BATKHELA: Speakers at a literary event here on Tuesday said that Pakhtun literati working abroad in different capacities should be appreciated for the contribution they had been making to their mother tongue despite odds.

They said that poets and writers were working hard to earn livelihood for their families back home but they still contributed to Pashto language and literature.

The writers pledged to continue promoting Pakhtun values and soft image of the country.

Literary body honours poets working abroad

The event was organised by Mrsatial Leekwaal (ML), a literary, cultural and social organisation based in Malakand, to appreciate the contribution of Pashto writers working in Gulf States.

A large number of local people, poets and representatives of literary organisations from different districts attended the function. Literary awards were given to guest poets in recognition of their contribution.

Bakht Rawan Umarkhel, a member executive council of ML, said that Pakhtun labourers in the Gulf States were known as hardworking and devoted individuals, who loved their homeland, mother language and people more than anything else.

He said that Pashto literati contributed to Pashto literature despite difficult situations and even helped poor writers back home to bring out their works.

Chairing the function, Prof Abaseen Yousafzai said that poets and writers working in foreign countries worked hard but kept close contact with their own art and culture and brought out books and conducted literary seminars, debates and mushairas abroad that showed their devotion and love for their mother tongue.

He said that Pashto poets and writers were aware of the issues and problems of their own people and gave a due place to those issues in their writings. “We should acknowledge the sincere services of Pashto literati because they play a significant role in promoting the peace narrative of Pakhtuns on the foreign soil,” he added. Senior poet Salim Bangash said on the occasion that he himself had spent a long time in the Gulf States and knew very well what odd conditions the poor people went through but they never forgot their own culture.

He said that credit went to ML for arranging such an event in the honour of Pashto poets and writers working abroad through thick and thin.

Ghulam Haider, a guest poet, said that they were physically far away from their country but remained mentally with their own people and would continue to contribute to Pashto. He said that poets and writers would play role in promoting Pakhtun values and soft image of the country. Prof Iqbal Shakir, Fazal Moomand, Rahim Bangash, Hashmi Niazi and Khayyam Yusufzai also spoke on the occasion.

Published in Dawn, May 1st, 2019

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