In an entertainment industry, notorious for robbing artistes of their rightful resources Arbaaz Khan's munificence comes as a pleasant surprise. After reading the story in a daily tabloid, Arbaaz touched base to say he is willing to compensate Razia Beghum's family, though Arbaaz also made it clear that he doesn't really owe anyone any compensation.
Says Arbaaz, "Every week we've someone or the other claiming to be the original composer-singers of 'Munni Badnaam'. I can understand the eagerness to make a claim over something as successful as this song. The truth of the matter is, the original version of 'Munni Badnaam' ('Launda Badnaam') is a paaramparik (traditional) song. It therefore belongs to no one and everyone."
Arbaaz further explains, "When someone comes to me with a script, I don't ask him where it came from, its origins, is it taken from a Hollywood films, etc etc. I presume it is original and that there will be no copyright issues. Similarly with a song, the composer (Lalit Pandit) played 'Munni Badnaam' for me. I liked it. I reserved it for my film. End of matter."
However, on humanitarian grounds, Arbaaz is willing to provide a token amount of money to Razia Beghum's family. "I understand where they come from. I understand how much the money would mean to them. Although legally we don't owe them any money, on humanitarian grounds because they've a link with the song, I'm willing to offer them a token amount. They can come to me next month after the New Year's and I'll hand over the cheque to them."
Arbaaz is clearly unhappy with Bhojpuri star Manoj Tiwari's involvement with the matter. "He first objected to my tweeting on Ashmit Patel asking my followers on Twitter to vote for Ashmit. Why not? He is my friend. And if I've a platform to support him, why shouldn't I? And by the way I also tweeted for Seema Parihar. But she was evicted. So it's not as if the voting pattern is influenced by my tweets."
Arbaaz is exasperated by Tiwari's attempts to get singers compensated for 'Munni Badnaam'. "He first said Tarabano Faizabadi should be given money. He then said Razia Beghum. Why should I give money on his say-so? We have a heart and we in this family know how to be charitable."