‘Music is forbidden in Islam’: Afghan folk singer dragged from home and killed by Taliban

Screengrab from a YouTube video which shows Afghan folk singer Fawad Andarabi playing the ghichak and singing.
PHOTO: YouTube Screengrab

Amnesty for all Afghans, the Taliban reportedly said

However, last Friday (Aug 27), Taliban forces dragged Afghan folk singer Fawad Andarabi from his home and shot him in the head in a mountain province north of Kabul, a local journalist told CNN

What made Fawad's death even more shocking was that the militant group had searched his home just a few days earlier, and even drank tea with him. 

His son Jawad told The Associated Press that his father was "innocent", and merely "a singer who was entertaining people".  

“They shot him in the head on the farm,” he recounted. 

Fawad was known for playing the ghicak — a bowed lute — and singing traditional songs about his birthplace, his people, and the country. 

Fawad's death also caught the attention of Afghanistan's former Minister of Interior, Massoud Andarabi. 

In a tweet posted at 12.08am on Saturday, he wrote, "Taliban's brutality continues in Andarab... they brutally killed folkloric singer Fawad Andarabi who simply was bringing joy to this valley and its people." 

In his tweet, he also included a video clip of the folk singer seated on a rug, singing while surrounded by mountains. 

The lyrics of the song that Fawad was singing in the video reflected the folk singer's love for his country: "There is no country in the world like my homeland, a proud nation,” and “Our beautiful valley, our great-grandparents’ homeland". 

'Music is forbidden in Islam'

In response to the incident,Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that the group will investigate the shooting, but did not provide further information. 

In another interview with The New York Times published last Wednesday, the spokesman sought to convey a more tolerant image of the group, stating that they were looking to 'build the future, and forget what happened in the past'. 

He also confirmed that music would not be allowed in public. 

“Music is forbidden in Islam,” he said, “but we’re hoping that we can persuade people not to do such things, instead of pressuring them.”

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claudiatan@asiaone.com