Managed by a group of eight unemployed youth, YouTube channel ‘Kashmiri Kalkharabs’ is the first such channel in Jammu and Kashmir to have received a ‘Silver Button’, which, the California-based video-sharing firm gives as a token of appreciation for having crossed 100,000 subscribers.
With an aim to make people laugh in the conflict-ridden Valley, the members of the channel themselves act and self-produce small humorous videos on different themes concerning daily life in Kashmir.
“In a conflict zone like Kashmir there is a need of humour since most of the people are under depression, we try to make them feel good by our videos,” Parveez Ahmad Bhat, founder of the channel, told TwoCircles.net.
Hailing from Panzinara, a sub-urban area nearly 15 kilometres away from Lal Chowk, Srinagar, the youngsters enact in the typical local getup. They create small humorous videos in the Kashmiri language. Most of the videos have a social message. “I started this channel a year ago,” said 26-year-old Parveez. A graduate from Amar Singh College Srinagar, Bhat couldn’t find a good job and thus started the channel. “Because of unemployment I started the YouTube Channel but didn’t know at that time how to go ahead with it,” he added.
He was supported by his friends who like him were educated but unemployed.
Parvez says they make comedy videos while keeping all aspects and sensitivity of society in the mind. Apart from making videos on social, environmental and day to day issues, they also do comedy on political issues in the Valley. “We made a video a few weeks ago on Abrogation of Article 35 A, it was an instant hit and got more than 7k likes on our channel,” he said adding that “we also give social and political messages through our videos”. Having roughly started just a year back, the Channel has over 1,36,000 subscribers. “You were asking us why we did not receive the Silver Button even when we have got 136k subscriptions on our YouTube channel,” said one of the members of the group. “Here it is and it is because of your support and appreciation of our work.”
His colleague thanked Allah before asking its audience to continue to pour its support in future as well. A graduate from Srinagar’s Amar Singh College, 26-year-old Bhat was having a hard time finding a stable job. “Hence, because of the unemployment, I decided to start a YouTube Channel.” Bhat was initially supported by his friends who were educated but unemployed just like he was. “We didn’t have any serious plan. It was just a normal experiment, and it worked for us,” Bhat, who mostly plays the protagonist in the videos, said.
Bhat believes in making comedy videos while also keeping all aspects and sensitivity of society in the mind. Apart from making videos on Social, environmental and day to day issues, they also do comedy on political issues in the Valley. “We made a video a few weeks ago on Abrogation of Article 35 A, it was an instant hit and got more than 7k likes on our channel,” Bhat further said.
In the group, no one has formal training in what they are doing. They shoot videos on phone and edit it. “We are self-taught,” he confided.
“Now, we hold meetings where we discuss ideas and then we go for shoots in our locality,” he informed. “And we have started earning money from these videos as well,” Bhat added. These videos have also turned them into local celebrities.
“We receive a lot of love from people. People contact us almost on an everyday basis and appreciate our work. We had not expected this much,” Bhat asserted. “People tell us we have brought happiness in their lives,” he added. As per Bhat, the group now aims to improve the quality of the work after receiving the silver button. “We are happy to receive the Silver Button. Our hard work has paid us. Now we will start shooting videos on DSLR camera and will try to improve the quality of our work,” he said, adding: “We now aim for Gold Button, Insha Allah!”
Courtesy: Two Circles