Omar Abdullah, Adhan Sami exchange stinging notes over Valley concert

Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and singer Adnan Sami had a verbal duel on micro-blogging site Twitter for sharing the pictures of empty chairs at the music concert held last evening on the banks of the Dal Lake.
Omar shared a picture of empty chairs at the concert, which was organised by the state government’s tourism department at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Centre, with a comment “that’s a real pity”.
The former Chief Minister’s tweet drew an outburst from the singer who had performed at the concert. “You are a former CM. You shouldn’t be so unnerved by a music concert,” Sami wrote back to Omar.
The concert performed by Sami was organised by the state government’s tourism department with the hope that it would “boost tourism in the Valley”. It is the fourth concert by a reputed performer in Kashmir in the past decade.
The first concert in the region was performed by Pakistani band Junoon in May 2008, followed by a performance by ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh in December 2009 and a concert by renowned conductor Zubin Mehta in September 2013.
The latest performance, however, failed to generate any euphoria in the region, where increased cases of braid-chopping have caused hysteria and panic among residents. Some people who attended the concert described the columns of empty chairs as a “PR disaster” for the government.
In response to Omar’s sharing of pictures of empty chairs, Sami shared pictures of the concert showing an attendance of audience. “You obviously have bad sources who lie to you,” he told Omar.
“How does hoping you have a houseful suggest I’m unnerved? I’m glad people got to enjoy an evening of music. I used to like yours at one time,” Omar retorted.
The singer replied by accusing Omar of being “a sadistic sore loser” following which Omar drew out by saying he did not want to be part of a “gossip piece”.
Omar had earlier blamed the Union Home Ministry for turning the concert into a “propaganda” effort. “Why couldn’t it have just been about music? Why did the Home Ministry have to make it about propaganda?” the former Chief Minister asked. “The empty seats and delayed start are showing Kashmir for what it is — empty hotels, poor governance and general public despondency,” he said.