The magic of Urdu poetry: Republic Day Mushaira

Nowhere in the world, poetry has such importance in society as in the Indian sub-continent. After all, where would thousands sit till midnight and after to listen to the poets! There is definitely something magical about Urdu poetry.

The Republic Day mushaira brought back memories of the mushairas of the past. After all, poets of the stature of Shaharyar, Waseem Barelvi, Saghar Khayyami and Zubair Rizvi were present on the stage

chiraaghoN ko bujhaana chaahti hai/havaa bhi aab-o-daana chaahti hai
ameer-e-shahar aaNkheN band karle/Gharibi muskuraana chaahti hai

This couplet by young poet Tariq Qamar set the stage and signalled that new generation of poets is ready to take off. After the Lucknow poet, it was Naeem Akhtar’s turn to wow the audience.

mere tumhaarii baat fasaana to hai nahiiN/hai bhii agar to sabko sunaanaa to hai nahiiN
tum do fareb aur maiN samjhuuN hunar use/itnaa bhii saadgii ka zamaanaa to hai nahiiN

The poet from the historic town of Burhanpur recited his ghazals in ‘tarannum’. And when Navaz Deobandi held the mike, the atmosphere was truly electric. His ghazal with the opening couplets:

jalte ghar ko dekhne vaalo phuus ka chhappar aapkaa hai
aag ke piichhe tez havaa hai, aage muqaddar aapka hai
uske qatl pe maiN bhii chup thaa mera number ab aaya
mere qatl pe aap bhii chup hai, aglaa number aapka hai

And the subsequent ghazals that had couplets like…

sach bolne ke shauq meN nuqsaan to huaa
lekin maiN saare shahar meiN zeeshaan to huaa

Poetesses were also impressive. But the mushaira reached its peak when the prince of Urdu poetry on the platforms of Mushaira, Professor Waseem Barelvi began reciting his ghazals and audiences wanted him to continue reciting his ghazals and geets.

bhalaa ghamoN se kahaaN haar jaane vaale the
ham aaNsuoN kii tarah muskuraane vaale the
hamii ne kar diyaa elaan-e-gumrahi varna
hamaare piichhe bohat log aane vaale the

After him the doyen of Urdu poetry and arguably the greatest poet of Ghazal in the country, Shaharyar, recited his ghazal:

dil meN utregi to puuchhegii junuuN kitnaa hai
nok-e-Khanjar hi bataayegii ki khuuN kitnaa hai

The ageing poet despite his ill health read his ghazal that turned the audience emotional. Elderly poet Saghar Khayyami injected humour into the gathering when he read out his ghazal:

Huuraan-e-khuld husn meN behtar haiN kis qadar
maide kii loii jism hai aur sharbati nazar
har chiiz naazukii meN rag-e-gul se Khuubtar
shab bhar Tatolte raho miltii nahiiN kamar

Above are just a few couplets of selected poets. The Mushaira was organised by Urdu Academy to mark the Jashn-e-Jamhuriyat (Republic Day).

The mushaira organised in Delhi, was a resounding success. Just when you start getting worried about the declining standards of poetry, there is an event that strengthens your belief about the survival of a language as sweet as Urdu and the charm of Urdu shaayri.

About Adnan

Adnan has been blogging about Indian Muslims at his blog, Indscribe.
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25 Responses to The magic of Urdu poetry: Republic Day Mushaira

  1. IKRAM PASHA says:

    Dear Friends,
    Urdu is a language which is spoken in every part ofthe world, unfortunately
    Urdu was linked with religous associations and after division of India it was
    Discriminated and labelled as language of muslims but in fact it is the Lingua franca of Indo Pak ,no matter where you go from Kabul to Calcutta ,Urdu is Spoken widely.
    We must try to preserve this beautiful language and promte its education irrespective of the script Devnagri or Arabic script it does not matter and it
    Does not change the position of urdu even if you call it Hindi it is the same language and over and above sectarian or racial ground Urdu should be accepted as the ONLY LANGUAGE OF INDOPAK which is the most Popular.

  2. Shri Dutt Sharma Sahib !

    Aadaab / Greetings ,

    Ummeed hai keh Aap,Family,Friends khairiat sai hain.

    Thanks for your nice comments on my last message in this Important Forum.
    In our literary functions,the poets and writers present their beautiful works in Urdu and also in Other Languages with , translation in Urdu.

    We have dedicated ourselves for Promotion of Urdu and also , for Promotion of Other Languages all over the World.

    I am ready to travel to any country at my expences for the said purpose.

  3. Ikram Pasha Sahib !
    Assalam o Alaikum ,
    Aap ka khat parha.Pasand aaya.
    Today , I have sent one letter reading as under:-
    The poets,writers,journalists,editors,artists,painters,actors,
    photographers,singers,directors,producers,sonsors,businessmen and all the professionals,may participate in our literary,cultural, musical, ghazal/geet singing functions/programs,painting and photographs display works etc.We have dedicated URDU MANZIL for Promotion of URDU language and URDU literature all over the World. In our literary functions , the poets and writers present their beautiful works in Urdu and also in Other Languages with , translation in Urdu.
    We are celebrating the 6th. ANNIVERSARY of URDU MANZIL.
    Thanks to all the poets,writers,lovers of Urdu from all parts of the World who are sending to us beautiful messages of MUBARAKBAD / CONGRATULATIONS in connection with the 6th. Anniversary of the largest Urdu website Urdu Manzil.
    Saghier Ahmed Jafri ,
    http://www.urdumanzil.com/adab_nama/index.html

    http://www.urdumanzil.com/directory/index.html

    http://www.urdumanzil.com/forum/index.html

  4. IKRAM PASHA says:

    Dear Mr.. SAGHIER AHMED JAFRI ASA
    I am pleased to find your commments and acknowledge years of efforts and contribution to promote URDU in the arabian deserts reflects thet you and your wife have devoted your precious time for the greater mission of
    spread of Urdu language.The top most issue is that, conflict and tussel between
    Pakistan and India has not only affected the lives of millions of people it has
    caused a grave damage to muslim civilization ,language and culture of Indo Pak.
    Let us face it India is the BIGGEST MUSLIM country in the WORLD by population and irrespective of wars,conflicts,riots it is the HOMELAND of muslims since more than ONE THOUSAND YEARS and this status will remain so
    No matter the stupidity of politicians and feudal lords and their selfishness.
    Now let us focus on the preservation and promotion of Urdu language which
    Has suffered badly in the last sixty some years of DIVISION of Hindustan which
    Can never be justified no matter what line of arguments you bring it has affected negatively for the people of INDOPAK AND Bangladesh and let us hope Some positive nationalist people of HIMALAYA LAND(INDIA_PAK_BANGLA)
    Get togather to bring positive attitude in promotion of Urdu and Indian Civilisation. OTTAWA CANADA

  5. Bhai Ikram Pasha !
    Ramadan Mubarak to you and to all the friends.
    Dear Brother ,
    Thanks for your nice words/tributes for our decades of services to the Urdu language and Urdu literature and , for years of continous efforts to Promote Urdu all over the World.
    As I wrote earlier,let us form perfect Unity while living in different countries and work unitedly for Promotion of URDU.
    I have mentioned that I am ready to travel to any part of the World at my expences to Promote URDU.
    We must visit each other.We must attend the literary functions,Urdu conferences,Sham e Afsana wa Ghazal Programs and , we must do everything possible to make URDU very much popular among the present and future generations.The businessmen and sponsors interested in programs for promotion of Urdu among young boys and girls in different countries may contact us so that we plan properly Urdu promotion programs.
    You have mentioned about the politicians.I think if we are all very much serious while living and working in several countries then,nobody can stop us from achieving proper results in making URDU language and URDU literature most popular among the people of different age groups,different nationalities.
    Here,I have done many expriments in the past such as aranged not only Urdu Mushairai but also , Urdu – Other languages Mushairai namely “”Urdu – Arabic, Sindhi,Punjabi,Balochi,Pushto,Saraiki,Bengali,Hindi,Maliyali,Tamil,Gujrati,English etc. with , translation in Urdu.
    In some of the Mushaire , I arranged the Urdu functions to be presided over by the Ambassadors of Bangladesh,Philippines,Sri Lanka.
    In our regular literary,cultural functions,the poets,writers present their works in Urdu and sometimes in other languages with translation in Urdu so that everyone may understand the meaning of their poetry,short stories etc.
    Saghier Ahmed Jafri , http://www.urdumanzil.com/adab_nama/index.html
    Tel. # 00971 50 4454036

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