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‘Urdu has a bright future’

October 15, 2014


KHUSHBIR Singh Shaad.—White Star
KHUSHBIR Singh Shaad.—White Star

KARACHI: It was a very short but sweet event as four Indian poets, who are in the city to take part in the 7th International Urdu Conference, entertained the media with their ghazals and nazms at a reception held in their honour at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday evening.

Senior poet Khushbir Singh Shaad said he had always been received with warmth and affection in Karachi. Ever since he first visited the city its memories had remained with him. This is the reason he always looked forward to coming to the metropolis. Alluding to the tensions on the Pakistan-India border, he said situations kept changing.

Shaad said poets were ambassadors of love; it was up to the politicians to end the cross-border friction.

Answering a question about the literary scenes in India and Pakistan, he argued that there was no marked difference between the two in particular and the world in general — the literature being produced all over the globe had the same inclinations. In response to a query about the future of Urdu in India, he said: “Of course, Urdu has a bright future, otherwise why would a Sardar be speaking in Urdu.”

The ghazal that Shaad recited on the occasion began with the following two lines:

Shaam tak phir rang khwabon ka bikhar jaey ga kya

Raigaan hee aaj ka din bhi guzar jaey ga kya

(As evening sets in, will the dream fade away?

Is it going to be the same futile exercise?)

Another couplet from the ghazal:

Aik hijrat jism ne ki aik hijrat rooh ne

Itna gehra zakhm aasaani se bhar jaey ga kya

(The body migrated first, followed by the soul

Such a wound will take time to heal)

Amir Imam’s ghazal had these opening two lines:

Khud ko iss baat per tayyar nahin ker paey

Koi-i-jaanan tujhe bazaar nahin ker paey

(I couldn’t persuade myself

To bring her abode to the public eye)

The first couplet of Ranjit Chauhan’s ghazal:

Uss dil nasheen ko dekh ker hum bus waheen theher gaey

Ye bhi nahin ke zindah hain ye bhi nahin ke mar gaey

(I saw her and halted in my stride

Now I’m neither dead nor alive)

This couplet from Abhishek Shukla’s ghazal was very well received:

Uss se kehna ke dhuan dekhne waala ho ga

Aag pehney huay jaon ga main paani ki taraf

(Tell her that the smoke will be worth watching

When fire-clad I’ll move towards the water)

Poet and journalist Fazil Jamili hosted the programme.

Published in Dawn, October 15th, 2014