PESHAWAR: Speakers at an event here on Wednesday said that modern Pashto literature was indebted to lofty thoughts of Allama Iqbal owing to his vision and creative imagination.

They said that Allama Iqbal had cast deep impact on several aspects of modern Pashto literature as he was well aware of the strategic location, history, love of freedom and moral integrity of Pakhtuns.

The event titled ‘Iqbal’s impact on Pashto literature’ was organised by Pakistan Academy of Letters (PAL) at Urdu Science Board Library Hall. Poets and writers gathered to mark 144th birth anniversary of national poet Allama Mohammad Iqbal.

Prof Yar Mohammad Maghmoom Khattak, who chaired the event, said that the sublime thoughts of Iqbal greatly impacted modern Pashto literary trends in many respects.

He said that he had unwavering love for Pakhtun nation and extensively read about their historical role in the region, especially Khushal Khan Khattak’s inspiring poetry through English version.

“It is childish to say that Allama Iqbal had ‘borrowed’ from Khushal Khan Khattak. Iqbal had great love and respect for Pakhtuns for their role in history against imperialism in the region and admired Khushal Khan Khattak for his motivating poetry. Both were poets of ‘message’ addressing youth to safeguard their past glory, get united against the aliens and stand for their moral values,” he said.

Prof Gulzar Jalal Yousafzai said on the occasion that complete works of Allama Iqbal was rendered in Pashto language by eminent Pashto writers and scholars in different times which injected deep impact on almost all literary trends of modern Pashto literature.

“No work of Iqbal stands un-translated or unexplained as his every single piece in Urdu, Persian English has been converted to Pashto and Pakhtun readers at large today enjoy better understanding of Iqbal,” he said.

Prof Gulzar said that noted Pashto literati including Ghani Khan, Ajmal Khattak, Hamza Baba, Sher Mohmmad Mainosh and Samandar Khan were great admirers of Iqbal.

Iqbal Sikandar, senior Sufi writer, in his remarks said that Iqbal always looked to the northwest as he had pinned hopes on the brave dwellers of the mountains. Iqbal wanted Pakhtuns to stand for their past glory safeguarding Islamic values, he added.

Khan Badshah Nusrat, the resident director of PAL, Akram Umarzai and Mohammad Ali Khattak also spoke on the occasion.

Published in Dawn, November 11th, 2021

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