Dhahan Youth Prize in Creative Writing in BC High Schools – Launching Surrey Feb 28/2017

Dhahan Logo in all scripts

Uddari welcomes the launch of Dhahan Youth Prize, a province-wide creative writing contest where EIGHT British Columbia students of Punjabi will be awarded a CDN$500 prize, four in each of intermediate and advanced language skill levels.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017
10:45 am (SHARP)
LA Matheson Secondary School
9484 122 Street, Surrey

The contest is open to all secondary school students of British Columbia who are studying Punjabi in grade 11 or 12.
The writing submitted must be in both Punjabi and English.
Submissions will be accepted from March 1st to May 31st, 2017.
The awards will be given out at the Dhahan Prize Awards ceremony at the end of October 2017.

Coast Capital Savings is the presenting sponsor for the new Youth Prize, and L.A. Matheson Secondary is a supporting partner with Founder Barj S. Dhahan.

Punjabi is the 2nd most spoken language in British Columbia. This youth initiative will be recognized along with the Dhahan Prize for Punjabi Literature.

For more information about Dhahan Prize visit
dhahanprize.com
facebook.com/DhahanPrize

Contact: Carolyn Treger
Dhahan Prize
604-831-6831
admin@dhahanprize.com
..

Confucius in Punjabi

classic_chinese_painting

Translated and compiled by Randeep Singh

These are translations of Yasir Javid’s Urdu translations into Punjabi, with Hindi and Urdu alternatives added only where necessary.

Thank you to Sadhu Binning  and Ajay Bhardwaj for their help.

Kee eh khushi dee gall nahin ki tu jo vee sikhya os da amal kitta jaave?

Kee eh vee khushi dee gall nahin ki door toN tain nooN dost miln aave?

Je lok main noon na pahnchaan te main noon nahin takleef hundi
kee main ek vadhiya insaan nahin haan?

學而時習之、不亦說乎。有朋自遠方來、不亦樂乎。人不知而不慍、不亦君子乎。

Isn’t it a joy to apply what one has learnt?
Isn’t it also a joy to have friends come from afar?
If people don’t  recognize me, and this bothers me not, am I not a sage?

(1:1)

Main har roz tin nuktiaN bare khud nu parakdha haaN
Kee main dujiyaan dee madad le khud nu smarpit/waqf kita hai?
Kee main apne dostaan de naal gallaan de vich bharosa da qaabil si?
Kee mere amal mere qaul de mutaabiq nahin san?

吾日三省吾身、爲人謀而不忠乎。與朋友交而不信乎。傳不習乎。

Everyday, I examine myself on three points
Have I been devoted in helping others?
Have I been worthy of trust in what I say to my friends?
Have I not acted according to my word?

(1:4)

Oh gall karan to pehla amal karda te baad de vich amaal te mutaabiq gal karda
子貢問君子。子曰。先行其言、而后從之。
The noble person acts before speaking and then speaks according to his action

(2:13)

Sikhna sochna to beghair bekaar hain te sochna sikhna to beghair khatarnaak hai
攻乎異端、斯害也己。
Learning without thinking is useless. Thinking without learning is dangerous.

(2:15)

‘KarmaaN Maari – The Ill Fated’ a poem by Shehnaz Parveen Sahar

An Urdu poem in English and Punjabi.
Punjabi shahmukhi
Punjabi roman
Urdu
English

photofromshenaz

.


Punjabi Shahmukhi >

.
کرماں ماری

ہنے ہنے
میں فیر
اوس محفل
توں
نس آئی آں
جتھے رفو،زاہدہ ،عرشی، ٹیبی
میرے
آل دوالے
بیٹھیاں میرے لہنگےاتّے
چمپا گوٹا لا رہئیاں نے
میرے ہتھیں
شگن دی مہندی
متھےاتے
جھومر ٹکہ
لا رہئیاں نے
بابل والے گیت وداعی
گا رہئیاں نے
ویکھو سب دیاں ونگاں ویکھو
چھنک کھنک کے
ایہہ وی سنگت پا رہئیاں نے

ایہہ سب کُج پر کاہدے لئی اے

جھلییو
تسی تے کج وی جاندیاں نئیں
اگے اگ دا
کرماں ساڑدا
لال سمندر
ٹھاٹھاں ماردا آ ڈُھکیا اے
انج کرنا تسی
مینوں اپنے نال ای لے کے ٹرجانا

ایس توں پہل۔۔۔
گیت تہاڈےاگ وچ سڑ کے
پُھٹ پُھٹ روون
چیکاں مارن

اڑیو
میری گل تاں سن لئو
کتھے چلیاں
مڑ کےویکھو
واپس آئو
سکھیونی
مینوں گل نال لائو
سن لئو اڑیو
خورے میریاں آوازاں
نوں کیوں نئیں سُن دیاں
اپنےسارے گیت نمانے لیندیاں جائو
ویکھوکسراں
میرے گل وچ بانہواں پا کے
چیکاں مار کے
رو پئے سارے

خورے مینوں کلیاں چھڈ کے
کیوں تسی ساریاں
ٹر گیئاں جے
پچھے اپنیاں آوازاں وی چھڈ گئیاں جے
اے آوازاں
میری جان دے پچھے پے گیئاں نے

گوٹے کرناں بھریاں چُنیاں دے نال
اتھرواں والیاں۔۔۔ اکھیاں نوں
کج ہوروی کنڈے مل جاندے نے
ہونٹ سدا لئی سل جاندے نے

اُتّوں تہا ڈ یاں کن من کن من آوازاں نے
ساہ لینا وی اوکھا کیتا

سنونی اڑیو
اک گل دسّو
آخر تسی اے ساریاں رل کے
اچی اچی
ہسدیاں کیوں جے؟؟؟

شہناز پروین سحر
..

.

< Punjabi, roman

KarmaaN Maari
By
Shehnaz Parveen Sahar

Hunnay hunnay
maiN fer
oss mehfil
tooN
nuss aye aaN
jithay raffo, zahida, arshi, tabby
mere
aalay dwaalay
baithiyaan mere lehngay uttay
champa gotta la rahyaaN naiN
mere hatheeN
shagn dee mehndi
mathay uttay
jhoomar tikka
la rahyaaN naiN
babul walay geet vidaee
ga rahyaN naiN
vekho sab diyaN wangaN vekho
chhanak khhanak ke
eh ve sangat pa rahyaaN naiN

eh sab kujh per kahday laye ae
jhalliyo
tusseiN te kujh ve jandiyaN nahin
aggay agg da
karmaN saarrda
laal smundar
tthatthaN marda aa Dhukeya ae
inj karna tusseiN
mainuN apnay naal ee lae ke tur jana

ais toon pehlaN
geet tuhaday agg vich surr ke
phutt phutt rowan
cheekaN maran

Arreyo
meri gal te sunn lao
kithay chaliyaN
murr ke vekho
wapas aao
sakhiyo nee
mainun gal nal lao
sunn lao arreyo
khawray meriyan awazaN
nooN kiyuN nahin sunndiyaN
apnay saaray geet nomaanay laindiyaN jao
vekho kissraN
mere gal vich baNhwaN paa ke
cheekaN maar ke
ro pai saaray

Khawray mainuN kaleyaN chudd ke
kiyuN tueeiN saariyaN
Tur gayaN je
pichhay apniyaN awazaN ve chudd gayaN je
eh awazaN
meri jan de pichay paindiaN naiN

gottay kirnaN bhariyaN chuniyaN naal
athro valiyaN…. akhiyaN nooN
kujh hor ve kanday mil janday naiN
honT sada laye sil janday naiN

Sunno nee Arriyo
ek gul dusso
akhar tusseiN eh sariyaN rul ke
uchi uchi
hudiyaN kiyuN je????
..


Urdu, original >

.

کرماں ماری

ابھی ابھی
میں پھر
اُس محفل سے اٹھ
بھاگی ہوں
جس میں
رفو، زاہدہ ،عرشی، ٹیبی
میرے
لہنگے پر چمپا گوٹا لگا رہی ہیں
میرے ہاتھوں پر مہندی
اور
میرے ماتھے
مانگ کا ٹیکہ سجا رہی ہیں
بابل کی دعائیں لیتی جا
گاتی جاتی ہیں
دیکھو
میری چوڑیاں دیکھو
ساتھ تمھارے
وہ بھی کچھ
گنگنا رہی ہیں

لیکن یہ سب
کیا ہے آخر
کیا تم کو کچھ خبر نہیں ہے
اس سے آگے
آگ کا دریا
کیسےٹھاٹھیں ماررہا ہے
مجھےیہاں سے لے جائواب
قبل اس کے
یہ گیت تمھارے
چیخیں ماریں
پھوٹ پھوٹ کر رونے لگیں سب
اور
ذرا تم رکو
بتائو
کہاں چلی ہو
کیا تم تک آوازیں میری پوہنچ رہی ہیں
سنو
میری آوازتو سن لو
مجھےبھی ساتھ میں لے کر جائو
مجھے اکیلا چھوڑ کے
ایسے
کیسے تم سب جا سکتی ہو
واپس آئو
آجائو ناں

کم از کم یہ گیت تمھارے
اپنے ساتھ ہی لیتی جائو
دیکھو یہ آوازیں میری
جاں لے لے لیں گی

تم اپنی
آوازیں چھوڑ کے چلی گئی ہو
یہ آوازیں تو
بلکل پاگل کردیتی ہیں
اور
گوٹا کرن بھرے دوپٹے سے
آنسو صاف کرو تو آنکھیں
اورسپنے
سب چھل جاتے ہیں
ہونٹ سدا کو سل جاتے ہیں
اوپر سے
تمھاری
آوازیں ہیں

سنو۔۔۔
یہ تم سب
آخراتنا
ہنستی کیوں ہو؟؟؟

شہناز پروین سحر
..

.


< English

The Ill-Fated
By
Shehnaz Parveen Sahar

Just now
again i
ran away
from the gathering
where
ruffo, zahida, arshi, tabby
are tucking silver gold decorations on
my wedding gown
hena in my hands
and
on my forehead
a tikka in the parting of my hair
‘take the prayers of your parents with you’
they are singing
look
look my bracelets
are also
humming along
with you

But what is
all this
do you not know
how a river of fire
rages on and on
in front of me
take me with you
before the time when
your songs
become screams
burst into tears
and you
just stop for a moment
say
where are you going
can you hear me
listen
hear my voice
take me with you
leaving me alone
like this
how can you go
come back here
come back

Your songs at least
take them with you
i tell you their echoes will claim
my life from me

You left
leaving behind your voices
these voices can
make anyone insane
and
with a cloth of silver gold decorations
when the tears are wiped then eyes
and dreams both
get scratched
lips get sealed forever
and on top of it
your
voices

Listen…
you all!
Why is it that you
laugh so much?

From Urdu by Fauzia Rafique
..

photo-shenaz

Shehnaz Parveen Sahar: An acclaimed poet from Pakistan.

 Photos from Sahar’s Facebook Page

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Don’t Cry For Punjabi

tragedy

 

Written by Randeep Singh

We hear about the “loss” of Punjabi, the “tragedy” of how Punjabi is not taught in schools in West Punjab, of how Punjabi youth speak only Urdu, Hindi or English in Lahore or Chandigarh. “Imagine the sound of Punjabi and the rich cultural heritage it boasts,” writes Affan Chaudhary, “lost forever.”[1]

If there’s a tragedy, it’s the idea that the demise of Punjabi has become a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more one believes it, the less likely one will do anything to reverse it and the less likely that anything will change in any positive respect, least of all the feelings of doom and gloom.

I am not denying Punjabi faces challenges, but the circumstances suggest a more balanced view on the question.

First, Punjabi is neither an “endangered” nor a “vulnerable” language.[2] While it may not enjoy national or official status like Hindi, Urdu or French, neither is Punjabi an endangered or vulnerable language like Basque, Corsican or Gaelic all with less than one million speakers.

Punjabi is in fact one of the world’s most spoken languages with its number of speakers ranging from 80 to 110 million.[3] The total number of Punjabi speakers moreover has been increasing, not decreasing, since 1951.[4]

Second, rather than compare Punjabi to Urdu and Hindi, it would make more sense to compare Punjabi to languages like Gujarati, Pashto and Telugu with which its shares a similar legal and official status. What does the experience of these languages have in common with Punjabi? What initiatives have such languages taken in promoting awareness and education in one’s mother tongue in ways which can help Punjabi?

Third, few languages have proved so culturally vibrant in India, Pakistan and in the diaspora as Punjabi. Punjabi has historically dominated the film and music industry in Pakistan thanks to icons like Noor Jehan. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan raised the profile of Punjabi poetry through his musical performances. And Punjabi MC’s bhangra/dance track “Mundiyan To Bachke Rahin” topped charts in the UK, Italy and Germany and crossed over into hip-hop collaborations with Jay-Z and Timbaland.

We could add the growing popularity of Punjabi through Sufi Rock, Coke Studio and Bollywood. The point is that any discussion on Punjabi needs to count its achievements and opportunities along with its setbacks.

So don’t cry for Punjabi just yet.

[1] Affan Chaudhary, “I Speak Punjabi but My Kids Might Not,” in Express Tribune (March 16, 2012): International Tribune: :://blogs.tribune.com.pk/story/10622/i-speak-punjabi-but-my-kids-might-not/

[2] UNESCO defines an endangered language as one which children no longer the language as a mother tongue in the home; and a vulnerable language as one which is spoken by most children but whose use is restricted to certain domains like the home.

[3] Ethnologue lists Western Punjabi (Lahnda) and its various dialects as the 11th most spoken language with 82.6 million speakers with an additional 28 million speakers of Eastern Punjabi. The Swedish language million speakers, the Swedish language encyclopedia, Nationalencyklopedin (2007) lists Punjabi as the 10th most spoken language in the world with 102 million speakers.

[4] http://www.statpak.gov.pk/depts/pco/index.html

 

An Evening with Saeen Zahoor

Sain_Zahoor_14_leugk_Pak101(dot)com

Written by Randeep Singh

On May 31, 2014, Pakistani Sufi singer Saeen Zahoor performed at Vancouver’s Vogue Theatre, sending the audience into trance, dance and inspiring reverence throughout.

The evening brought together local Indian and Pakistani performers, organizers and audience members. Indo-Pakistani band Naqsh IPB opened the evening with their blend of modern Sufi, rock, classical and filmi musical stylings. Through clashing drums, pulsating guitar riffs and the soaring vocals of Daksh Kubba, Naqsh warmed up the crowd for Saeen.

He entered in his long black kurta embroidered in yellow, ghungroo bells jingling around his ankles, carrying his colourfully decorated ektaara (one-string instrument). “I am not an artist,” he began, “I am a dervish who recites the name of His Master.”

Saeen didn’t just sing: he performed in every sense of the word. The spirit of Bulleh Shah poured through Saeen, his songs, his dance, his story-telling. His two hours on the stage was a musical theatre on the life and poetry of Bulleh Shah.

IMG346
After declaring his devotion to Bulleh Shah in “Ni Mai Kamli Haan” (‘Crazy I Am!’), Saeen sang “Aukhen Painde Lambiyaan Raavan” (‘Hard and Long are the Paths’), of how Bulleh Shah journeyed for miles in search of his teacher. On meeting his teacher, Shah Inayat, Bulleh Shah asks: “how does one find God.” Shah Inayat, planting spring onions, replies: “what do you want to find God for? Just uproot this from here and plant it there.”

Saeen then broke out ecstatically into “Nachna Painda Ae” (‘Dance One Must’) swirling on the stage in his ghunghroo bells just as Bulleh Shah had once for Shah Inayat.

Saeen also sang on Bulleh Shah’s rebukes to legalistic Muslim clerics in “Bas Kare O Yaara Ilm” (‘Enough of Learning, My Friend’). Saeen tells us, Bulleh Shah gave up the shariah for the way of Love just as Heer refused to marry another man according to the shariah because she had been wedded spiritually to her Beloved. On love’s path, Saeen sings “let’s go Bulleh to that place where everyone is blind” in “Chal Bulleha Uthe Chale.”

From his stepping onto the stage, the audience became disciples of Saeen. He sang with abandon, he whirled with frenzy and he ended the night to the boom of the dhol drum bringing the audience to its feet. The air was filled with passion, energy and devotion. People went up to the stage and paid their respects by touching their heads to the stage or folding their hands in reverence: the theatre became a Sufi shrine, a dargah.

Above all, Saeen ensured Bulleh Shah will live on as a shared heritage. His spirit and art were the spirit of love and unity. Says Saeen: “humanity is to love one another.”

Bollywood has run out of Punjabis

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One of the odder facts about Bollywood is who runs it. India’s Hindi film industry is located in Bombay (from whose ‘B’ we get Bollywood). But the two largest communities of this city have little to contribute to the movies.Gujaratis and Marathis are together some two-thirds of the city’s population. Gujaratis dominate most of Bombay’s commerce, including the large capital market, while Marathis run the state and administration efficiently. In Bollywood, however, there’s little sign of either community.Yes, we can point to a great Gujarati actor (Sanjeev Kumar) here and a great Marathi singer (Lata Mangeshkar) there. But they are exceptions.

The dominant communities of Bollywood are two: the Urdu-speakers of North India and, above all, the Punjabis from in and around Lahore. They rule Bollywood and always have. To see why this is unusual, imagine a Pakistan film industry set in Karachi but with no Pashtuns or Mohajirs or Sindhis. Instead the actors are all Tamilian and the directors all Bengalis. Imagine also that all Pakistan responds to their Tamil superstars as the nation’s biggest heroes. That is how unusual the composition of Bollywood is.

A quick demonstration. Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and Salman Khan are the three current superstars. All three are Urdu-speakers. In the second rung we have Hrithik Roshan, Saif Ali Khan, Akshay Kumar, Shahid Kapoor and Ajay Devgan. Of these, Hrithik, Ajay and Akshay are Punjabi while Saif is Urdu-speaking. Shahid Kapoor, as his name suggests, is half-Punjabi and half-Urdu-speaking.Behind the camera, the big names are Punjabi: Karan Johar, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Yash Chopra of Lahore.The Kapoor clan of Lyallpur is the greatest family in acting, not just in Bollywood but anywhere in the world. It has produced four generations of superstars: Prithviraj Kapoor, his sons Raj, Shammi and Shashi, their children Rishi and Randhir, and the current generation of Ranbir, Kareena and Karisma.

Bollywood is a Punjabi industry. We have Dev Anand of Lahore, Balraj Sahni of Rawalpindi, Rajendra Kumar of Sialkot, IS Johar of Chakwal, Jeetendra, Premnath, Prem Chopra, Anil Kapoor and Dharmendra who are all Punjabis. Sunil Dutt of Jhelum, Rajesh Khanna, Vinod Khanna, Vinod Mehra, Suresh Oberoi of Quetta, and all their star kids are Punjabis. Composer Roshan (father of Rakesh and grandfather of Hrithik) was from Gujranwala.

What explains this dominance of Punjabis in Bollywood? The answer is their culture. Much of India’s television content showcases the culture of conservative Gujarati business families. Similarly, Bollywood is put together around the extroverted culture and rituals of Punjabis.

The sangeet and mehndi of Punjabi weddings are as alien to the Gujarati in Surat as they are to the Mohajir in Karachi. And yet Bollywood’s Punjabi culture has successfully penetrated both. Bhangra has become the standard Indian wedding dance. Writer Santosh Desai explained the popularity of bhangra by observing that it was the only form of Indian dance where the armpit was exposed. Indians are naturally modest, and the Punjabi’s culture best represents our expressions of fun and wantonness.

Even artsy Indian cinema is made by the people we call Punjus – Gurinder Chadha, Deepa Mehta and Mira Nair.

Another stream of Bollywood is also connected to Lahore, in this case intellectually, and that is the progressives. Sajjad Zaheer (father of Nadira Babbar), Jan Nisar Akhtar (father of lyricist Javed and grandfather of actor/director Farhan and director Zoya), Kaifi Azmi (father of Shabana), Majrooh Sultanpuri and so many others have a deep link to that city.

Now here’s the problem, actually two problems. First: Bollywood’s Punjabis are removed from the land that nourishes them. Punjab’s cultural capital is Lahore, and most Bollywood Punjabis haven’t ever seen it. Gulzar, whose real name is Sampooran Singh, told me that he didn’t want to return to his native Jhelum. He said he had left an idyllic place and had held on to its memories, which he records in his lyrics. But he’s exceptional and carries his world with him. People like Karan Johar, Aamir Khan and Hrithik Roshan are all Bombay yuppies, whose first language is English. The dialogues are all written in Roman because few read Urdu or Hindi.

Second: While Partition sent the Hindu Punjabis to Bollywood, Lahore’s Muslims are lost to it. The Punjabis of Lahore possess something that all India loves, and that is a high culture in Urdu. This is why Bollywood will always be made in a language that both India and Pakistan recognise as their own.

Unfortunately, there is no young Gulzar in Bollywood today, and there has never been another Manto. Our supply of Lahoris has run out.

The Punjabi provided the firepower of Bollywood, but he needed the space to express himself. Manto discovered this after Partition. Sitting in his lovely house, Lakshmi Mansion off the Mall, I thought of how much of a Bombay writer Manto was. He may have been Lahori but he belonged to Bombay. Bombay has always been India’s most liberal city because the dominance of mercantile Gujaratis and efficient Marathis has made it so.

But Bollywood dearly misses its Punjabis, and awaits the day it can get them again.

Written by Aakar Patel. Originally published in the The Friday Times (July 22-28, 2011): http://www.thefridaytimes.com/beta2/tft/article.php?issue=20110722&page=9

 

Shahmukhi: from whose mouth?

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A few years ago, a Punjabi poet and acquaintance of mine, dismissed the term “Shahmukhi” as something that did not (or should not) exist. He has since anointed it the “Lahori” script, reasons of which I am not sure, other than that Punjabi may be written in the script in and around Lahore.

The term “Shahmukhi”  means “from the mouth of the king (shah).” Which king is a matter of conjecture. One may surmise “Shahmukhi” sprang from the mouths of the Muslim rulers of the Punjab or from Ranjit Singh who maintained the use of Persian in his court and the use of its nastalliq script style, the style most commonly used for Shahmukhi.

Unlike the Gurmukhi and Devanagri scripts, Shahmukhi does not constitute a separate script. We can define Shahmukhi instead as the name given to the Perso-Arabic script when used to write Punjabi, including several letters for sounds found in Punjabi. The term itself is rather quaint and seems to have deliberately been coined so as to have Shahmukhi play partner to Gurmukhi.

But Shahmukhi exists; it has a name and has been naturalized into Punjabi. Those who consider Gurmukhi to “be” Punjabi do Punjabi a disservice. For Punjabi has not only the facility of Gurmukhi, but also the elegance of Devanagri and the beauty of Shahmukhi. From whose mouth then did the term spring? Perhaps not from a king, but from a Punjabi so let it spring some more!

‘Skeena: a Woman Beyond Borders سکینہ: سرحداں توں پار دی عورت’ Review by Surjeet Kalsey

Presented by Surjeet Kalsey at the launch of novel ‘Skeena’ by Fauzia Rafique (Libros Libertad, 2011) in Surrey on April 9, 2011

سکینہ: سرحداں توں پار دی عورت
(فوزیہ رفیق دا ناول “سکینہ”)
ریویو: سرجیت کلسی

فوزیہ رفیق دے ناول “سکینہ” نال میرا رشتہ بہت پرانا ہے کوئی ویہہ پنجھی سال پہلاں جدوں میں فوزیہ نوں اک کانفرنس تے ٹورانٹو ملی سکینہ ناول اودوں دا ہی لکھیا جا رہیا سی۔ اس دے کانڈ ہولی ہولی وگست ہوندے گئے تے ہن آخری روپ وچ ساڈے ہتھاں وچ پہنچیا ہے۔ ناول دی شروعات مادھو لال حسین دی اس کافی نال بہت ہی خوبصورت ڈھنگ نال ہوندی ہے اتے کافی دی ہر سطر ناول دا اک کانڈ ہو نبڑدی ہے:

جھمے جھم کھیڈ لے منجھ ویہڑے، جپدیاں نوں ہر نیڑے
ویہڑے دے وچ ندیاں وگن، بیڑے لکھ ہزار
کیتی اس وچ ڈبدی ویکھی، کیتی لنگھی پار
اس ویہڑے دے نو دروازے، دسویں قلف چڑھائی
تس دروازے دے محرم ناہی، جت شوہ آوے جائی
ویہڑے دے وچ آلا سوہے، آلے دے وچ تاکی
تاکی دے وچ سیج وچھاواں، آپنے پیا سنگ راتی
اس ویہڑے وچ مکنا ہاتھی، سنگل نال کھہیڑے
کہے حسین فقیر سائیں دا، جاگدیاں کوں چھیڑے
(مادھو لال حسین لاہور، ١٥٣٩-١٥٩٩)

بھاگ (١) منجھ ویہڑے (پنڈ ١٩٧١)، سماں “لوڈھے ویلے”،” نماشیں” تے اگلا پاٹھ “رات” ہے۔
بھاگ (٢) مکنا ہاتھی (لاہور ١٩٨١)، جس وچ “میلہ” تے میلے وچ محبوب نوں ملن دا تصور –
رات ویلے محبوب نوں ملن جاندیاں ہولی ہولی تر کدھرے تیری پازیب دی آواز توں لوکاں نوں خبر نہ ہو جائے؛ “اگلے دیہاڑے” دیکھی جائے گی کیہ ہوندا اے تاں جاں فیر “کنڈھے رہی کھلو” ١٩٨٢ دا واقعہ ہے۔

بھاگ (٣) سنگل نال کھہیڑے (ٹورانٹو ١٩٩١) دی “سویر”؛ ٹورانٹو دی “رات” تے ٹورانٹو دے ہی “سرگی ویلے” ساریاں گھٹناواں دا پسار پیکا گھر پاکستان، تے سوہرا گھر ٹورانٹو دا بہت نیڑے دا آلا دوالا ہے جس نال سکینہ دا کوئی واسطہ نہیں پیا ہووے۔ ملک بدلن نال اوہ سماج اوہ دھارناواں اوہ وطیرے تاں نہیں نہ بدلدے، جویں دے تویں ہی رہندے ہین، تے عورت دا درجہ وی اوہی رہندا اے جو گھردیاں نے دتا ہوندا ہے؛ سماج تاں پچھوں آؤندا ہے۔

بھاگ (٤) جاگدیاں کوں چھیڑے (سرے ٢٠٠١) جس وچ “ناں” وچ کیہ پیا اے، ناں تاں کوئی وی ہو سکدا ہے پر ناواں دے بھلیکھے کئی وار زندگی دے اینے وڈے بھلیکھے ہو نبڑدے ہین کہ جیہناں چوں نکلنا مشکل ہو جاندا ہے تے کجھ اس طرحاں دیاں گھٹناواں واپردیاں ہین “اگ”، “رولا”، تے “میری کوئی تواریخ نہیں”۔

سکینہ دا پسار دو ملکاں پاکستان تے کینیڈا وچ وچردا وگسدا تیہہ سالاں دا برتانت حاضر ہے۔ اک بالڑی دیاں معصوم اکھاں آس پاس جو دیکھدیاں ہین تے اوس دے کن جو وڈیاں نوں کہندیاں سندے نے تے فیر اوس دی آپنی نرچھوہ پاردرشی سوچ اوہناں گلاں تے گھٹناواں نوں جس طرحاں گرہن کردی ہے اوس دا ویروے سہت بیان دلچسپ ہے۔ سکینہ روشن دماغ تے سوخم دل والی کڑی دی حیاتی دا روچک تے بے باک ورنن ہے۔ گھٹنا-در-گھٹنا چھوٹیاں وڈیاں گھٹناواں اک دوجی دا ہتھ پھڑی لڑی ہار تردیاں ہین جویں اک سین بعد دوجا سین آ جاندا ہے تے فلم اگے ودھدی جاندی ہے۔ ناول دی ایہہ ودھاء جتھے جیون-برتانت ہون دا بھلیکھا پاؤندی ہے اوتھے اک پاتر-پردھان ناول والے سارے گن سمائی بیٹھی ہے۔ جگیاسا پاٹھک نوں نال لے کے چلدی ہے، اگے کیہ ہووےگا دی چیٹک لاؤندی ہے، پاٹھک نوں انگلی لا کے سکینہ دوڑی جاندی ہے۔

سکینہ دی بولی دی روانگی تے پچھمی پنجاب دی گھیو-گھنی پنجابی پڑھ کے اک وکھری قسم دا احساس ہوندا ہے جس وچ موہ، جھڑک، اپدیش تے صلاح دا احساس ہندا ہے محاورہ شدھ پنجابی تے شبد-چون ڈاڈھی ڈھکویں تے کھچ پاؤ۔ بھا دا رعب داب لہجہ، اماں دا گھر دے ہور جیاں تے دبدبے والا، موہ والا تے سلاہیا لہجہ بولی توں ہی انوبھو ہوندا ہے۔

سکینہ دا وشا-وستو: عورت۔ عورت دا پیکے گھر وچ، عورت دا سوہرے گھر وچ تے سماج وچ درجہ/رتبہٰ سبھیاچارک تے روائتی پچھوکڑ وچ سکینہ عورت دا اک بمب بن ابھردی ہے؛ جس بارے پیکیاں دے سوہریاں دے، تے سماج دے (ہینکڑ جاں اونر والے)، وچار جاں وچاردھارا تے دھارنواں دا کچا-چٹھا پیش کردی ہے۔ اوس دی بولنی، کہنی، رہنی، کرنی تے انسکھاوے ورتاریاں تے کنتو کرن دی سمرتھا نوں جو کھنڈھا کرکے رکھدے ہین کیونکہ اوہ اک عورت ہے جس دا رول حداں وچ رہنا ہے، ایتھوں تک کہ دند کڈھ کے ہسن دی وی مناہی ہے۔ ناول وچوں اگے دو بند پیش کردی ہاں ایہہ دو سین ہین جو پیکیاں دے پیار دیاں موہ دیاں ریشمی تنتاں وچ نوڑی سکینہ وڈی ہوندی ہے

١٩٨٢ وچ جدوں “کئی سیاسی پارٹیاں دے لیڈراں نوں گھر-بندی دا پتہ ہونا اے۔ سرکار کسے نوں اوہدے گھر وچ قید کردی اے، اخباراں وچ خبراں لگدیاں نیں، لوکی لیڈر نوں آزاد کراؤن لئی سرکار تے زور پاندے نیں۔ اوس لیڈر تے اوس پارٹی دا مل ودھ جاندا اے۔

“پر میں، آودے بھا تے ماں جی دی گھر-بندی وچ بس اک اینجہی زنانی آں جیہنوں آودے آپ نوں درست کرن دی لوڑ اے۔نہ اخبار وچ خبر آئی اے، نہ کسے نے میری آزادی لئی کسے نوں کجھ آکھیا اے، تے نہ میرا مل ودھیا اے۔

“ایہہ قیدن سوہنا پاؤندی، چنگا کھاندی تے سانبھ کے رکھی جاندی اے۔ اک گھر دی اتلی منزل تے اک بیڈ تے باتھ اے، کمرہ شاہی قلعے دیاں کئی کوٹھڑیاں توں وڈا ہونا اے۔ روز سویرے ساڈھے چھ وجے چاندی دی ٹرے وچ ناشتہ آ جاندا اے۔ قیدن ست وجے توڑی آودے چار سادی کاٹن دے سوٹاں وچوں اک پا کے تیار ہندی اے۔ نماز پڑھ، قرآن شریف دے تیہاں پاریاں وچوں اک پڑھنا شروع کردی اے۔ اوہ پارہ دس یاراں وجے توں پہلوں ختم ہو جاندا اے، کیدن اوہنوں ولاء پڑھدی اے، اس واری اردو وچ۔”

پیکیاں دے گھر وچ سانبھ سانبھ کے رکھی جاندی چیز وانگ عورت جد اچانک بیگانے گھر تور دتی جاندی ہے پتی دے گھر اودوں نو-ویاہی اتے اوتھوں دے نیم لاگو کر دتے جاندے ہن؛ سکینہ دی شادی کینیڈا دے اک رجے پجے گھر دے آدمی نال کر دتی جاندی ہے تے سکینہ ہن آپنا ملک چھڈ بیگانے ملک تے بیگانے گھر وچ نواز کردی ہے اجے اوس نوں اوتھوں دے ماحول وچ انکولن وی نہیں ہون دتا جاندا کہ میہنے طعنے تے کھروا ورتاؤ پہلاں ہی شروع ہو جاندا ہے۔ نویں ووہٹی دا چاء کدھرے اڈ پڈ جاندا ہے صرف اینا ہی واسطہ رکھیا جاندا ہے کہ گھر وچ اک عورت لیاندی گئی ہے جس دا فرض بندا ہے کہ اوہ باقی دے سارے جیاں دی خدمت کرے، جے کوتاہی کردی ہے تاں اوس نال جو سلوک کیتا جاندا ہے اوس دا دل-ونوا بیان ہے ٹورانٹو دا پتی دا گھر:

“لوکاں شور پایا ہویا اے، کوئی مینوں کھچ کے کھلاردیاں کہندا اے “گیٹ اپ سلٹ، اٹھ کنجری”!  کھلوندیاں ڈھڈ وچ پیڑ دا گھسن وجدا اے، آندراں پنجر نوں وجدیاں نیں، میں کبی ہو جانی آں۔ کوئی وال دھرو کے سدھیاں کردا اے، متھا کسے موڈھے دے ہڈھ وچ وجدا اے؛ گمڑ دیاں وسمدیاں چنگاں مچ پیندیاں نیں۔

“احتشام مینوں قالین تے چھکدا کچن دے فرش تے لیا سٹدا اے۔ ٹائیلاں ابھر کے میرے منہ تے وجدیاں نیں’ ممی جی نے ایہہ کیویں سوچیا کہ برینڈا ایہناں نوں ادھو-ادھ کر لگی اے؟ ٹائیلاں دور جان لگ پئیاں نیں، کوئی مینوں کھلاردا پیا اے۔

“وھاٹ دا فک از دس؟ اوہ میرا سر مائیکروویو وچ تن دیندا اے۔ ناساں  کچے چکن دیاں بوٹیاں وچ کھبھ کے پھیپھڑیاں نوں سڑے لہو دی ہواڑ نال بھر دیندیاں نیں۔

“تے ایہہ؟” اوہ مینوں گھسیٹ کے چلھے کول لے جاندا اے، دیگڑی دا ڈھکن چا، دھون تے ہتھ رکھ، میرا منہ وچ واڑ دیندا اے۔ گچی پیڑ دا شکنجہ، سر کھوہی دا ڈول، دماغ وچ سڑے لہو دی بوٰ ۔

“تیری ایہہ جرأت؟ توں میری ماں نوں بھکھیاں ماریں؟” کوئی مینوں ٹائیلاں تے پٹکاندا اے، وکھیاں فرش تے وجدیاں نیں، “کسے دی ماں تے نہیں مر گئی اے؟”

توں (عورت، اک بیوی) آپنے آپ نوں سمجھدی کیہ ایں؟ جویں سکینہ صرف اک نوکرانی ہووے تے صرف ممی جی دی تیمارداری تے سیوا لئی لیاندی گئی ہووے جویں اوس دا آپنے پتی احتشام نال کوئی دور دا وی واسطہ نہ ہووے اوہ صرف آپنی ممی جی دا تابعدار پتر ہووے تے ماں لئی نوکرانی توں کم کرواؤنا اوس دا دھرمی فرض ہووے؛ پرمپراوادی پتر دا فرض۔

خیر کہانی اگلے پڑ ول جاندی ہے۔ اینی کٹ مار کھا کے سکینہ جدوں رڑھدی کھڑدی گھروں نکل جاندی ہے تے اڈا دتا جاندا ہے کہ اوہ آپنے بوائے-فرینڈ نال بھج گئی اے آپنی عزت تے آنر بچاؤن لئی عورت دی عزت تے آنر نوں مٹی وچ ملا دتا جاندا ہے جویں اوس دی نہ کوئی عزت ہے نہ کوئی آنر۔ تے عام جنتا نوں کیہ؟ اوہناں دی سوچ پرم پراں دے سنگلاں وچ جکڑی سوچ اس توں اگے جا ہی نہیں سکدی تے اوہ سچ من کے عورت نوں بھنڈن لگ پیندے ہین۔ عورت اتے ہوندے تشدد دا مدعا سماج وچ بدل دا غبار بن کے رہ جاندا ہے؛ پیڑت دی حالت دھندلی کر دتی جاندی ہے تے تصویر کجھ اس طرحاں پینٹ کیتی جاندی ہے کہ لگے عورت قصوروار ہے۔ایہی کارن ہے کہ اجے وی آپنے پنجابی/بھارتی بھائی چارے وچ عورتاں/ماواں/دھیاں دے قتل پتیاں/باپاں ولوں کیتے جان دیاں خبراں آئے دن سنن نوں ملدیاں ہین۔ جدوں دوشی چارج کیتے جاندے ہین کیس کورٹاں وچ جاندے ہین تاں بچاء پکھ وچ قتل کیتیاں عورتاں اتے بدکاری دے دوش لا کے اوہناں دے قتل جسٹی فائی کیتے جاندے ہین۔گھناؤنے جرم کرن توں بعد وی دوشی آپنے ورتارے دی ذمہ واری عورت دے سر ہی مڑھ دیندے ہین۔

برینڈا دی مدد نال تے اک پنجابن بلوندر نال ہوئی جان پچھان صدقہ سکینہ ٹورانٹو توں بی سی صوبے دے شہر سرے آ جاندی ہے۔ جتھے اوہ ذکر کردی ہے کہ پچھلے دساں سالاں وچ پہلی وار اوس نوں آزاد آسمان تھلے ساہ لین دا احساس ہوندا ہے تے کینیڈا وچ آؤن دے دس سال بعد پہلی نوکری فارم ورکر دے طور تے ملن دا خوشی بھریا احساس اوس نوں باوری بنا دیندا ہے حالانکہ اوس نوں پتہ ہے کہ اوس دے بھا تے ماں جی نوں ایہہ کم پسند نہیں ہونا۔ ایتھے ہی فارم تے اوس دی ملاقات فارم دے مالک اقبال نال ہوندی ہے۔آس دی اک نویں کرن جاگدی ہے۔

سکینہ نوں لگدا ہے کہ اقبال اک بہت ہی سمجھدار تے ودھیا انسان ہے اتے اس اک خاص پاردرشی درشٹی ہے جس وچ ایہہ سبھ کجھ سنچت ہے:درد نوں سمجھن دا احساس تے شدت نال پیار کرن، کسے دا دکھ سن سکن تے ہر کسے پرتی ستکار ہے۔شبداں دی روح (ارتھاں) نوں سمجھن دی یوگتا ہے، بھاوکتا ہے جو بے شک عورت ہون دا گن ہے (جو کسے کسے وچ ہی ہوندی ہے)، حق انصاف دی سنجیدگی، نیتکتا دے اصولاں دی سوجھی ہے، صبر، سنتوکھ، سہنشیلتا۔ پیارے دے ہلار نے اوس دے سارے سوخم بھاو جگا دتے ہین تے اوس نوں اقبال وچ اوہ سارے گن دکھائی دے رہے ہن- کوملتا، ویدنا، سمندروں ڈونگھا ویدنا بھریا دل ہے تے جو پیار دے قابل (سچجا) ہے جو اوس دی زندگی دی ہاری ہوئی بازی مڑ توں جتا سکن دی شکتی رکھدا ہے۔ سکینہ نوں اقبال دا ملنا کجھ اس طرحاں دی مڑ-سرجیتی دا احساس دے دیندا ہے؛ اوس نوں چڑھدی جوانی دا پیار “اچا متھا” چیتے آ جاندا ہے۔ بے شک آپا نچھاور کرن والی عورت اک وار آپنا سبھ کجھ دل و دماغ، موہ پیار تے ضمیر دی سچمتا نال ارپن کر دیندی ہے بھانویں اوہ چھن-بھنگری ہو جاوے اس دا غم نہیں کردی۔

سکینہ دا پاتر آس پاس دی سوجھی تے آپنے عملاں دا آلے دوآلے تے پیندے اثر توں واقف تے چیتن شخصیت ہے -آلے دوآلے دا خیال رکھن دی سوجھی دانی سبھاء (ماں جی وانگراں)، بولن والے شبداں دا احساس ہے، دوسرے دے بولے شبداں دا صحیح ہنگارا بن جان دی سمرتھا ہے۔عورت اجیہی زندگی دی کامنا کردی ہے فیر اوس دی کامنا اوس نوں سماج دی دلدل وچوں کڈھن توں اسمرتھ کیوں رہندی ہے۔اوس دے پیار نوں پاپ تے اوس دی شخصیت نوں بھنڈیا جاندا ہے سکینہ لئی اقبال اوہ ربی روپ بن کے آیا جس نے اوس دے زخماں تے مرہم دا کم کیتا پر آس پاس وچردے فارماں وچ کم کرن والے ورکر جدوں سکینہ تے آوازے کسدے تاں “سلٹ” کہندے اوس دا جرم صرف ایہہ سی کہ اوس نے اقبال نوں جی-جانو پیار کر لیا سی۔

سماں بدلدا رہندا ہے ملک بدل جاندے ہین پر روڑیھوادی وچاردھارا تے جس طرحاں دا ورتاؤ عورت نال ہوندا ہے، جاں کیتا جاندا ہے اس وچ تبدیلی آؤندی نظر نہیں آؤندی۔ عورت دی ہونی نہیں بدلدی۔ ہاں، اوس در-وہاری ماحول نوں چھڈ کے کتے ہور چلے جانا، سرکھیا گھر وچ پناہ لے کے کینیڈا ورگے ملک وچ پراپت سہولتاں تے سپورٹ ورکراں دی مدد نال آپنی زندگی نوں مڑ کے جیون دا یتن کرن دا سنیہا ابھر کے ساہمنے آؤندا ہے، ایہی سنیہا پچھلے سال چھپے ناول “بلیک اینڈ بلو ساری” وچ وی ملدا ہے۔ عورت دی آپنی وتھیا نوں لوکاں ساہمنے پیش کرنا تے در-ووہاری موہل وچ دکھ-درد دا جیون کٹ رہیاں عورتاں لئی بھرپور تے شکتی شالی سنیہا ہے، مثال ہے جے میں دلدل چوں ابھر سکدی ہاں تے تسیں وی ابھر سکدیاں ہو ہمت کرو، پہلا قدم چک لوو، دہلیز توں پیر باہر پا کے تاں دیکھو، دنیا بدل جائے گی۔کیہ سچ مچ دنیا بدل جاوے گی؟ بہت شکتی شالی سنیہا ہے۔پر عورت نوں چوکھٹ چھڈن سار ہی جو مل تارنا پیندا ہے اوہ سکینہ دے آخری چیپٹر “میری کوئی تواریخ نہیں” وچ سپشٹ ہو جاندا ہے عورت دل و دماغ تے ذہنی طور تے ٹٹ جاندی ہے۔

“کول آودا اج وی اے تے لنگھیا کل وی۔ دوواں وچ ماں جی، بھا تے منحوس جینو ویہنی آں۔اوہ مینوں آودے دند نہیں وکھاندے۔ اوہناں دے دند ہیگے نے؟ میں کول ہو کے ویہنی آں۔ ماں جی نماز پڑھدے پئے نے؛ بھا حقہ پیندا پیا اے، تے جینو آودا منہ پیلی چنی وچ ولیٹی پئی اے۔ کئیاں دے مکھ چیتے نہیں آندے۔ ہالی توڑی میں اقبال تے گامو دا فرق نہیں پچھانیا۔”

ناول دے اخیر تے جو گھٹناواں واپردیاں ہین اقبال دا قتل تے پتہ لگنا کہ اقبال تاں اوس دے بچپن ویلے دا اوہی گامو ہے جو آپنی عورت نوں مار کے فرار ہو گیا سی؛ تے نال ہی سکینا دا اتوادیاں نال سنبندھ ہون دے شک دے گھیرے وچ آ جانا تے پولیس دا پہرہ ایہہ سبھ کجھ سوچ کے سکینہ نوں اک وار آپنا مانسک توازن گواچ گیا لگدا ہے جدوں سکینہ آپنے آپ نوں کہندی اے -“میری کوئی تواریخ نہیں، میری کوئی کہانی نہیں، میرا کوئی ناں نہیں” میں آودے آپ نوں چیتے کرانی آں۔

جدوں میں سکینہ دا سارا کھرڑا اس دی شاہ مکھی توں گورمکھی وچ اتارے توں بعد سکرپٹ دے پروف پڑھن لئی کر رہی ساں اس دا اک اک ورقہ اک اک سطر میں پڑھدی جا رہی ساں تے سکینہ اک سرحداں توں پار دی عورت ہو میرے ساہمنے اجاگر ہو رہی سی۔ سکینہ نہ پاکستان دی اے، نہ بھارت دی نہ انگلینڈ دی نہ کینیڈا دی سکینہ ہر اوس عورت دی دیہہ من تے ذہن تے ہنڈھائی حیاتی دا سجیو بمب ہے، ہر اوس عورت دی کہانی ہے جو پرم پرا دیاں سنگلاں وچ جکڑی پیدا ہوندی ہے تے جکڑی ہی دنیا نوں چھڈ کے جان توں پہلاں آپنے آپے دی غلام ستھتی تے کنتو کرن دی جرأت کردی ہے، بندھن مکت جیونا چاہوندی ہے تے اک آزاد سوے-مان والے ویکتی دی ماند ہی دنیا توں جانا چاہوندی ہے۔سکینہ کسے طریقے بچ جاندی ہے۔ تے جو عورتاں بچ جاندیاں ہین اوہ سماج دیاں ساریاں عورتاں نوں آپنی مثال دے کے دسنا چاہوندیاں نیں کہ جے تسیں بچ سکدیاں ہو تاں بچ جاؤ بھاویں گھر ہی کیوں نہ چھڈنا پوے، تے سکینہ اک مثال ہے۔پر ہزاراں سکینہ گھراں دے تشدد دی بلی چڑھ گئیاں نیں تے بلی دے رہیاں نیں تے بچ نہیں سکدیاں، اوس پرم پراوادی ماحول توں نکل نہیں سکدیاں، دنیا دا ڈر، رشتے داراں دا ڈر، کیہ کرن گیاں کتھے سر لکاؤن گیاں؟

قانون بدل گئے، عورتاں نے چلن بدل لئے، سہائتا مہیا ہو گئی، پر نہ پرم پرا دیاں لیہاں بھریاں نہ روڑیھوادی سوچ، نہ عورت پرتی دھارناواں ہی بدلیاں۔ سماجک سوچ تے ورتارا بدلن دی پکی نشانی ایہہ ہووے گی جس دن عورت نوں اک انسان سمجھ کے اوس نوں برابر دی عزت تے ستکار دتا جائےگا، اوس نوں گھٹیا درجے دی جاں نوکرانی دے طور تے نہ ورتیا جائےگا تے کسے عورت نوں مجبور ہو کے بدسلوکی دا ماحول چھڈن لئی ننگے-پیریں، سیت ادھی راتیں، نکے نکے بالاں نال آپنی چوکھٹ نہ چھڈنی پئے گی۔کسے باپ نوں آپنی کنجک دھی صرف آنر لئی بلی نہیں چڑھاؤنی پئے گی نہ ہی کسے پتی نوں اپنے بے لگام کرودھ دا شکار آپنی پتنی نوں بناؤنا پوے گا اوس دن ایہہ سماج رہن یوگ ہووےگا۔

سکینہ دی آمد کینیڈا دے پنجابی ساہت وچ نگھر وادھا ہے فوزیہ رفیق دی دلوں دھنوادی ہاں تے مبارک باد دیندی ہاں کہ سکینہ نے سماج نوں اک وار فیر جھنجوڑ کے جگاؤن دا جتن کیتا ہے۔

First published in Gurumukhi by Indo Canadian Times from Surrey BC in May 2011

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‘Revealing the Invisible Heritage of Panjab’, Panjab Digital Library

Appeal for Support

‘What if you could give a book to the entire world? Well, now you can when you Adopt a Book for digitization through the Panjab Digital Library. Your simple, generous gift comes with the promise that a piece of history will be globally available forever.

About Panjab Digital Library (PDL)
‘We continue to preserve Panjab’s heritage for future generations. Today you can view one million pages free at www.PanjabDigitalLibrary.org. To date, PDL has digitally preserved more than five million pages of manuscripts, books, newspapers, magazines and photographs.

‘But we can’t keep it up without you, our supporters around the world. Will you join with others today who are dedicated to preserving the stories and truths of Panjab? Individual donations in support of our work is the best way to help in protecting the data for perpetuity.

‘You can also support PDL’s work through a direct donation to the organization. You will be amazed at how far even a few dollars today could go toward ensuring the strength of PDL’s work in 2011!

‘Your one US dollar ($1) helps us locate, digitize, publish online and preserve 4 pages

Archives Digitized
Kurukshetra University
Panjab Languages Department
Government Museum Chandigarh
Shiromani Gurduara Parbandhak Committee
Delhi Sikh Gurduara Management Committee

Let us preserve what remains

‘Panjab Digital Library was recognized as the “Best E-Content in Culture & Heritage”
of South Asia – 2010

‘All donations are tax-deductible in the US and Canada where Sikh Research Institute is accepting them on behalf of PDL.’

Panjab Digital Library
#867, Sector 64, SAS Nagar
Panjab – 160065
info@panjabdigilib.org
South Asia: +91-981-411-3047
North America: +1-210-704-7096
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‘Kitab Trinjan’ a poem by Zubair Ahmed

(To comemorate the end of Kitab Trinjan)

Lungh geyaN shamaN yaar deyaN
Yaad surahi bhhar bhhar rakhh lae
Din beetay khali paun bharae
Adh-bhulay nooN poora ker lae
Bunh bunh rakhh lae sawgundh gallaN de
Ghul ghul jo dhooN hoi
PauRiyoN leh gaye
Andar dub lae aas naroi
MuTheiN purtdi hawaeiN nup lae
MuR muR kai oh chaitay kerna
Jis na hona jo na hoi
Buss aj raat ruj vuss lae
Unt fana jo hoi

Author Zubair Ahmed made Kitab Trinjan possible through his dedication and volunteer work. View more here

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Lahore’s First Punjabi Bookstore Deemed Shut

Kitab Trinjan (KT), the first dedicated shop of Punjabi books in Lahore, is due to close end of this month.

Kitab Trinjan was established in 1997 to encourage the publishing and dissemination of Shahmukhi Punjabi literature in a situation where Punjabi books were shunned away by the ‘regular’ bookshops that were happy instead to sell the more ‘lucrative/prestigious’ Urdu and English books. With regard to the privilege enjoyed by English and Urdu at the regular book shops, however, the situation in 2009 remains more or less the same.

In the last 12 years, thanks to the continuous and ongoing volunteer work of Zubair Ahmed Jan, Kitab Trinjan has sold more than 1,200,000 (12 Lakh) Punjabi books; bought 7,71,635 books from other publishers; published works created by modern Punjabi writers under various imprints; but most of all, has built a cultural community unique to itself. This community is built by extending regular interaction, support and contribution to literary communities of the Punjab, Panjab and the Diaspora. Zubair’s ongoing support to Sangat Shah Hussain in Lahore, to the online Punjabi news and cultural digest Wichaar.com, to the largest online archive of Punjabi Gurumukhi/Shahmukhi literature Apnaorg, to the only Punjabi literary quarterly magazine that prints simultaneously in Gurumukhi and Shahmukhi Temahi Sanjh, for example, has strengthened the respective organizations and cultural communities.

I had the opportunity to visit Kitab Trinjan in its very first year when Activist Zafaryab Ahmed told me in Islamabad about it, and later introduced me to Author Zubair Ahmed who was instrumental in establishing, and then managing it. Later, i went to the shop, a 1.4-roomed top floor of a depleted inner city building in Lahore, though inside, it was the most inspiring place to be. In fact, that was the first time that i had actually seen hundreds of Shahmukhi Punjabi titles in one place. It created a feeling of wonderment where i was enchanted also by the fact that the development of Punjabi literature was not in the hands of policymakers of Pakistan but us, the writers and readers of Punjabi.

Here is a 1998 photo of Kitab Trinjan from the outside, taken by Amarjit Chandan, a long time supporter of KT.

Kitab Trinjan. Lahore..1999. Pic Amarjit Chandan(2)

Detail, Kitab Trinjan by Amarjit Chandan, 1998

In 2006 and 2007, i found Kitab Trinjan in a newer, bigger and brighter place. It was doubtless the most well-organized and well-managed book shop of the three Punjabi book sellers on and around Mozang Chowk since Zubair had help from KT’s only paid worker, Ghulam Haider who worked as a full time sales associate.

The following are the reasons given for the closure of Kitab Trinjan: That there were no Punjabi book stores in 1997 and now there are two more that are operating as full time businesses; That there is duplication of services between Suchet Kitab Ghar and Kitab Trinjan; That KT is limited by its voluntary nature; and, that Zubair Ahmad, the Volunteer Manager of KT, wants to focus on his creative work.

The above reasons do not jell with me as they defy all logic; and in that, it seems that this decision is taken for the benefit of less than half a dozen people instead of the benefit of even those 6,896,000 Punjabis who were living in the city of Lahore just after Kitab Trinjan first opened its doors. In the 1998 Census, the total population of Lahore was counted as 6.8 Million, however, later estimates indicate that the population of Lahore was 10 million in 2006.

My problem is as follows:
The first reason encourages us to believe, in defiance of all demographic considerations, that perhaps there are no Punjabi speakers in the additional 3.2 Million people that were counted as living in Lahore in 2006; that may be there is no increase in the city population since 2006; or if the population increased it did no sprout any new buyers of Punjabi books; that there are no new students of Punjabi language; and, certainly no new lovers of Punjabi literature. Else, the simple fact of population increase would have been enough to justify the continued existence of, at least, these three Punjabi book stores. In other words, such reasoning suggests that 3 BOOK STORES are too many for 6 to 8 MILLION Punjabi speakers of Lahore.

The second reason perpetuates confusion as it meddles with the roles of Suchet Kitab Ghar a Publisher of books and magazines who operates as a distributor/retailer to support its primary role as a Publisher; and Kitab Trinjan, a Bookseller/Distributor who has published books only on occasion.

The third and the fourth reasons are issues that can easily be resolved by Zubair himself if given the chance. Having an outlet for Punjabi books at his home in one of the suburbs of Lahore will eliminate the daily hardship, and leave more time for creative work.

I also do not share the ‘expatriate’s politically correct’ statement forwarded by my friend and another long time supporter of KT, Ijaz Syed, in his response to the closure of Lahore’s first Punjabi book shop.
‘My heartiest felicitations to the Central Committee members for taking this timely decision! Kitab Trinjan played its historical pioneering role in the publication and distribution of punjabi books at a time when this service was most needed. In my view, along with other Central Committee friends, a lot of credit for maintaining and managing Kitab Trinjan for these twelve long years rightly goes to Zubair Jan. Of course, none of this would have happened without Najam Sahab‘s benevolent presence.’

In accordance with the ‘enlightened expatriate’s politically correct guide’, a non-critical acceptance and appreciation of this decision has duly been tendered by Ijaz, else, why would he call it a ‘timely decision’? Is it really the requirement of this time to close one of the three (progressive) Punjabi book centers in Lahore?
Na!
I think it’s time to relocate this one, and open the fourth.
Tell you why.
When Kitab Trinjan was selling an average of 1 lakh books per year, Suchet Kitab Ghar and Sanjh Publications were also registering sales, I am willing to bet on it! So, if in the last 12 years, all three have shown an increase in sales, i don’t see why Kitab Trinjan needs to shut. Also, if the establishment of a sales/distribution center by Suchet Kitab Ghar (and Sanjh) did not have a negative impact on Kitab Trinjan, why now, Kitab Trinjan needs to be eliminated in the interest of one or both?

Maqsood Saqib of Pancham/Suchet and Amjad Salim of Sanjh Publications have, for different reasons, earned my un-wavering respect and love as people and professionals; and, i fully support the work of both. The same, may be more so, is true for Zubair Ahmad of Kitab Trinjan.

In other words, Bawa Jees te Bawi Jees, please do not be presenting Lahore in such narrow terms. The City and its people need and deserve all three of these wonderful spaces to develop Punjabi literature; and still, a few more. Not less!

Fauzia Rafique
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frafique@gmail.com

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Brilliante Punjab: Offering to a writer, an editor, and a reader!

This offering of appreciation is made to three individuals who have nurtured Punjabi with creative excellence for many years; and, in different ways, all three have inspired content at Uddari Weblog during its first year.

Likhari Amarjit Chandan
Sodhi Maqsood Saqib
PaRihar Bharat Bhushan

As we all have a bit of a likhari, a sodhi and a paRihar in us, it is height of pleasantness to find individuals who are brilliant in any one area. All three have a luminous aura of work that has enriched Punjabi literature and literary communities in South Asia and Abroad.

Indeed, our writer is also an activist and a photographer; the editor, a publisher and fiction writer; and the reader, a blogger and web publisher.

Amarjit Chandan
amarjit-chandan-self-portrait-london-1989
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Amarjit Chandan may be only one of the eight contributors and authors of Uddari Weblog but his presence is way more than his number share. Here are the top three.

Chandan made this most amazing contribution of over fifty portraits of Punjabi and South Asian writers, artists and poets to Uddari Art: Amarjit Chandan, a photographer’s profile

And, the second, by sending original photos of over a dozen great inspiring women, he hurried the creation of ‘Great women of Punjabi origin‘ in the very first month of Uddari. Photos included activists Gulab Kaur, Kewal Kaur, Tahira Mazhar Ali Khan, Vimla Dang and Sophia Duleep Singh.

Its only befitting than to begin the second year of Uddari with Amarjit Chandan being the first author to be added to Punjabi MaaNboli Writers Page next month. Till then, view:
Chandan’s website
And
Search results for ‘amarjit chandan’ at Uddari Weblog

Maqsood Saqib
saqib-4
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Maqsood Saqib belongs to the breed of editors (and publishers) who will always prioritize quality over for example, a pressing dateline or social and monetary concerns. Though this breed may be rare in Punjabi literary journalism and at that, disappearing fast, Maqsood Saqib continues to gain strength with his ongoing output of high quality Punjabi literature in the form of books and magazines.

Saqib works out of a second floor office on a busy intersection in Lahore. The editing, production, retail and management of both Suchet Kitab Ghar and Monthly Pancham takes place in an equivalent of a two bedroom apartment with no balcony.

In 2007, i had the pleasure one time of entering that office and finding Maqsood Saqib not in his usual chair at the entrance behind a table and four guest chairs, but sitting in a fully furnished bed that had made an unexpected appearance in the middle of the production room.

The area designated here as ‘the middle of the production room’ is a 9’/12′ space erstwhile being used to get to the washroom in the right corner, to the kitchen counter straight ahead, the safe room in the left corner, photocopying and printing machines by the right wall, and the desktop publishing station by the left. Let me not forget however, that this exact area also works as a drawng room for staff and guests.

There, sitting upright in his sick bed with feverish red eyes, our editor/publisher was guiding the production of monthly Pancham from the tent of his comforter.

The second endearing episode relates to the camera ready Shahmukhi copy of my poem ‘Social self de loR’ (Need for a Social Self) that i had been asked to come and proofread for a 2006 issue of Pancham. There were a couple of typos, sure, and i handed it back to him. But… he said, this does not make much sense ‘performer dae leeRiaN andar vekhan vaal da pinda? (‘In the guise of a performer, the body of a spectator’). I said, yes, ‘vekhan vaal’ from Urdu ‘tmaashbeen’; he said, sure but ‘vekhan vaal da pinda?’

It was not until he actually held an imaginary solitary strand of hair above the table in front of me that i saw the mistake. The verse read as ‘viewing the body of a hair’ instead of ‘the body of the spectator’… It was hilarious to me but without affording a smile, he wrote it down: ‘vekhan-vaal’ as one word instead of ‘vekhan vaal’ as two.

I wonder if any other editor of Punjabi literature would have found, and then corrected, this ‘vaal-brobar’ mistake that was big enough to condemn a poem to an unintended hole of hilarity.

Here is some information on Maqsood Saqib’s work:
Another image in Uddari Photo Album

Bharat Bhushan
bhushan
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The first person who bought a book at Punjabi Books turned out to be none other than the Blogger at paash.wordpress.com who is determined to preserve everything written by Paash and about Paash. Bhushan believes that ‘the tragedy of Punjabi literature and culture has been that we have not done enough to preserve our history’.

Residing in UK, Bhushan bought the Shahmukhi edition of collected works of Paash titled ‘Paash, Sari Shairi’, edited by Maqsood Saqib and published by Suchet Kitab Ghar. Bhushan considers himself to be a ‘voracious reader of literature, especially Punjabi poetry’. He is a Paash enthusiast, and shares with us his motivation to collect materials about him:

‘I noticed from so many blogs in Hindi and Punjabi that there are some excerpts from Paash poems, and people are asking for more information about Paash poetry in Punjabi, Hindi, English and other languages, and more about his life and times. So I thought why not collect all of his poetry and other writings, the stories behind his writings, his life and times, his photographs, and academic research on his poetry, all at one place– a sort of reference point whereby it would be easier for others to access all this information. Hence my Paash blog.’
Bharat Bhushan

Brilliante Weblog Award is heartfelt appreciation of this community to Amarjit Chandan, Maqsood Saqib and Bharat Bhushan (i wonder about it too! Bhushan Jee, is this your real name?).

Fauzia Rafique
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frafique@gmail.com

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Most viewed Uddari posts 2008-2009

April 2008 – April 2009

In April 2008, Uddari Weblog was viewed over 600 times, by March 2009 the number had risen to 5000 views with the totals reaching 41000

Top Posts

Photo Album: Foto Mandli 2,361 views

Great Women of Punjabi Origin:
Punjab deyaN ManniaN PerwanniaN ZnaniaN
1,931 views

Punjabi Poems: NazmaN 1,758 views

Cultural Events: Rehtal Mehfli Varqa 1,670 views

Punjabi MaNboli Writers: Punjabi MaNboli Likhari 1,444 views

Punjabi MaNboli Publishers: Punjabi Maanboli Chhapay1,202 views

‘Sanjh’ A New Punjabi Literary Magazine 897 views

Slumbering Over Islamic Unity 887 views

All-Time Favorites
April 2008 – April 2009

Autobiography of the Great Dada Amir Haider Khan (1904-1986)

1. Royalty Rights in Punjabi Publishing

2. Royalties for Punjabi Language Authors

Modern Punjabi Literature at UBC: A glass half full!

Amarjit Chandan’s Poem being Carved in Stone in Oxfordshire

3. Author Royalties Down to Definitions in the Punjab

Post Retirement Positions for Musharraf

Bhagat Singh Shaheed Statue

Kishwar Naheed to Ahmad Faraz

‘Identity Card’ by Mahmoud Darwish in Punjabi

Lost and (Not) Found: Teen Idol Afzal Sahir

Kikli 13 July

THE SHOCK OF RECOGNITION: Looking at Hamerquist’s ‘Fascism and Anti-Fascism’ by J. Sakai

Yaar da Ditta Haar by Fauzia Rafiq

‘Porn Creation’ by Fauzia Rafiq

Most popular posts on Uddari pages

Sixty Years of Unflinching Beauty, 1948-2008

Kishwar Naheed: A Great Woman from the Punjab

Sophia Duleep Singh: A Great Punjabi Woman

Recent Raves
‘No Heer please, we’re Sikhs!’

Punjabi MaaNboli and the Punjabis-1

Fauzia Rafique
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Uddari is One

April 11, Uddari Weblog is one year new!

134 Posts

300 Comments

295 approved

First post
April 11, 2008

Photo by Partap Singh Ahdan, Lahore 1943

Photo by Partap Singh Ahdan, Lahore 1943


Title
Aahu Chashm Ragini
Photo by
Partap Singh Ahdan
Sourced by
Amarjit Chandan

Post intended to be the first
Royalty Rights in Punjabi Publishing

First Comment
‘It is so unfortunate that in the new provincial assembly there is no party/individual/group to voice the right of children to study in the mother tongue. maybe we need to start a signature campaign to promote the cause.’
Posted by
Chitrkar
On
Home Uddari Mudhla Warqa
Submitted
2008/04/07 at 9:19pm

First Uddari Page
Great Women of Punjabi Origin – Punjab Diyan Mannian Perwannian Zananian
Added on
2008/04/20

Kewal Kaur, a Naxalite activist

Kewal Kaur, a Naxalite activist

First post
Kewal Kaur: A Great Punjabi Woman
Photo and information by
Amarjit Chandan

First Uddari blog site
Uddari Art

First work of art
Shahid Mirza’s ‘Kala MaiNdha Bhaes’

In
Modern Art by Punjabis
On
May 23 2008

Fauzia Rafique
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frafique@gmail.com

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Punjabi MaaNboli and the Punjabis-2

Punjabi is the mother tongue of 90-100 million people; out of this, Pakistan claims 63 million, and India 29. The rest of us are sprinkled around the world where Canada is the Fourth largest host with UK being the Third. In these four countries, Punjabi is deemed ‘the most commonly spoken’ language in Pakistan, ‘the 11th most commonly spoken’ language in India, ‘the 2nd most common’ spoken language in the UK, and ‘the 4th most common’ spoken language in Canada.

Yet a UNESCO report lists it as endangered to disappear in the next few decades. And, even when we can not find the report, it is apparent that the extinction may well happen if we do not take notice of the situation faced by Punjabi Maanboli at all our present locations.

Even though Punjabi MaaNboli has suffered in India from Hindi and English as it has in Pakistan from Urdu and English, its effects are not as devastating. There are many reasons for this but the most intriguing is the one that has to do with the situation in which influential Punjabis found themselves at the time of Partition.

‘Influential Punjabis’ is a flexible, rather ‘loose’, term for the decision-makers of the Punjab at different times in our history; and, it allows for diverse social formations for all three of our contexts: India, Pakistan, and the Diaspora.

The Influential Punjabis

Language as identity emerged as an important issue for Punjabis in both India and Pakistan but the positions were as distant as the two proverbial banks of River Chenab.

Where In 1947, language became one of the strongest symbols of the survival of Sikh identity for Sikh Punjabis in India, for influential Muslim Punjabis the mother language was one of the many hindrances to the implementation of the ‘ideology of Pakistan’. The status of Sikh Punjabis as an insecure minority in Hindu-dominated India was reaffirmed as bloodshed ensued among Muslims and Sikhs across new borders. On the other hand, Muslim influential Punjabis ‘owned’, so to speak, the new state of Pakistan; and, continue to be the major stake holders in the country. In that still-born concept, the growth of a ‘Muslim’ identity was deemed crucial to the survival of the new state; and so, Urdu and English were awarded the status of national languages to rule and ‘unify’ the people who were rooted in five distinct cultural, linguist and geographic locations in a far-apart ‘nation’.

Most Punjabis reside in the Pakistani province of the Punjab where it is the mother language of 44% of the population; better still, because of the privileges and influences Punjabis enjoy in the country, it is understood and spoken by 70% of the population. Yet Punjabi has no status in Pakistan. The country has two official languages, English and Urdu, although none is the mother tongue of any indigenous group in the areas included in it. Punjabi remains un-acknowledged in Pakistan; it does not enjoy the status of, for example, the third national official language or even the official language of the province of the Punjab. As a result, Punjabi is neither taught at any level of the provincial education system nor is it the language of instruction or interaction at any level of guidance or governance. This assures that the language remains bereft of jobs, resources, teachers, educationists, students, researchers, writers, publishers and readers in Pakistani Punjab where 60% of all Punjabis live.

Despite discriminatory policies and practices of the Muslim Punjabi ruling elites, a tremendous development of Punjabi language and literature continues to happen in Pakistani Punjab, and i am glad to say that it is because of the painstaking continuous work of cultural activists and intellectuals of West Punjab. With no or negligible support from successive provincial or federal governments, political parties and vested religion-based interests, Punjabi continues to be spoken, written and read by millions.

In India, although only 3% of the population is ‘native’ Punjabi speaker yet it fares way better in comparison. Here, Punjabi is recognized as one of the official languages of Chandigarh, the shared state capital; and, of the states of Delhi, Panjab and Haryana. In the state of Panjab, Punjabi acquired the status of an official language in September 2008. Now it is taught in schools, and is the language of interaction at some levels of provincial government. This has been accomplished because of the persistence of East Punjabi politicians, cultural activists and intellectuals who did not allow the government of India to disregard their language rights.

It is also true that since the Partition, much of the direction to the movements for Punjabi language development around the world has been provided by progressive writers and intellectuals from East Punjab.

Living in the third space, we continue to reflect similar patterns regarding our mother language. Out here as well, Punjabi language is nurtured by East Punjabi writers and cultural activists while West Punjabi counterparts continue to avoid any allegiance to it by choosing to write in Urdu or English. Few middle class families in Pakistan speak Punjabi at home, and this is how it is in most our families in North America. Though this is a burning issue for East Punjabi communities as well but East Punjabi community leaders have developed organizations to discuss it, spread awareness and to improve the situation. Such structures, however, are still hard to find in Pakistani Punjabi communities in the West.

In my view, the saving grace for Pakistani Punjabis has been the efforts of dedicated Punjabi intellectuals/activists such as Dr. Manzur Ejaz and Safir Rammah, who built the APNA website in Washington DC to publish Punjabi literature in both Shahmukhi and Gurumukhi. This valuable work has now branched into a bi-script quarterly literary journal, and an online Punjabi daily newspaper.

In all our physical spaces, we face similar problems with important yet marginal differences. This prompts similar solutions. An example of this is the formation of ‘chairs’ in educational institutions. From my perspective, the downside to Punjabi language development was the formation of ‘Sikh’ chairs where a large proportion of development effort went into the hands of religious interests in India and in the West. The same solution is now being implemented in Pakistan by initiating the ‘Sufi’ chairs.

It is important for the health of languages and cultures to take shape in non-restrictive creative environments, and so we must find, support and create secular spaces to develop Punjabi MaaNboli literature, languages and cultures. An interesting example of this came out last month where a folk singer was not allowed to sing Heer when requested by the audience at a music concert in a Khalsa College in India.

Also view Punjabi MaaNboli and the Punjabis-1/The PLEA Event: Need for Capacity Building

Numbers from Wiki
Top Ten Punjabi speaking countries
Pakistan: 80,000,000
India: 30,000,000
United Kingdom: 1,600,000
Canada: 800,000
United Arab Emerates: 720,000
United States: 700,000
Saudi Arabia: 640,000
Hongkong: 270,000
France: 180,000
Australia: 120,000
Genetic Markers
‘Roughly 42% of genetic markers in the Punjab were of West Asian origin, the highest amongst the sampled group of South Asians’ (1).
The areas included in West Asia now have the following countries in it: Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Cypress, Lebanon, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbiajan, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgystan, Kazakhastan.
Main Dialects
Punjabi has 28 dialects (PU, Patiala), the following 12 are recognized by Language Department of Punjab, India.
1. Pothohari, 2. Jhangi, 3. Multani, 4. Dogri, 5. Kangri, 6. Pahari, 7. Majhi, 8. Doab, 9. Malwai,10. Powadhi,11. Bhattiani,12. Rathi
Major Religious Groups
Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, Christian
Scripts
Gurumukhi, Persio-Arabic/Shahmukhi, Devnagri

Fauzia Rafique
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frafique@gmail.com

References
1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punjabi_people
2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overseas_Pakistani#Canada
3. http://www.advancedcentrepunjabi.org/intro1.asp
4. http://iaoj.wordpress.com/2008/09/15/punjabi-becomes-official-language-of-indian-punjab/
5. http://www12.statcan.ca/english/census06/analysis/language/allophone_cma.cfm
6. http://www12.statcan.ca/english/census01/Products/Analytic/companion/lang/highlights.cfm
7. http://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Punjabi_language
8. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Toronto_Area
9. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Canada
10. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punjabi_language
11. studentsoftheworld.info

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