It’s not often that Mumbai, the Maximum City, pauses for anything. But on

Thursday, May 25, it did. On the shores of the Arabian Sea at the picturesque Sun

n Sand Hotel in Juhu, unfolded a beautiful musical phenomenon. ‘Ghar Jaana Hai’,

sung by California-based vocalist Konark Sarangi, took the musical route to relay

an important message. And Mumbai paused to listen.

In the past decade, the effects of climate change have been here for all to see.

From unseasonal showers to never-before sweltering summers, we have all

experienced it. But for some large portions of India, climate change has

dramatically changed their lives. Maharashtra, Orissa and Rajasthan are the

worst-hit, with entire villages being forced to abandon their homes for search of

work due to water scarcity and drought. Sarangi’s song, Ghar Jaana Hai, brings

alive the plight of this huge migrant population whose voices are drowned in the

cacophony of our daily noise.

The event was attended by several known faces from the world of music, and

sports such as Ila Arun, Sanjay Manjrekar, K.K. Raina, Raj Zutshi. The video is

conceptualised by Orissa-based filmmaker Snehasis Das, who shot it in

Kantabanji, one of the worst-affected drought areas of India. It features veteran

film actor Raj Zutshi and Oriya actress Gargi Mohanty. The stirring lyrics have

been penned by Svati Chakraborty, the lyricist and co-director of the famed show

Satyamev Jayate. The soulful composition is by music directors Sanjoy Dazz and

Ambar Das, who have scored melodies for ace film directors such as Rituparno

Ghosh.

Mr. Konark Sarangi said, “As a trained Indian Classical vocalist living in

California, Ghar Jaana Hai is a homecoming for me in many ways. The plight of

people back home affected by this issue of Drough and Migration needs world’s

attention. And we knew that reaching out to them musically is definitely one of

the most effective ways. The words and melody reflect the pathos of the situation

and how human emotions are supressed by the evil powers of the calamity. The

song compels us to take notice and action. We hope we are able to reach out to

millions of people around the globe, through this engaging video and help find a

solution to this massive problem, together.”

Says Snehasis Das, “Drought has been a reality in the world for a while now.

Unfortuantely, most of the civilised world has turned a blind eye to it. Thousands

of families have been forced to abandon their homes to look for an uncertain life

elsewhere. The only way for us, the rest of the world, to deal with it is through

love, compassion and empathy. The video takes us to one of the worst-hit areas

of India in Kantabanji. You can feel how the place has been affected. How people

are affected. The stirring song is created to put the spotlight on an issue that

should matter to all of us. I really hope people read up on the situation and feel

inspired to contribute towards a calamity that is staring at us in the face.”

The video was played to the gathering, where it received a thunderous response.

Over refreshments soon after, everyone was seen discussing the drought

situation and what we can do as a society to help people affected by this

calamity. If well begun is half done, Ghar Jaana Hai seems to have hit home and

set the ball rolling.