Junaid Jamshed: 7 interesting facts about the late pop icon that you should know

December 7, 2017

Junaid Jamshed and his second wife died on December 7, 2016 when PIA Flight 661 crashed in Havelian.

NEWS DESK: Junaid Jamshed, pop icon-turned-religious preacher, died last year on this day with his second wife when PIA flight PK661 crashed in Havelian near Abbotabad.

Here are 7 interesting facts you should remember about the late pop icon:

1. He wanted to become a fighter pilot

Jamshed wanted to join the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) to become a fighter pilot.

However his weak eyesight prevented this and he served a short stint in PAF as a civilian contractor. His father, Jamshed Akbar, was a Group Captain in the PAF.

2. He retired from music in 2001

In 2001, Jamshed retired from music and joined the Tableeghi Jamaat, a religious organisation.

When he died, he was returning from Chitral where he had gone for a Tableeghi Jamaat mission.

3. He was once accused of blasphemy

Last year, a mobile video circulated on social media, showing a charged crowd taking blows at Jamshed at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport.

The men were shouting slogans against the preacher, claiming he had committed blasphemy.

In response, he later said on his official Twitter account: “It is about time we as a nation decide that we will not let these religious fanatics prevail amongst us. They will be exposed and brought to task.” He also publicly apologised for his remarks and sought forgiveness, and the case did not proceed further.

4. His last call was with vocalist Salman Ahmed

Before leaving for Chitral, the naat-khawan received his last call from famed vocalist Salman Ahmed.

He exhorted the vocalist to capitalize on his talent in music to bring about good and positive change.

5. He left Vital Signs in 1998

Jamshed opted for a solo musical career as he parted ways with Vital Signs in 1998.

6. "Dil Dil Pakistan" was ranked third among the top 10 songs by BBC

In 2003, the BBC World Service conducted a poll to choose the most popular songs, which received around 7,000 entries from all over the world.

Junaid Jamshed top 10 songs

According to BBC, people from 155 countries and territories voted in the poll. "Dil Dil Pakistan" was ranked third among the top 10 songs.

7. Shoaib Mansoor's Khuda Ke Liye was inspired by JJ

According to JJ's friend, Shoaib Mansoor, the film Khuda Kay Liye was inspired by Jamshed's life. He had offered him the lead role in place of Shaan Shahid.

When offered the role, Jamshed maintained that he will "shave his beard" for the film and the role for Jamshed was written by Mansoor. Jamshed later refused to be a part of the film and Mansoor maintained that: "Responses like this one convinced people that Jamshed was not certain about his future, and that the Islamist experience was just a phase."