Inn Laqeeron Ko Zameen Pe Hee Rehaney Do! Dilon Pe Mat Utaaro…

November 3, 2010 at 9:15 PMNov (Friends, Media, Musings, Poetry, Slice Of Life)

Sir, do you know I have a dream. A dream to visit Pakistan once,” said my student friend Aishwarya over the phone. I said, it was my dream too. Very excitedly we decided that whenever we go to Pakistan we would go together. I told her about my friends Jamaal, Yahya and Kiran in Pakistan and said they would take us around Pakistan. She too was excited.

Few days after this, I have a friends request on the social network site facebook. The site said this person who has sent me a friends request and I have a common friend. The common friend was Jamal. I accepted the friend request of Khalil Chishtee, not knowing anything of him. Out of curiosity I checked his profile. There was a link to his website (www.khalilchishtee.com). I opened it and my jaw fell!!! What an artist Khalil is. Without any delay I sent the link to Aishwarya. She too was impressed. Later I mailed the link to my friends and pasted the link on buzz. Many friends thanked me for the link saying they were all extremely impressed by the art work of Khalil.

Just a few days after Khalil had impressed all of us, news broke which caught national interest. Indian tennis player Sania Mirza was going to marry Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Mallick. “Another Veer Zara,” declared some, “IPL rejected 11 Pakistani players, Sania rejected all Indians,” said some. They were all light comments, which we all laughed off. But soon Bal Thakrey wrote an editorial in the Shiv Sena mouth piece Saamna which angered some sensible people of this country. He said Sania’s heart was not Indian as it had started beating for a Pakistani.

As I read in the newspaper about B.T.’s comment I was just reminded of Khalil Chishtee and the reaction of many of my friends whose heart Khalil had won. Seeing through the eyes of B.T. we were all not Indians by heart because our heart had made some space for a Pakistani artist. Appreciating the art of Khalil Chishtee is a sign of betrayal for B.T. and many who hold his ideology of hatred.

Is there anything called as Indian heart and Pakistani art? Or is there just heart? Does heart know political borders? Did the millions of hearts of Indian citizen not beat recently listening to the voice of Raheth Fateh Ali Khan singing “Dil toh bachcha hai ji,” which was penned by the Pakistan born Gulzar? So are all these Inidans not Indians? Dint million of Indians not enjoy the bowling of Wasim Akram? Dint millions of Indian hold their breath reading Ahmed Faraaz? Dint many like me have tears in our eyes while watching the Lahore Public School scene in Anand Bhai’s magnum opus War and Peace? So is our loyalty towards a political construct named nation under question?

A childhood friend, known for his anti-Pakistan stand, wrote a note in a mixed language about Sania’s marriage to a Pakistani, referring to her as a “waste tennis player.” Sania becomes a “waste” because her “heart beats for a Pakistani”? In one of his concluding remarks my friend wrote, “lot of Indians have lost their lives due to the stupid deeds of your lover boy.” So Shoaib Mallick becomes a mass murderer!!! Shoaib Mallick is not an individual. So is not Sania for these people to whom Sania’s decision to marry a Pakistani is an indicator of the loyalty of the Muslims of this country being towards Pakistan!!! Isn’t the Muslim identity of Sania which bothers B.T. when he question how she could get visa when Lata Mangeshkar had to struggle? When the Pakistan Tennis Association asks Sania to play for Pakistan isn’t the matter of political border/construct becoming more important? It is the same even in the debates that followed the remarks of PTA.

Dikhayi Dete Hain Door Tak Ab Bhi Saaye Koi
Magar Bulane Se Waqt Laute Na Aaye Koi
Chalo Na Phir Se Bichaye Dariya Bajaye Dholak
Laga Ke Mehndi Surile Tappe Sunaye Koi
Patang Udaye Udaye
Patang Udaye Chatton Pe Chadke Mohalle Wale
Falak To Sanja Hai Uss Mein Paiche Ladaye Koi
Utho Utho Kabaddi Kabaddi Khelenge Sarhadon Par
Jo Aaye Ab The To Laut Kar Phir Na Jaaye Koi

Nazar Mein Rehte Ho Jab Tum Nazar Nahi Aate
Ye Sur Milate Hain Jab Tum Idhar Nahi Aate
Nazar Mein Rehte Ho Jab Tum Nazar Nahi Aate
Ye Sur Bhulate Hain Ye Sur Bhulate Hain
Jab Tum Idhar Nahi Aate
Ye Sur Milate Hain Jab Tum Idhar Nahi Aate.
In lakeeron ko zameen pe hi rahne do!
dilon pe mat utaaro.

– Gulzar

04 April 2010

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