ETimes, "Those making these allegations should kindly check the video which has been uploaded many months after the release of our film, ‘Kesari’. And for your kind information the singer is not Pakistani but our very own Indian folk singer Geeta Rabari. You can call and check with her, too."
He added, "Geetaji has always appreciated my work and you can even ask her." "If it is proved that Teri Mitti is a copy of any song whatsoever, I will quit writing for ever," he concluded.
Talking about the viral video, an IAS officer named Awanish Sharan had shared the video on Twitter, praising the singer's voice. He wrote in Hindi that the song has been written by Manoj Muntashir and has been beautifully performed by Baloch singer Wahab Ali Bugatti. He also asked his followers to listen to the song as it will make their hearts happy.
When asked why he has been getting criticised and attacked for his songs and poems lately, Manoj Muntashir said, "People are attacking me because of the video I made on the Mughals where I have used strong words against them, referring to them as glorified dacoits."
He added, "If my YouTube videos and retelling of correct history upsets someone, they are most welcome to reason with me. But don't disrespect a song that has become an anthem for the armed forces. It's not acceptable."
Talking about the song, Teri Mitti was penned by Manoj Muntashir and composed by Arko. Singer B. Praak had lent his vocals to the song featuring Akshay Kumar. B Praak even won the National Award as Best Playback Singer for this track. The song has already crossed 3 billion views on YouTube.