18 October 2014 – Kushal Sunar From Nepal and Mohammed Shakeel Ali from Pakistan win popular singing contest for laborers in the UAE named “Camp Ka Champ” literally meaning champion of the labour camp.
Working long hours under the heat of Gulf and taking shelter in a crowded rooms, events like this one does brings some smiles to laborers and does change the atmosphere of the camp as well.
UAE in the Gulf is one of the best and most organized place to work as compare to the other countries in the region, government has very tough rules to follow and labor rights are implemented slowly in various sectors which are attracting more migrant workers in the country from country like Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Thailand, Philippines and other Asian Countries. Migrant workers are the key backbone of development of UAE which was well understood by the government and private companies here.
Dubai: Belting out Bollywood hits in the middle of a labour accommodation, 22-year-old Kushal Sunar was living his dream for one night. Grooving to his songs, thousands of construction workers enjoyed a night of music away from the city’s glamorous skyline.
Some of the moments of camp ka champ in slides below:
Inside Sonapur — a residential colony for construction workers in Dubai — Sunar, a crane operator by profession, was living a moment he had cherished for a long time.
“I always wanted to be a singer but life had a different plan,” remarks Sunar .
Away from the din of construction sites, Sunar was enjoying his new-found fame as the winner of Western Union Camp Ka Champ, a popular singing competition for workers. He and his colleague Mohammed Shakeel Ali were the joint winners of the eighth season of the competition on Thursday night.
The massive Bollywood singing and trivia competition scouts for singing talent in more than 100 camps across the UAE. This year, 3,200 workers auditioned for the show, progressing through different rounds of ‘Antakshari’.
Sunar and Ali were the winners of this year’s Camp Ka Champ.
“Before taking up a career in construction, I auditioned as a singer in many places. Everywhere I went, there was rejection,” remarked Ali.
Giving away cash prizes, television sets, air tickets, mobile recharge vouchers and electronic gifts, the competition is a hit with workers. For Ali, more than the gifts, performing in front of thousands of people was nothing short of a dream come true.
“I never thought a day would come where I would sing in front of so many people. Each one of us who came here enjoyed the show,” he added.
The top three teams won a series of prizes, including an Air Arabia ticket to go see their families.
“Air tickets can be quite expensive and that’s why I had a very big smile on my face when I knew I won the air ticket. Sometimes, it can cost us our entire salary to pay for tickets,” added Ali.
The competition which started in 2007 is one of the many labour-friendly initiatives which help put a smile on the face of construction workers. The UAE’s Ministry of Labour also provided free mobile phones for the top three teams — showing its patronage for the event. The event is organised by Right Track Advertising.
Vinod Kumar, director of Right Track and the man behind putting the show together, said it is a gratifying experience.
“Every year, more and more workers are becoming a part of the show and it is fulfilling to see all of them come and enjoy. That’s not all — one can find amazing talent in these labour camps. We are passionate about it and I believe this is one way of giving back to the people who built Dubai,” said Kumar.
There are some other event are held in the camps time to time such as sports, blood donation, health camps, awareness programs and many companies are providing training for better living as well.
Source: KT Online