Washington --- Over eight per cent of the one million doctors in the US are of Indian origin and at the forefront of the battle against COVID 19, says Indian-American singer Anuradha Palakurthi, who has released a musical video as a tribute to those risking their lives to save others.
Titled "Rukta Hi Naheen Tu Kahin Ha ar Ke" and produced by the Boston-based Juju Productions, the video is inspired by the song "Ruk Jaana Nahin" from the 1974 film "Imtihaan".
The lyrics as well as the title have been changed to mark the unflagging spirit of the doctors. "You never stop, you never give up. On this path will arrive spring.," the song in Hindi begins to the tune of the famous Hindi film one.
"The contrast between us sitting safely at home while these folks go willingly into harm's way cannot be starker," Palakurthi, who has sung live with Bollywood singers such as Kumar Sanu, Suresh Wadkar and BappiLahiri across the US and has done playback in South movies, said in a press release.
With everyone confined to their homes, technology helped the team come together and release the video on time, she said.
There were challenges in virtually collaborating with lyricist Sunayana Kachroo, music director Kamlesh Bhadkamkar and Vijay Dayal, who mixed it from Mumbai, she added.
"Making the video was an even greater problem because many doctors that we know could not send us their pictures for obvious reasons. The song features fewer pictures (compared to the friends we have in medicine) and of a lower quality (rushed by those that could send them)." The video, which can be seen on YouTube at: https://youtu.be/2Vm1_icJCl8, features real-life doctors in the line of duty, and pictures of their supportive families.
It opens with these lines -- "1 million doctors, 3.5 million nurses and millions of healthcare workers are battling Covid. Thousands of them are inflicted with the virus some have given up their lives. They continue marching fearlessly, unfazed and selfless. 80,000 doctors are of Indian origin (8 per cent of all) though the community is only 1 per cent of the overall US population." Palakurthi said the project is a "personal thank you" to the tribe of selfless warriors.
"We are honoured to have many such people in our close circle, serving the nation - putting their safety on the line," she added.
Prerna Laddha, a doctor from Columbus Ohio, described the song as a beautiful tribute.
"We are humbled and honoured that they thought of us and included us. Honour to be included as an individual and respected as a profession," she said in the statement.
Madhu Mathur Anand, an Indian American, said she had nine physicians in her family and the song is a monumental tribute to their efforts. "I have nine physicians in my close family- five of them amongst my children. We pray daily that everyone be safe... God bless you for this beautiful gift and God bless the physicians and all their teams," she said.
Echoing the wishes and support of many parents of doctors, Inderjit Virk from Massachusetts said, " 'Rukta Hi Naheen Tu kahin Haa rKe'.Wow, what beautiful timely lyrics. Have to admit it brought flood of tears in my eyes. It's personal- many kids in family are doctors. My prayers for all the young professionals in medical field! Lots of love to all!"