Faiz was being transferred between jails in a tonga (a horse carriage, the common man's transport of the time), and it so happened that the tonga passed a market-square where he'd been fêted not too long ago. Nayyara Noor sings the nazm that he penned upon reaching his cell at the end of the ride. It ought to be an anthem of women in the Islamic world. For that matter, why only women? And why only the Islamic world?
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौलाँ चलो
Let's walk the market-square enshackled today
चश्म-ए-नम जान-ए-शोरीदा काफ़ी नहीं
तोहमत-ए-इश्क-ए-पोशीदा काफ़ी नहीं
Tears and heartbreak never enough
Blamed tending hidden love never enough
दस्त-अफ्शां चलो, मस्त-ओ-रक़्सां चलो
खाक-बर-सर चलो, खूं-ब-दामां चलो
राह तकता है सब शहर-ए-जानां चलो
Go innocence in hand, go dancing in trance
Go dust on head, go blood on garb
All watch that road - Go, to the town of Beloved
हाकिम-ए-शहर भी, मजम-ए-आम भी
तीर-ए-इल्ज़ाम भी, संग-ए-दुश्नाम भी
सुबह-ए-नाशाद भी, रोज़-ए-नाकाम भी
Lord of town too, Crowd of commoner too
Arrow of accusation too, Stone of infamy too
Morning of grief too, Day of failure too
इनका दमसाज़ अपने सिवा कौन है
शहर-ए-जानां मे अब बा-सफा कौन है
दस्त-ए-क़ातिल के शायां रहा कौन है
But thee their friend who else?
Untainted in town of Beloved who else?
Named for assassin's hand who else?
रख्त-ए-दिल बांध लो दिलफिगारों चलो
फिर हमीं क़त्ल हो आयें यारों चलो
आज बाज़ार में पा-ब-जौला चलो
Bind up torn heart, come to the path of love
Join we those to next to die, come my friends
Let's walk the market-square enshackled today.
Here is Faiz himself, reciting the verses.
Friday, August 14, 2015
The Mughal emperor Akbar gave a name to the doab between the Beas and the Ravi - he combined the names of the two rivers to call it the Bari. The tehsil of Dipalpur, a stronghold of the Bhatti Rajput clan, lies in the Bari. It was here that the first Mongol invasion of India was deflected by Balban in 1285 (at the cost of the life of his son.)
The most noticeable feature inside old Dipalpur town is the monastery of Lal Jas Raj Dipal, venerated by locals. According to legend, Lal Jas Raj was the son of Raja Dipa Chand, the founder of Dipalpur. The boy had a lock of hair on the back of his head, while the rest of his head was shaved, a common practice for the Hindu devout. One day, while he was teasing his step-mother, she got annoyed and told him to go bury himself. The curse took hold, Dipal's body started entering the earth. When his step-mother saw what was happening, she quickly ran to his rescue but by then he had almost completely disappeared, with only his choti (lock of hair) above ground. Eventually the choti turned to stone, and the spot where Dipal had sunk became a shrine, testament to the destructive effect of cruel words on those we love.
This area at the Punjab-Rajasthan border has been the holy ground of many peoples' saints. Hazrat Bahawal Haq (Bahawal Sher Qalandar) came from Baghdad and settled outside Dipalpur. Guru Nanak lived here for a while. When Akbar visited along with his son Saleem (the future emperor Jahangir) in 1578, it was to pay homage to Hazrat Farid Ganj Shakar.
Below, Amir Ali Khan, Saleem Ali Khan, Ejaz Ali Khan and party render traditional qawwali inside the old town of Dipalpur - an act of defiance by the Shia, for the Shahi Masjid of Dipalpur flies the banner of Maulana Fazul ur Rehman, the well-known Islamist politician from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, head of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam. The Maulana and his men follow the Deobandi school of thought and look down upon song as un-Islamic.
The qalam is that of Bulleh Shah, the raga is Des.
There is no longer a canonical channel of these lyrics, which have spread across the doab like the braids of the Beas, here is an approximate translation of another version (performed by the Wadali brothers here.)
Charkha mera rang rangeela, ban gai teri yaad vaseela.
My charkha (spinning wheel) of many colors, has become a way of meeting Thy memories.
E mahiya tere vekhan nu, chuk charkha gali de vich panwa.
Beloved, to catch a glimpse of Thee, I place my charkha in the lane outside.
Ve loka paane main kat di, tang teriya yaad de panwa.
People think I spin cotton, but I truly weave the thread of Thy memory.
Charkhe di oo kar de ole, yaad teri da tumba bole.
I tire, set charka aside in shade, the music of Thy memory still rings in my heart.
Ve nimma nimma geet ched ke, tang kath di hullare panwa.
Humming slowly, slowly, I spin gently and dwell on the joy of meeting Thee.
Vasan ni de rahe saure peke, mainu tere pain pulekhe.
Kin let not me rest in ease, but I feel Thou art come close.
Ve hoon mainu das mahiya, tere baaju kidhar main jayiyaan.
Beloved, I ask this: If I don't go to Thee then where do I go?
Ho Eid aayi, mera yaar na aaya, tera ve khair hove ove tamd.
The festive day (Eid) has come, but my Beloved hasn't returned.
Haar singar change nai lagde, ho kisi cheez pe nazar na jamdi.
Jewelry and colors seem dull, nothing around catches my eye.
Sukha waalian needra mangne, yaar mile to main eid manva.
I only pray for sleep, let my Love come then I'll celebrate Eid.