Over the past year or so, Pakistani stars have united behind the cause of ensuring royalties for artists and now they have reason to celebrate — the Senate passed a resolution in their favour. The resolution was introduced by Senator Faisal Javed Khan.
Khan had told Images that he had started working on the matter back in April but had to wait in order to compile the feedback from the artist community and their lawyers. "Actors are given royalties worldwide. If we don’t change the working environment of our artists or change the way they live, then we will have killed creativity ourselves,” he said.
Royalties are payments made to artists when a project that they have worked on gets a re-run or reused in any way.
The good news is that Senator Khan's perseverance paid off and the Senate passed the resolution on Monday.
Senator Khan has won a place in Pakistan's celebrities' hearts and they're all praising him for his efforts on their behalf.
"Finally! It was due since a long time," wrote actor Adnan Siddiqui on Twitter. "Our artists deserve security and due recognition of their work."
Fellow actor Humayun Saeed also appreciated Senator Khan and said, "Congratulations to TV/Film fraternity. Senate Pakistan has unanimously passed resolution with the objective to empower Copyright Board to fix royalties for licensing and assignment of work and ensure payments to artists. Thank u members of the house."
Sinf-e-Ahan star Ramsha Khan retweeted the senator and wrote, "This is such great news. First step in the right direction of paying royalties for artists. Thank you Faisal Javed Khan."
Actor Mikaal Zulfiqar who was one of the first artists to raise the call for royalties was delighted with the decision and shared his thoughts on Instagram. "Biggest news for media industry in years. Thank you Faisal Javed Khan for giving us our due right. This will benefit so many. The industry as a whole will prosper. Big thank you to the Senate for passing the royalties bill. Thank you to everyone who unconditionally supported this process."
Other actors Ali Safina and Vasay Chaudhry also thanked the senator on Twitter.
TV host and actor Fakhr-e-Alam also shared his thoughts on Twitter while acknowledging Senator Khan's announcement. Alam emphasised that it is indeed one of the "things that should've been done many many years ago." Calling it "great news", he also thanked the senator for his efforts and wrote, "hope many artists will benefit from this and when they most need support they could tap into this."
In April, Senator Khan had shared the news about the bill being in the pipeline after artists had taken to social media to demand royalties. At the time he also acknowledged that "there is no policy or law ensuring that artists be given financial credit for their work."
On December 24, Senator Khan also shared the news of the resolution being submitted in the Senate. It resulted in many celebrities rejoicing over the news of royalties being considered for the whole industry.