GHALIB KA TASAVVUR-E-NISHAT-O-GHAM

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Mirza Asaadullah Beg Khan popularly known as Mirza Ghalib in his lifespan of 71 years gave the world and connoisseurs’ of poetry works that resonates even today after nearly 150 years of his passing away. In spite of being born into Nobility with a high social status he lived a life of penury and an unhappy marriage. He lived to see the death of his seven children, the fall and the demise of Mughal Empire, the war of 1857 and the rise of the British Empire in Hindustan.

All this made him the person that he was and thus gets reflected in his poetry which offers life lessons that is even till this date can be identified by all sections of society from the nobility to the common man, from rich to poor, from the young to the old and from the believer to the agnostic.

To write anything  that has already not been written about Ghalib is a daunting task and more so over when it is to discuss his imagination of Happiness and Sadness i.e. GHALIB KA TASAVVUR NISHAT-O-GHAM , but such is the magic of his poetry that it offers different insights and meaning to the reader. The valuable life lessons that he offers can be imbibed my each one of us in our daily life. He took life with a pinch of salt, something that need not be taken too seriously like in this couplet:

  • ग़ालिब ऐ खस्ता के बगैर, कौन से काम बंद हैं,

          रोइए जार जार क्या, कीजिये हाय हाय क्यूँ …

  • غالبؔ خستہ کے بغیر کون سے کام بند ہیں

          روئیے زار زار کیا کیجیے ہاے ہاے کیوں

He writes, what is the need for such a hue and cry over him? The world wouldn’t stop if he wasn’t there and for Ghalib himself is in dire condition. What can be implied is that no matter what be the status of someone; however powerful and mighty people would continue to live their lives after they pass away as time and tide waits for no one, what has to happen will happen even in their absence. Ones happiness or sadness is independent of other’s existence the emotions felt will be temporarily but in the long run we all live on.

  • बाज़ीचा-ए-अत्फ़ाल है दुनिया मेरे आगे

         होता है शबो-रोज़ तमाशा मेरे आगे।

  • بازیچۂ اطفال ہے دنیا مرے آگے

        ہوتا ہے شب و روز تماشا مرے آگے

The poet says that world is just a child’s playground in from of him and games are being played daily. He watches the ways of the world and its inhabitants enacting their parts every day, he neither condemns or condones these actions because like the children’s games it isn’t permanent nor it is to be taken seriously thus we should sit back and enjoy the games people play and not to get emotional.

  • काबे किस मुंह से जाओगे , ग़ालिब?

         शर्म तुम को मगर नहीं आती

  • کعبہ کس منہ سے جاوگے غالبؔ

          شرم تم کو مگر نہیں آتی

Ghalib was never a practicing, devout Muslim man. He was an alcoholic and had habits that were an anathema to Islam thus he asks himself, with all this how can he ever make that journey of the faithful to Kabba that is the most sacred place in Islam and doesn’t he have the shame to take the Hajj Pilgrimage. To delve deeper into this couplet it also means that he is aware of shortcomings so to say and have accepted them and that there is nothing hidden from the Almighty. The God knows him and should accept him with all his faults and one shouldn’t moan of feel sad for their actions for God is up their watching all of us.

  • होगा कोई ऐसा भी की ग़ालिब को ना जाने?

         शायर तो वोह अच्छा है, पर बदनाम बोहत है.

  • ہوگا کوئی ایسا بھی کہ غالبؔ کو نہ جانے

          شاعر تو وہ اچھا ہے پہ بدنام بہت ہے

In this couplet Ghalib can be seen asking, is there even a possibility that there may be people who may be unaware of him and further goes on to add that he is good poet albeit with a little questionable reputation. He is aware both i.e. the strength and quality of his literary works and also his infamous and questionable reputation and sometimes this infamy takes precedence over his talent. So if there is happiness over his talent there is also a pang of sadness for his own character faults.

Like he was aware of his shortcomings and habits that were prohibited in his religion he was equally sure of his art i.e. poetry. When someone asks about him, he seems astonished and seems at a loss of words, like in this one:

  • पूछते हैं वोह के ग़ालिब कौन है?

         कोई बतलाओ के हम बतलाये क्या ?

  • پوچھتے ہیں وہ کہ غالبؔ کون ہے

          کوئی بتلاؤ کہ ہم بتلائیں کیا

He is amazed at the ignorance of the person for asking about him, for his works had been read and spread across the region and to answer such a question would be boastful. There is an element of ego, self appraisal and spite. He seems to be asking his followers what to answer to such a question?

When someone reaches exalted status in society it’s a presumption that the masses are supposed to have heard about him and to having to introduce oneself,   is task that gets difficult with rising popularity and on the corollary irrespective of one’s popularity there will be people who are still unaware and indifferent to your fame. In a way he is happy about the status that he achieved thru his poetry which has given him recognition.

  • हैं और भी दुनिया में सुखनवर बोहत अछे,

         केहते हैं ग़ालिब का है अंदाज़ ऐ बयाँ और

  • ہیں اور بھی دنیا میں سخن ور بہت اچھے

         کہتے ہیں کہ غالبؔ کا ہے انداز بیاں اور

Again in this one Ghalib is on self appraisal mode. He says that there are many great poets in the world but still people say his work is a little different. People following the same passion and art form need not be alike, each creates his own niche and his own followers and one should be aware of their strength to find happiness.

Ghalib though born in aristocracy lived a life full of struggle living off the grants of others. He travelled all the way up to Kolkata to claim his pension shared an uneasy relationship with his wife and survived to see the death of his children. He was imprisoned, condemned but still had the gumption to retain his feudal lifestyle. He is aware of his peculiar conditions and hardships.

  • हमको मालूम है जन्नत की हक़ीक़त लेकिन

          दिल के ख़ुश रखने को ‘ग़ालिब’ ये ख़याल अच्छा है

  • ہم کو معلوم ہے جنت کی حقیقت لیکن

          دل کے خوش رکھنے کو غالبؔ یہ خیال اچھا ہے

In this couplet he is aware that only solace he can get now is when he is set free from this life and reaches heaven. He knows the truth or the imagination of this promised heaven but that is the only comfort that is helping him lead this miserable life. In life sometimes only happiness that one can hope to achieve is the one imagined or a promise of a better life. Sometimes the present is so painful that an uncertain future is the only hope.

  • दे वोह जिस क़दर ज़िल्लत, हम हंसी में टालेंगे ,

         बारे आशना निकला उन का पासबान अपना

  • دے وہ جس قدر ذلّت ، ہم ہنسی میں ٹالینگے

          بارے آشنا نکلا ان کا پاسباں اپنا

Again in this one he is aware of being ostracised and being thrown out of his beloved’s place but again he finds solace or rather consoles himself that at least the gatekeeper is his friend. Even in difficult circumstances there is always a ray of hope and it is this silver lining that helps to tide over the difficulties.

In these two couplets the poet talks of hardships that one must get used to and have a steely attitude to face any adversity that they stop to matter anymore. One must face the obstacles in life.

  • इशरत-ए-क़तराहै दरिया में फ़ना हो जाना

         दर्द का हद से गुज़रना है दवा हो जाना

  • عشرت قطرہ ہے دریا میں فنا ہو جانا

          درد کا حد سے گزرنا ہے دوا ہو جانا

It is the destiny of a droplet to merge into the water and loose its identity and it shouldn’t moan about it as that is its destiny. The pain sometimes is so much that you tend to live with it and the absence is what makes life uneasy.

  • रंजसे ख़ूगर हुआ इंसाँ तो मिट जाता है रंज

          मुश्किलें मुझ पर पड़ीं इतनी कि आसाँ हो गईं

  • رنج سے خوگر ہوا انساں تو مٹ جاتا ہے رنج

         مشکلیں مجھ پر پڑیں اتنی کہ آساں ہو گئیں

Similarly in this one the pain once acknowledged gets easy and he faced so many hardships that it seized being a botheration anymore. He says we should face the adversities in our life head on and once we do that the sadness or the pain stops being impairment.

These above couplets fits into the dynamics of any relationship that is bound on the foundation of love be it that of romantic liaisons or the one with the almighty himself and the happiness and sadness is a part of life that we all have to live with.

 

Letter to PM

सोमवार, 28 अगस्त 2017

आदरणीय प्रधानमंत्री महोदय,

सबसे पहले मेवाड़ की इस धरा पर प्रधानमंत्री बनने के पश्चात् पहली बार कल पधारने पर आपका स्वागत है. पूरा प्रशासन, आपकी पार्टी के मंत्री/नेतागण सब इस यात्रा को ऐतिहासिक बनाने में जुटे हुए हैं, साथ ही जनता भी अपने प्रधानमंत्री को सुनने के लिए तत्पर लगती है.

मैं जो की प्रमुख विपक्षी दल- अखिल भारतीय कांग्रेस से ताल्लुक रखता हूँ आपका भाषण ज़रोर सुनूँगा लेकिन सभा स्थल से नहीं बल्कि टीवी पर, क्योंकि आप से उम्मीद है की आप मेरे शहर के लिए बहुत कुछ तोफे और सौगातें अपने पिटारे से निकाल कर जायेंगे और मेरे शहर के अच्छे दिन आ जायेंगे.

आपकी टीम और राजस्थान सरकार ने आपको कुछ सुझाव अवश्य से दिए होंगे, इस क्रम में मैं भी कुछ सुझाव देना चाहूँगा :

  • निर्माण निषेधषेत्र – झीलों के शहर से नाम से जाने वाला मेरा शहर जहाँ सदियों पहले महाराणा उदयसिंह जी ने झील किनारे बसाया और तभी से उदयपुर वासी पिछोला, स्वरूपसागर अवं फतहसागर के आस पास रहने लगे. लेकिन आज यह स्तिथि हो गयी है के आम आदमी अपने पुराने घर को बढती ज़रोरतों के अनुरूप विस्तार नहीं करा सकता, और वहीँ दूसरी तरफ पाँच सितारा होटल अवं रसूखदार को रोकने वाला कोई नहीं. कृपया करके झील के पास रहने वालों को खुद के रहने के लिए निर्माण करने दिया जाये ऐसी छुट दे के जाएँ.
  • उदयपुर – अहमदाबाद ब्रॉडगेज – सालों से धीमी गति से चले रहे काम को अधिक से अधिक बजट अवं दिशा-निर्देश देवें ताकि मेवाड़ का गुजरात के हुते हुए दक्षिण भारत से सीधे जुडाव हो सके.
  • मार्बल पर जीएसटी – हमारा यहाँ मार्बल की बहुत खदाने अवं भण्डार है और लाखों लोगों की इस से रोजी-रोटी चलती है. हाल ही में करी गयी २८% की रेट इस इंडस्ट्री की कमर तोड़ देगी. माना की यहाँ टैक्स कलेक्शन बहुत कम होता है, लेकिन २८% की रेट से स्तिथि और भी चिंताजनक हो सकती है. इस लिए आपसे गुजारिश है की इस के बारे में अवश्य कुछ घोषणा कर के जावें.
  • फिल्म सिटी – मेरे एक मित्र द्वारा उदयपुर में फिल्म सिटी खोलने के लिए मुहीम छेड़ी हुई है क्योंकि उदयपुर न केवल प्राकृतिक बल्कि इंफ्रास्ट्रक्चर की वजह से भी फिल्म इंडस्ट्री के लिए उपयोक्त है. यहाँ सालाना अनेक भारतीय एवं विदेशी फिल्मों की शूटिंग होती है. इस लिए आप से गुज़ारिश है की सुचना एवं प्रसारण मंत्री जी को इसके लिए एक कमेटी गठित करने के किये आप घोषणा कर के जावें.
  • महाराणा प्रताप : आप का कल प्रताप गौरव केंद्र पर जाने का कार्यक्रम प्रस्तावित है, इसी मौके पर चाहूँगा की आप महाराणा प्रताप से जुड़े सभी स्थल जैसे की चावंड, हल्दी घाटी, मोती मगरी को राष्ट्रीय धरोहर घोषित कर के योजना बढ विकास कराएँ.
  • उच्च न्यायालय बेंच – उदयपुर और उससे जुड़ा शेत्र आदिवासी बहुल है और न्यायिक प्रक्रिया हेतु यहाँ की जनता को जोधपुर जाना पड़ता है. दशकों से जनता की यह मांग रही है की यहाँ पर उच्च न्यायलय की बेंच स्थापित करी जाए, जिससे मेवाड़ – वागड़ के लोगों को शीघ्र एवं सस्ता न्याय मिल सके. आप से उम्मीद है की यह सौगात आप हमें दे के जायेंगे.

यह मेरी तरफ से एक छोटा सा मांगपत्र है. कृपया करके इस पर गौर फरमाने का कष्ट करें.

आपका देशवासी,

दीपक सुखाड़िया

Tubelight

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With Sisters, nephews and nieces in town, Tubelight seemed the perfect way to usher in the weekend with a 9 AM First Day First Show. After all it was an Eid release of Salman Bhai and everything else could wait. Despite being sleep deprived after a late night and some grudging member of the entourage we just about managed to reach the Cinema Hall in time.

salman-khan_640x480_71497952767As the story line goes it’s about two brothers living in a small hill town in period starting from Pre-Partition days to the 1962 Indo-China War and their emotional connect. The elder one is good hearted intellectually challenged and the younger one is the protector and provider. The 1962 War changes it all as the younger one joins the army and thus begins the quest of the elder on to reunite with his brother.

These two are obviously Bhai and Sohal Bhai. With a brilliant supporting cast of Om Puri, Matin Rey Tangu, Zhu Zhu, Zeeshan Ayyub, Om Puri and the Superb Shah Rukh Khan. The young kid and his mother is the screen stealer and surprisingly Sohail Bhai for once is watchable and impressive.

Tubelight-Kid-Matin-Rey-Tan

Weaving human stories with arch enemies of India i.e. Pakistan and with this movies China seems to be forte of Kabir Khan: From Ek Tha Tiger, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, Phantom and now TubeLight. He raises the patriotic feelings and message of Bhaichara perfectly thrown in. Someone please make him an ambassador of ‘Aman ki Asha’ provided he isn’t already. He manages to raise some pertinent questions on being an Indian, slogan shouting of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ and likes.

The sets feel lived in and surroundings beautiful and the characters of small town real and noosy. Though the war sequences to me seemed little amateurish and too simple. There is too much of ‘Yakeen’ happening for my comfort and too mush symbolic Gandhism thrown in which feels contrived.

Then there is Bhai: Salman Bhai. What’s with actors trying to get out of their comfort zones to prove a point with different roles and failing, case in point being Bhai with this movie? Bhai is beyond reviews/critics but that doesn’t give him a liberty to ham it up playing this intellectually challenged character. Somehow his acting reminded me of Hritik Roshan from Koi Mil Gaya, just a tad better. I don’t know if that’s the way the actors are supposed to play it but it just doesn’t work for me.

The movie works well minus the hammy Bhai but what’s a Bhai movie without Bhai swag and charisma. Bhai Fans the reviews don’t matter and for the rest this TubeLight shines but not too brightly !!

Uniform Civil Code

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BJP led NDA Government has asked the Law Commission to examine the issues relating to the implementation of Uniform Civil Code. This is the first time a Government has asked the commission which has a advisory role on such a politically controversial legal reform.

Our Constitution under the Directive Principle of State Policy Article 44 states:
“The State shall endeavour to secure for the citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India.”

Text quoted below is what Baba Saheb Ambedkar had to say when the issue of adding proviso / amending the above article which was then Article 35 was being discussed by the Constituent Assembly on the 23rd November 1948:
22“In dealing with this matter, I do not propose to touch on the merits of the question as to whether this country should have a Civil Code or it should not. That is a matter which I think has been dealt with sufficiently for the occasion by my friend, Mr. Munshi, as well as by Shri Alladi Krishnaswami Ayyar. When the amendments to certain fundamental rights are moved, it would be possible for me to make a full statement on this subject, and I therefore do not propose to deal with it here.
My friend, Mr. Hussain Imam, in rising to support the amendments, asked whether it was possible and desirable to have a uniform Code of laws for a country so vast as this. Now I must confess that I was very much surprised at that statement, for the simple reason that we have in this country a uniform code of laws covering almost every aspect of human relationship. We have a uniform and complete Criminal Code operating throughout the country, which is contained in the Penal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code. We have the Law of Transfer of Property, which deals with property relations and which is operative throughout the country. Then there are the Negotiable Instruments Acts: and I can cite innumerable enactments which would prove that this country has practically a Civil Code, uniform in its content and applicable to the whole of the country. The only province the Civil Law has not been able to invade so far is Marriage and Succession. It is this little corner which we have not been able to invade so far and it is the intention of those who desire to have article 35 as part of the Constitution to bring about that change. Therefore, the argument whether we should attempt such a thing seems to me somewhat misplaced for the simple reason that we have, as a matter of fact, covered the whole lot of the field which is covered by a Uniform Civil Code in this country. It is therefore too late now to ask the question whether we could do it. As I say, we have already done it.
Coming to the amendments, there are only two observations which I would like to make. My first observation would be to state that members who put forth these amendments say that the Muslim personal law, so far as this country was concerned, was immutable and uniform through the whole of India. Now I wish to challenge that statement. I think most of my friends who have spoken on this amendment have quite forgotten that up to 1935 the North-West Frontier Province was not subject to the Shariat Law. It followed the Hindu Law in the matter of succession and in other matters, so much so that it was in 1939 that the Central Legislature had to come into the field and to abrogate the application of the Hindu Law to the Muslims of the North-West Frontier Province and to apply the Shariat Law to them. That is not all.
My honourable friends have forgotten, that, apart from the North-West Frontier Province, up till 1937 in the rest of India, in various parts, such as the United Provinces, the Central Provinces and Bombay, the Muslims to a large extent were governed by the Hindu Law in the matter of succession. In order to bring them on the plane of uniformity with regard to the other Muslims who observed the Shariat Law, the Legislature had to intervene in 1937 and to pass an enactment applying the Shariat Law to the rest of India.
I am also informed by my friend, Shri Karunakara Menon, that in North Malabar the Marumakkathayam Law applied to all-not only to Hindus but also to Muslims. It is to be remembered that the Marumakkathayam Law is a Matriarchal form of law and not a Patriarchal form of law.
The Mussulmans, therefore, in North Malabar were up to now following the Marumakkathyam law. It is therefore no use making a categorical statement that the Muslim law has been an immutable law which they have been following from ancient times. That law as such was not applicable in certain parts and it has been made applicable ten years ago. Therefore if it was found necessary that for the purpose of evolving single civil code applicable to all citizens irrespective of their religion, certain portions of the Hindus, law, not because they were contained in Hindu law but because they were found to be the most suitable, were incorporated into the new civil code projected by article 35, I am quite certain that it would not be open to any Muslim to say that the framers of the Civil code had done great violence to the sentiments of the Muslim community.
My second observation is to give them an assurance. I quite realise their feelings in the matter, but I think they have read rather too much into article 35, which merely proposes that the State shall endeavour to secure a civil code for the citizens of the country. It does not say that after the Code is framed the State shall enforce it upon all citizens merely because they are citizens. It is perfectly possible that the future parliament may make a provision by way of making a beginning that the Code shall apply only to those who make a declaration that they are prepared to be bound by it, so that in the initial stage the application of the Code may be purely voluntary. Parliament may feel the ground by some such method. This is not a novel method. It was adopted in the Shariat Act of 1937 when it was applied to territories other than the North-West Frontier Province. The law said that here is a Shariat law which should be applied to Mussulmans who wanted that he should be bound by the Shariat Act should go to an officer of the state, make a declaration that he is willing to be bound by it, and after he has made that declaration the law will bind him and his successors. It would be perfectly possible for parliament to introduce a provision of that sort; so that the fear which my friends have expressed here will be altogether nullified. I therefore submit that there is no substance in these amendments and I oppose them.”

Constituent Assembly member Mr. Naziruddin Ahmad had this to say about Uniform Civil Code: “The goal should be towards a uniform civil code but it should be gradual and with the consent of the people concerned.”

Another member Mr.Hussain Imam said : “I feel that it is all right and a very desirable thing to have a uniform law, but at a very distant date. For that, we should first await the coming of that event when the whole of India has got educated, when mass illiteracy has been removed, when people have advanced, when their economic conditions are better, when each man is able to stand on his own legs and fight his own battles. Then, you can have uniform laws. Can you have, today, uniform laws as far as a child and a young man are concerned?”

The question that Mr. Hussain asked then more than 67 years ago is still relevant today and need to answered before the current political dispensation embarks on a journey to cater to their ideology !!

Letter to Anna Hazare

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Dear Anna,

Hope this letter finds you in the best of health and spirit!!

I have been wanting to write to you since a long time now, but the recent appointment of your colleague and fellow traveler to the post of Lt. Governor of Puducherry made me finally take this call.

I first heard about you while in college in Mumbai as we had a chapter dedicated to the great work you had been doing in Ralegoan Siddhi, then a sleepy hamlet in the interiors of Maharashtra and the next time I heard when you ignited and lit up the nation with your call for a Corruption Free India and Jan Lok Pal Bill.

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Candle Light March in Udaipur. (Me in Striped Blue Shirt)

Like the millions across the nation, I too was sold out on this idea and leaving aside my political ideology had marched in your support in Udaipur. Patriotic Emotions welled up in my heart every time you went on a Hunger Strike and reached the crescendo after the famous run to the Rajghat after being released from the Tihar Prison (http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/anna-runs-surrounded-by-cops-at-rajghat-464895 ) .But how short lived was this dream run??? Like the saying goes “Road to hell is paved with good intentions” this one too didn’t live up to the expectations.

downloadOne by one the nation saw your core team of India Against Corruption go their separate ways and milk each drop of fame and mileage they got from this Andolan.
• Arvind Kejriwal became the Delhi CM and is now nursing National Ambitions.
• Kumar Vishwas jacked up his rates for कवि सम्मलेन as the agitation gave him national recognition.
• Kiran Bedi is now the Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry.
• Shazia Ilmi, Ashish Khetan, Ashutosh have became नेता from पत्रकार.
• Anupam Kher has now become the most loyal voice of His Master besides being a Padma Awardees.

The only people that have lost out is you and the calm Composed Yogendra Yadav. You are a man of small needs so I am presuming going back to Ralegoan Siddhi wasn’t difficult but for Yogendra Yadav he has lost his moral voice of being a psephologist and have to bide his time playing a supporting role to the acerbic Prashant Bhushan.

Anna, where is the promised utopian Jan Lokpal Bill?? Arvind Kejriwal isn’t talking about it nor is the current political dispensation at the Center and now is it factor for the Aam Aadmi. For the Indian Voters have voted in Lalu Prasad Yadav’s RJD with the maximum seats in Bihar Assembly, Jayalitha whose conviction has been stayed by the courts creates history and gets a second consecutive term as the Tamil Nadu CM.

Corruption is a malice that the country suffers from but as we have seen in the past it is not the main issue. There are far greater issues that demand immediate solutions then the one you remained hungry for.

Please don’t stay away from the limelight, because all governments need your moral compass for course correction.

Regards,
Deepak Sukhadia

Taj Mahal

Taj_2816675gThe Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton, who were on a week-long tour of India and Bhutan, visited the Taj Mahal on the final leg of their tour on the 16th April 2016.

The royal couple posed in front of the monument and this visit to Agra generated much excitement and it was cleared of tourists so as to facilitate their visit .

We have been told and retold that Taj Mahal is the ultimate declaration and symbol of eternal love but what about the Love of the ordinary mortals who don’t have the wherewithal to spend lavishly in memory of their loved ones ??

This reminded me of a poem i recently heard / read by Sahir Ludhianwi (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sahir_Ludhianvi) on Taj Mahal , where he raises concerns and questions Taj Mahal as the symbol of love in this iconic poem :

ताज तेरे लिए एक मज़हर ऐ उल्फत ही सही,

तुझ को इस वादी ऐ रंगीन से अकीदत ही सही,

मेरी मेह्बोब कहीं और मिला कर मुझ से ..

The Taj, mayhap, to you may seem, a mark of love supreme

You may hold this beauteous vale in great esteem;

Yet, my love, meet me hence at some other place!

बज़्म ऐ शाही में गरीबों का गुज़र क्या मानी,

सब्त जिस राह में हों सतवत ऐ शाही के निशाँ,

उस पे उल्फत भरी रुहूँ का सफ़र क्या मानी

How odd for the poor folk to frequent royal resorts;

‘Tis strange that the amorous souls should tread the regal paths

Trodden once by mighty kings and their proud consorts.

मेरी महबूब पास-ऐ-पर्दा-ऐ-तश-हीर-ऐ-वफ़ा,

तू ने सतवत के निशानों को तो देखा होता,

मुर्दा शाहों के मक़ाबिर से बहलने वाली,

अपने तारीक़ मकानों को तो देखा होता

Behind the facade of love my dear, you had better seen,

The marks of imperial might that herein lie screen’d

You who take delight in tombs of kings deceased,

Should have seen the hutments dark where you and I did wean.

अनगिनत लोगों ने दुनिया में मोहब्बत की है,

कौन कहता है की सादिक़ न थे जज़्बे उन के,

लेकिन उन के लिए तश्हीर का सामान नहीं

क्यों की वो लोग भी अपनी तरह मुफलिस थे,

Countless men in this world must have loved and gone,

Who would say their loves weren’t truthful or strong?

But in the name of their loves, no memorial is raised

For they too, like you and me, belonged to the common throng.

ये इमारत-ओ-मक़ाबिर, ये फ़सीलें, ये हिसार,

मुतलक़-उल-हुक्म शहंशाहों की अजमत के सुतून

दामन-ऐ-दहर पे उस रंग की गुलकारी है ,

जिस में शामिल है तेरे और मेरे अजदाद का खून,

These structures and sepulchres, these ramparts and forts,

These relics of the mighty dead are, in fact, no more

Than the cancerous tumours on the face of earth,

Fattened on our ancestor’s very blood and bones.

मेरी महबूब!! उन्हें भी तो मोहब्बत होगी

जिनका सन्नाई ने बख्शी है इसे शक्ल-ऐ-जामील

उन के प्यारों में मक़ाबिर रहे बेनाम-ओ-नामूद

आज तक उन पे जलाई न किसी ने कंदील

They too must have loved, my love, whose hands had made,

This marble monument, nicely chiselled and shaped

But their dear ones lived and died, unhonoured, unknown,

None burnt even a taper on their lowly graves.

ये चमनज़ार, ये जमुना का किनारा, ये महल

ये मुनक्क़श दर-ओ-दीवार, ये मेहराब , ये ताक़

एक शहंशाह ने दौलत का सहारा ले कर,

हम गरीबों की मोहब्बत का उड़ाया है मज़ाक

मेरी महबूब कहीं और मिला कर मुझ से ….

This bank of Jamuna, this edifice, these groves and lawns,

These carved walls and doors, arches and alcoves,

An emperor on the strength of wealth,

Has played with us a cruel joke.

Meet me hence, my love, at some other place.

https://rekhta.org/nazms/taaj-mahal-sahir-ludhianvi-nazms This is the link to the above quoted poem and do listen to the excellent rendition of this nazm by Hamida Banu ji whose Audio CD is the reason I first came across this beautiful Gem.

 

Jai Bhim

download 5Today is the day India celebrates the 125th Birth Anniversary of The Great B R Ambedkar – Babasaheb !! The legacy that he left behind still continues to guide and steer the political discussion across the spectrum. I wouldn’t delve too much in his achievements as Wikipedia will provide enough of that https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B._R._Ambedkar . This is about my idea and notions on Him as felt and experienced over the past decades.

Coming from a privileged background and with little awareness about the depravity download (4faced by the millions of fellow citizens my world view and especially that on Babasaheb was eschewed and flawed and having studied in an English Medium Premium Boarding school of India my interactions certainly didn’t help my case. The first time I heard or at least became aware of his legacy was during the Mandal Agitation when schools were closed, students immolated themselves protesting against the implementation of the recommendations of the commission. The sympathies lay with the protesting students and against the reservations.

Luckily for me since, childhood our family didn’t make too much of an issue of the caste or creed that we belonged to, we were proud practising Hindus and that is it. The further breakups of the caste in the four Varnas were bought to the fore only when we studied history in school. download 1Moreover the reading of Arun Shourie’s book Worshipping False Gods in later years further reinforced my opinion on Babasaheb. It was only during my college years in Mumbai in the Nineties that I saw the way people revered him and placed him on the same pedestal as God. Later interactions and reading did help in clearing most of my false notions and face up to reality about the magnitude and life changing body of work for underprivileged sections of the society. The respect grew multifolds when I read some of his arguments made in the Constituent Assembly where our Constitution was being deliberated upon.

I wouldn’t go into the merits of the reservations that he strongly espoused because that has been covered in my earlier blog I support The Reservations !!. I only wish to see that the political class especially the one using his legacy and imagery do not deviate from his ideals and his name is not used to fill their own coffers.

The Dalits whose rights he championed constitute nearly one fifth of the Indian Population as per the 2011 Census against whom in spite of the safeguards crime is committed every 8 minutes with an abysmal conviction rate of mere 5.3 %. In spite of the reservations and educational facilities the dropout rate in higher classes is a whopping 50.1 %. The Government has done quite a bit for them but all this isn’t helpful unless we remove the biases from within. We have miles to go before we achieve what we set out for.

428235_10151189732356717_994702135_nAn incident that i have personally faced in not so distant past is about my Friend and political activist Late Dinesh Tarwadi who belonged to the Valmiki Community. He went on to receive a Political posting with a rank of a minister in Govt of Rajasthan. We used to go on political tours together and attend meetings and eat together. I was told by some of my political well wishers not to roam around with him due to his castes, well luckily for me I was beyond this kind of nonsense and paid no heed to them. The friendship was however sadly cut short by his untimely death.

The real celebrations of Babasaheb will only be possible when the biases are removed from both the sides. As he said “Caste has killed Public Spirit. Caste has destroyed the sense of Public Charity. Caste has made Public Opinion impossible. Virtue has become Caste-Ridden and Morality has become Caste Bound.”

Congratulations Anant

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Dearest Anant,

On the onset would like to congratulate you on the amazing weight loss and what a loss it has been: a total of 108 kgs in eighteen months that comes to a whooping 6 kgs per month.

12963921_10153452939486717_3228393883383403705_nThis week hasn’t been too good for me, first a hospital sends me a sms asking me if I am obese (luckily they didn’t use the word fat, guess it is now politically incorrect) and asking me to visit their weight loss clinic , phew !! I had consoled myself that it wasn’t meant for me personally but a part of some bulk sms marketing tool. मन को समझाया ही था और आप श्री के वज़न कम करने के चर्चे सब newspapers / social media / news portals ने हम जैसे लोगों पे ऐसे bombard करे की लोगों को अब जवाब देते नहीं बनता है. एक शुभ चिन्तक ने personal message करके news forward की, की शायद मैं आप से inspire हो जाओं.

downloadवैसे BTW कई जगह तो आप के इस शानदार weigh loss ने Panama Leaks जैसे तुच्छ सी news को भी पछाड़ दिया, वैसे क्या फरक पड़ता है उन leaks का, पैसे आये न आये लोगों को यह जानना ज़रोरी है की आप कितने चुस्त और दुरुस्त हो गए हैं.

So we were informed about your fantastic fitness and diet regime that included a 21-km walk, followed by yoga, weight training, functional training and high-intensity cardio exercises and a zero-sugar, low-carb diet along with adequate fat and protein. Hats off to your determination and drive to achieve the impossible, but I wonder is it even remotely and humanely possible to stick to this kind of high intensive regime for ordinary mortals like us??

I have always been a little larger (ALL) ever since I remember and am used to the jokes about my weight and size, it is now an integral part of who I am, which I know isn’t healthy and a sure sign of future sickness and disease, over the years have tried all possible means of loosing weight , you name it and I have tried it except going under the knife , an idea that I am willing to explore but not as of now.

And with this I want to ask you something on behalf of the ALL Fraternity, with hand on your heart; which is now closer to your hand after the loss, did you or did you not go under the knife?? You know what I mean, for I have yet to come across anyone who has achieved such a staggering reduction in size ins such short span by just following what you did. Some of my friends and acquaintances have been very open about their surgeries while others bluff is easily identifiable.

download (1)Dear, I am not insinuating anything, just asking so I know for sure what you did is possible, so that I can then fix my appointment with the Next Door Dietician Bhabhi who is busy prescribing factory diet regimes to one and sundry and join the पड़ोस का अखाड़ा / Gym to covert my cellulite into डोले -शोले and make your before-after pictures as my whatsapp DP !!

Yours truly,

Deepak Sukhadia
A Proud Fat Man

PS : बात में अगर वज़न हो तो कृपया शेयर ज़रोर कीजियेगा.

Festival of Colors : Holi

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Like the zillion Indian Facebook users across the world, I too posted my pictures of playing Holi with friends and family. Hardly recognizable with the color all over our faces in a tub that was too small to fit 6 adults and 5 kids, we all managed nevertheless.

I did manage to get some sizeable likes and counting on the post which made me glad, after all what use is a post not liked by your FB friends!! I was happy till a dear friend reprimanded me of the futility of putting ones pictures that aren’t graceful and complained about his timeline being filled with such pictures and how he despised posting these horrendous pictures.

Holi is the only Hindu Festival when one is not supposed to dress up to be in a festive mood, old faded clothes add much more happiness and fun at least for me and I love celebrating this festival. We have always been a family that loved celebrating Holi, with friends and family visiting each other to celebrate and one acquaintance always ensured a steady supply of Bhang ki Mithai and Pakodi for years together. Those were the days when the young ones would hop on to our open Willis Jeep and go on singing Hindi songs and visiting relatives and friends. The color refused to go for a week and body itched with the incessant and failed attempt to remove colors.

The way this festival has been now projected I wouldn’t be surprised that the future generations stop celebrating it all together. People stay in and refuse to get out or they leave town, going to any extent to avoid playing with colors. I sometimes wonder whether they are truly allergic to the colors or this is just plain disdain for Holi.

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My Grandfather Late Mohan Lal ji Sukhadia then the Governor of Tamil Nadu celebrating Holi at the Chennai Raj Bhawan in the 1970’s

An incident that is part of our family lore is about that one year my Grandfather who was then the Governor of Tamil Nadu had celebrated Holi in the Raj Bhawan there with the Rajasthani’s settled in Chennai. The entire staff was flabbergasted to see the Governor applying colors and enjoying the festival with one and sundry. For most of the local Tamil population this was something they had never seen or experienced.

Having lived in hostels for more than decade, I have played Holi with eggs, color, shoe polish !! Its only now I have been trying to convince my friends to shift to Gulal from Pucca Colors and have mostly failed at this endeavor except this year. And no Holi is ever complete without the mandatory dipping in a pool or tub to bring an end to the festivities.
Sorry but No Tilak Holi for me at least for the time being, like a recent line from a commercial says :“होली है भाई, चुटकी भर से क्या होगा ??”

I know it is not environmentally friendly and we end up wasting a precious resource i.e. water but again in our everyday life how conscious are we that all the activism and awareness get fixed onto the celebration of Holi. I know i am wrong and there are millions thirsty souls across the globe but ……..

Go out and get urself dirty and make our children enjoy this festival, be208907_10151305455566717_1431969527_ncause it gives an opportunity to add color to our otherwise mundane lives, like a beautiful sms doing the rounds says about the Holi :
लो ख़तम हुई रंग ऐ गुलाल की शोखियाँ
चलो यारों फिर बेरंग दुनिया में लौट चलें …

Freedom of Speech and Expression

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There is raging debate going on across the country over one’s Right to Freedom of Speech and Expression especially in the context of the incidents at Jawaharlal Nehru University, wherein its Students Union President has been charged with Sedition over some alleged inflammatory speech which has now been proven to be doctored

Let us first understand what our Constitution has to say on the above :

Article 19(1)(a): All citizens shall have the rights to freedom of Speech and Expression

This right has been restricted by Article 19(2) :

  • Nothing in sub clause (a) of clause ( 1 ) shall affect the operation of any existing law, or prevent the State from making any law, in so far as such law imposes reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence

Like all provisos of laws goes each one is subjected to different interpretations and it is up to the courts to decide what is the right interpretation. Over the years the Supreme Court pronounced extensively on the same in some landmark cases wherein the they have vehemently protected our Rights as the citizen of this great free thinking democratic country.

In the case of Supdt Central Prison Vs. Ram Manohar Lohia the courts ruled that the limitation imposed in the interests of public order to be a reasonable restriction, should be one which has a proximate connection or nexus with public order, but not one far- fetched, hypothetical or problematical or too remote in the chain of its relation with the public order.

In another case of Kedar Nath Singh vs State Of Bihar, the court ruled that a citizen has a right to say or write whatever he likes about the Government, or its measures, by way of criticism or comment, so long as he does not incite people to violence against the Government established by law or with the intention of creating public disorder. It is clear that criticism of public measures or comment on Government action, however strongly worded, would be within reasonable limits and would be consistent with the fundamental right of freedom of speech and expression.

The foundations on which our nation is built since 1947 is too strong to be shaken up by some stray incidents happening inside a campus. And moreover nationalism and patriotism can’t be dictated and put under one political ideology or hue.

Right Wing Groups Glorify Nathuram Godse On His Death Anniversary
Members of right wing groups organize Shaurya Diwas to commemorate the 66th death anniversary of Nathuram Godse at Panvel on November 15, 2015 in Navi Mumbai India.

We never see the same level of overzealous hyper ventilating patriotism when the people from the state of Bihar are thrashed in Maharashtra, or when the idea of India belonging to one particular community is raised or when Nathu Ram Godse the murderer of Mahatma Gandhi is celebrated by the Right wing organisations!!

In May 2014 the NDA government was sworn in with an overwhelming majority and man have they delivered!!!! They were setting the agenda during the elections on some consequential issues and now the agenda being set is on Love Jihad, Beef Ban. They seemed so busy in scuttling the voices of students on campuses from Rohith to Kanhaiya and slapping sedition charges that they have no time to arrest the downward spiral of economy.

To quote the great Urdu Poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz :

जिस्म पर क़ैद है ज़ज्बात पे जंजीरें हैं
फ़िक्र महबूस है गुफ्तार पे ताजीरें हैं

लेकिन अब ज़ुल्म की मियाद के दिन थोड़े हैं
इक ज़रा सब्र कि फ़रियाद के दिन थोड़े हैं

चंद रोज़ और मेरी जान फक़त चंद ही रोज़ …

(महबूस = captive, गुफ्तार = speech, ताजीरें = punishments)