New Delhi: Irish rock band U2 paid tribute to women achievers from India and across the world during their maiden performance in Mumbai Sunday.
The band played a visual montage, featuring author Arundhati Roy, journalists Rana Ayyub and Gauri Lankesh and Union minister Smriti Irani, among others.
Activist Shehla Rashid, Delhi Commission for Women Chairperson Swati Maliwal, late Kalpana Chawla, first woman astronaut of Indian descent to go in space, Supreme Court lawyer Karuna Nundy and painter Amrita Sher-Gil also featured in the montage.
In their segment called ‘Herstory’, the band played its track Ultraviolet while showing the pictures of these women on a screen at the backdrop of the stage.
U2’s efforts were appreciated by some of these women, with Ayyub thanking them on Twitter, while also saying that the real ‘sheroes’ are the women of Jamia Millia Islamia University and Aligarh Muslim University, who are “fighting communalism to save the Indian democracy”.
The country has been gripped by protests in the wake of police crackdown on Jamia students, who were agitating against the new citizenship law, Sunday.
Been receiving images all night from the @U2 concert. Thank you Bono. The real heroes are on the streets of Jamia and AMU resisting fascism, fighting communalism to save the Indian democracy. They are the SHEROES India is indebted to. pic.twitter.com/RXEj4ZvJ00
— Rana Ayyub (@RanaAyyub) December 16, 2019
Lawyer Nundy was also “amazed and honoured” by U2’s gesture.
I wish I could've been there, just got in from a work trip. Send better photos if you have them?
— Karuna Nundy (@karunanundy) December 15, 2019
The gesture was also lauded by many on Twitter.
Feeling of pride kicked in hard when Bono featured @RanaAyyub, @karunanundy & the late Gauri Lankesh as SHEROES in the Joshua Tree concert today in Mumbai, I was so overwhelmed didn’t even manage to get a picture!
However this moment will be engraved in my memory forever!!!
— Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) December 15, 2019
— Jojo (@shubHASHISH) December 15, 2019
Such a proud moment! A true hero of India. Thank you U2 for recognising Late Gauri Lankesh and @RanaAyyub as strong women shaping the world #U2TheJoshuaTree2019 #GauriLankesh pic.twitter.com/cZ5JdzK82N
— Ipsita Uppal (@ipsi_tipsy) December 15, 2019
Music maestro A.R. Rahman also performed at the concert.
The band with frontman Bono, guitarist The Edge, drummer Larry Mullen Jr and bassist Adam Clayton wrapped up their Joshua Tree Tour-2019 Sunday at the D.Y. Patil Stadium. The tour was initiated to celebrate 30 years of the band’s 1987 album ‘The Joshua Tree’.
Before coming to India, they performed in New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and the Philippines as part of the tour.
Deepika, Ranveer attended the concert
The concert was a star-studded affair with celebrities, including cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, actors Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Hrithik Roshan, present.
The members of the band said they were honoured to close their tour in India.
“We are grateful that our journey has brought us to India. I’m so glad these companions have come here tonight,” guitarist Adam said.
“We say thank you for your patience. Tonight is the last night for ‘The Joshua Tree’ tour…when women and men, left and right work together for change, that’s how we change the world,” he added.