India is the largest democracy and every citizen’s vote counts. Rapper Mohammad Huzaifa Reza or ‘Awessum Frankie’, a first-time voter at 21, is not only a conscious citizen but is also reaching out to the youth through songs on social media and his YouTube channel. Through the song “Button Dabaa”, Reza urges voters to be conscious while voting.
“Vote, vote, vote, aa raha election,
kise kise doon, karna hai selection.
Pehle baar vote doonga, loonga ungli pe nishan,
Agar dusvi baar bhi ho toh banna na tum nadan.
Vote dena samajh ke, afwahein na suno.”
(Elections are coming, I have to select who to vote for. I will cast my vote for the first time and get my finger inked. Even if you are voting for the 10th time, don’t be fooled. Be cautious while exercising your vote, don’t pay heed to rumours.)
The song, written overnight, has been playing on radio, social media and YouTube. “This song is to reach out to the impressionable youth cued into social media. They should not be manipulated by all the information they get, but instead, read about the different angles to an issue before forming a perspective,” Reza told News18.
“After all, the responsibility lies with you.”
Reza feels that radio is a great medium for his songs to educate factory workers and daily labourers who have neither time nor access to social media.
Reza says doctored information on sensitive issues related to India-Pakistan, national politics and high-profile deaths is often put out on social media, which leaves a wrong impression on the youth. His songs in the past have used colloquial language to deal with social issues.
Although it sounds like Ranveer Singh’s character in ‘Gully Boy’, Reza’s songs have been online for the past two years. “My songs are mostly short, freestyle ones, to which the youth will pay attention. Long songs are more like a lecture, especially since they are about current affairs,” he says. “The idea is to be short, simple, and direct.”
While Reza will cast his vote for the first time in the upcoming elections, he hopes many more youngsters will understand the power of their vote and come out to make a difference.