Sex Drugs Crime Against Women Issues Needs Big Discussion: As a graduation student at Amity School of Communication (ASCO), he came across as an affable, full of energy student, ready to do anything, of course, other than studies. He was among the key coordinators at two of The Big Picture, our National Media Festival, holding the centre stage, being part of the fashion shows, comic skits and anchoring the events. Ujjwal Kumar Sapra (UK to me) also excelled in taking the best girls of the Amity University out on dates, though he recalls how he was caught by me on his first rendezvous and was admonished.
Sapra today is an Indian-American rapper settled in Los Angeles. Like any Indian and Punjabi, he is concerned about rape culture, domestic abuse and drug pedalling being on the rise in India. “More disturbing is the fact that it is taboo still to talk about these crucial issues. Unless we discuss sex, drugs, crime against women and children it is not possible to spread awareness on these matters of grave concern,” he revealed over phone from LA last fortnight.
Ujjwal and Kumar Sapra to friends back home, has been in touch ever since. An actor, singer and writer, Sapra has turned a crusader and taken upon himself to write and make music on subjects, better avoided in public debates. “My songs talk about marijuana, cocaine, domestic abuse, sex education and lust, for a reason. We in India still believe by remaining silent on these matters we are preserving and respecting our culture. The truth, however, is otherwise. We are destroying it. Being in the West we have more power to say what we have to keeping” told Sapra
“Each song of mine is a campaign to create awareness amongst the youth”, he conveys. His ‘Ishq Nashila, Marijuana’ which is already making waves, having crossed 100,00 views on You Tube, is based on the theme that when we insist on giving sermons not to do anything, the youngsters as a rule must do the opposite and indulge in tasting the forbidden fruit. “Love prevails,” he insists.
Sapra, who is ready with Coco, his next on the “Love prevails” theme insists on ‘Ishq Nashila Marijuana’: “Love Trumps hate, but love Trumps drugs too.” The full of energy and peppy number convinces his love interest in the song to quit drugs and savour the power of love. While remaining neutral about her use of marijuana use, Sapra in a deft manner seeks to persuade her and pervades. “My song and video talk about the power of love over everything,” added the New Delhi born singer. He has been in the business of music for over 12 years — began playing drums, tabla and tambourine at the age of seven.
Though his batch mates and teachers, I’m one of them, remember Ujjwal Sapra, for things other than music and show biz, he was always part of professional theatre and had the encouragement of his family. Moving to the US he was at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) and the New York Film Academy for a course in acting and film making before turning to work in the music and film industry.
“I was producing and directing music videos for other artists till I began singing and rapping in Hindi, Punjabi and English,” he told this writer on phone last fortnight. The star in the making has produced four records with different music producers but his Punjabi English release Ishq Nashila’ has been first big launch. Released on You Tube the video is directed by AB Chandra.
The crusader’s other releases lined up are:
• Coco – Love Prevails
• Booty Beauty (Sex Education) Lets appreciate, let’s say no to rape
• Bebo – Yearning leads to everything
• Alway’s on my mind – How to get over break up
• She is the best – A song on Women Empowerment
Each song has a message for his friends and youngsters in the US, India as well as Punjab. Someday I’ll hit the stage in my country, said Sapra with a conviction as he spoke this journalist turned teacher.