Monday, March 19, 2018



Dalai Lama in Jammu..Addresses passouts and huge gathering at the first convocation of Central university Jammu held on 18th March, 2018.

He said:

" Constant Anger and fear affect our immune system.It is the duty if our educational system to  further and inculcate the basic character of compassion . "

" I have strong criticism against Modern teaching and Education System as such. It is only focussed on material values."

"This 21st century must be bid for the century of peace and dialogue not through prayers but actions by young people who need to play their role through determination and will power "

" Respect seven billion human beings on this planet.Difference of opinion was always there but using force to face this difference is  not justified. Once you resort to violence, there will be counter violence and the consequences could be unpredictable"

" Practitioners of Compassion not only make others happy, they also receive happiness in return."

It was a  great privilege to listen to this Guru of peace and compassion. His concern is   humanity at large . It appears that  he happens to be amongst a few of his kind  left  on this planet. He speaks, thinks and acts with compassion alone.

(Autar Mota)

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Sunday, March 18, 2018



(Photo.. Autar Mota)

So many relatiions ,   links    , friends, networks, And  this vibrant world all around  , But then   the individual  ,Just lonely and set against  fundamental solitariness. Be carefree and  the life is a vehicle in motion , Think a little,Then  all this , A moment's play only.

Sometimes I feel like this . I gave it a poetic expression today ...

Rishte Naate  hain jag Jhamelaa hai
Aadmi Dhar-Asal Akelaa hai.
Mast rahiye to chalti   gaadi hai,
Soch Lo Jo , to pal ka khela hai.

(Autar Mota)

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Saturday, March 17, 2018



                      ( Moong Daal and Vopal Haak)

TEIL (sesame seeds) PREPARATION..

Teil  preparation and distribution was an important post delivery  ceremony in our families. It was prepared and distributed on 11th day of the delivery by inlaws family of a married woman. The child and mother were given a bath and sometimes it coincided with shraan  sondher ( purification bath) ceremony.  This was followed by a feast in the house and close relatives would be invited. One of the dishes prepared for the feast used to be Moong  daal and Vopal Haak.

White Sesame seeds were mixed with dry fruits , sugar candy pieces and a pinch of salt. This mixture was mildly fried and  then distributed to relations and neighbours. Some mixture was also  thrown around the bed or sitting place of the daughter in law who had delivered a baby. She would also be asked to have a little of this Teil. Sufficient quantity of Teil was also sent to parental home of the daughter in law for distribution by them.
 On 12th  day of delivery,, the daughter in law would go to her parental home for further post delivery rest and recuperation .
Sesame seeds are an excellent source of copper, a very good source of manganese, and a good source of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, molybdenum, vitamin B1, selenium and dietary fiber.

(Autar Mota)


Vopal Haak.....Handh and vopal haak are two vegetables of  yore that find mention in Vaaks of Lak Ded. Vopal haak is green leafy vegetable that grows in wild on hills surrounding kashmir valley.saw it at Gulmarg. Vopal Haak leaves were  dried and then used as powder throughout the year. It is still sold by many Bohra shops in jammu at Rs1000 to 1200 per kg.

Generally about    40 gms of vopal haak powder is added  to 250gms of Sabut moong Daal . Finally, when cooked,  add two table spoons of Desi ghee or clarified Butter. Excellent to taste.
Vopal haak was  cooked on rituals like Shraan Sondher, Kaahnethar , Zara Kaasai , Mekhla, Hawan Ann Pravesh and many other rituals or ceremonies  in Kashmiri Pandit families.

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.......Habib Jalib..

Aik hamein āvaāra kahnaa  koyee  badaā ilzaām nahīn

Duniyaa  vaale dil vālon ko aur Bahut kuchh kahtay  hain......

( Habib Jalib )

Habib jalib ( 1928-1993 ) was a communist and a revolutionary poet..He was associated with progressive writers movement in the subcontinent . He was a Punjabi born and brought up in Hoshiarpur ( Punjab ) .Jalib had a  colloquial style to draw large audiences who related to his poems. He was repeatedly imprisoned  for leading demonstrations against establishment and rulers in his country opposing martial law  or  Gen. Zial Ul Haq's rule .

Once, in jail ,  he demanded pen and paper .    The Jail superintendent  told Jalib :

" This time  , I am under Instructions  from above that no  pen or paper should be provided to You for writing your poetry against the Government ."

To this jalib replied :

 " Tell Your Bosses that Jalib shall Recite his poems to  jail Guards  , who will recite it in the town square, and so it will reach  Lahore .”

“No poet since Wali Dakkani has been able to capture greater audience than Habib Jalib. He is truly the poet of the masses..”

[Faiz Ahmed Faiz]

Read these lines written by him....

Onchey Onchey Aiwaanon Mein Moorakh Hukm Chalaayein.
Qadam Qadam par iss nagri mein pandit Dhakkey Khaayein .
Dharti par Bhagwaan bane hain Dhan Hai Jin ke pass
............Bhaye kabir Udhaas .

Geet Likhaayein paise naa dein Film Nagar ke log.
Unn ke Ghar Baaje shehnai Lekhak ke Ghar soag.
Gayak sur Mein Kyon Kar Gaayein kyon Naa kaatein Ghaas
......     Bhaye kabir udhaas

Kal Tak Jo Tha Haal Hamaara Haal vahi Hai Aaj
Jalib Apnay Des Mein sukh ka kaal vahi hai aaaj
Phir bhi *Mochi Gate pe leader Roz karein Bakwaas
............Bhaye Kabir udhaas

( Autar Mota)

**** Mochi Gate in Lahore is a place where political Rallies were regularly held  .

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Shuja Sulta (1946-2008) was a  talented Artist  ,  Writer , poet , Broadcaster and above all a  wonderful  Human Being. He retired as Head Paintings Department of The e Institute of Music and Fine Arts of the J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages.

             ( Oil on Acrylic 1995..Shuja Sultan)

Shuja died  all of a sudden in    April 2008 of  a massive Heart attack. He was at  Jammu on that fateful day. He was   planning some Exhibition of his work.  He was painting  non stop for that proposed Exhibition.

No age to die  when he  had  just turned  63 ..

In 2013, Five years after his death, his family published his urdu poetic Collection "Khwaab-Zaar ( Garden of Dreams)..

I come  again and again to the innocence of the child that he has painted: Simply divine ..

Peace be to his soul...
( Autar Mota )

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Sunday, March 11, 2018




I have been told by many friends not to read firaq again and again.I ask why; To which i get following replies..

" In practical life, He was not a man of good moral Conduct. He had a fondness for Liquor even during his old age. ."

"His poetry is sensuous. He only praises feminine beauty. "

" He was labelled as Spoiled genius of India by Gandhi ji ."

" He was short tempered, arrogant and uncompromising "
" He was a Nehru Bhakt."

I ask friends if they have read Firaq; And i am told in affirmative.. I ask if they have read his collections like Gul e Nagma, Naghma e Saaz or Ramz o Kaaynaat or Dharti ki karwat.I am told the expected ,"NO". I ask if they have read his poems like 'Shaam e Ayaadat' (The
EvenIng of Her Visit), Aadhi Raat ( Midnight) , Jugnu (fireflies) ,Handola ( Cradle) or Taraaana e Khizaan ( The song of the Autumn) . I get the expected reply "NO". Most of them have not read his Gazal and poems but heard Begum Akhtar singing some Firaq Gazals .
So you are dismissing a stalwart ( who has written on culture, civilization, loneliness, Nature, Love, hope, separation, and so many aspects of life ) without reading him .

I have no business to focus on Firaq's temper or private life . And discussing the same will not help me in objective evaluation of his work. In creative human beings, you always find varied levels of eccentricities. Do you look to their eccentricities or to the creative standards they establish in Art or Literature?

I shall continue to read and discuss Firaq as a poet of eminence

Firaq worked closely with Gandhi ji and Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru during freedom struggle . He went to prison many times during freedom struggle of the country. He did not join ICS that he qualified. Gandhi ji had asked him to join Gujarat Vidyapeeth as professor but he refused . Pandit ji, Indira ji and Harivansh Rai Bachan held him in highest esteem.

About firaq's poetry i have to make some basic observations .These are...

(1) His love poetry is based on a truthful  response  to primary emotion.

(2) Firaq has enriched and indigenized his urdu assimilating so many words from Hindi, sanskrit and Braj Baasha. Words like komal, kaaran, Deepshikha, Agnikund, vish, Ang, Pawan, Mukh, Kumadni, Kanwal, Banvaas, roop, Singaar, Dukh, Sansaar,Amrit, Suhaagan, and many more have been frequently used by him in poems, Gazals and Rubais.

(3) Rubais in urdu were used by poets as tools of ethical or theoretical suggestions.  Firaq uses them to present images of feminine Beauty and grace. These images have been created or captured in the homely roles of a  woman  who happens to be a  mother, daughter, sister or wife.

(4) Through his Gazals, He has fully explored the emotional, physical and spiritual dimensions of Love as the fundamental emotion of a human being. . While expressing the same in his poetry ,  he gives it  his personal hue and  makeup .

(5) Along with hope, wait, sensuousness and other issues, there is a stream of sorrow that flows through his work . I would call it a sorrow of spiritualised helplessness; And this very aspect brings him very close to Mir Taqi Mir .And Firaq duly acknowledges greatness of Mir when he says' Gazal ka saaz uthaao Barri udaas hai Raat, Navaa e Mir sunaao Barri udaas hai Raat'..

(6) Firaq's study of religious scriptures of Hinduism, Islam and Christianity is profound..If he uses references from Ramayana and Mahabharata, he also makes revered mention of incidents related with Karbala and life of Prophet of Islam. Incidents related with Jesus Christ and Moses have been mentioned at so many places.For him every prophet has visited this earth to ameliorate human pain and suffering. That spectacular quality makes him a true and genuine humanist. I tend to use word humanist instead of Secular .

(7) Firaq's mind was free from inhibitions . He allowed a passage to every thought. Many critics have called his mind a highway or a thoroughfare. Reflexes from such free minds are unpredictable and quite often unexpected.
(8) Firaq had a great fascination for English literature. Who else except firaq could translate Homer, Virgil, Wordsworth, Hardy and Wallace Stevens into beautiful Urdu ?

(9) While descrbing midnight's pillared silence and moonlight set against his individual sorrow , loneliness and wait in poem Aadhi Raat , Firaq takes many turns in between to touch issues of Humanity at large; I mean issues like war, poverty , revolution etc.

.jidhar nigaah karein ek Ataah khaamoshi,
zameen se ta mah o anjum sukoot ke meenar,
khadaa hai ouss mein chup chaap harsingaar ka Peid,
Yeh chaandni hai ke umdaa huva hai Rus saagar,
Gulon ne chaadar e Shabnam se munh Lapeit Liya,
Labon pe so gayi kaliyon ki muskaraahat bhi,
Jagaa Raha hai koyee Aadhi raat ka jadoo
Ek Aadmi hai ke itna dukhi hai duniya mein ?

. And the turns in between are ..

 (a)…Na muflisi ho to kitni haseen hai duniya,

 (b)..Ab inquilab mein shaayad ziyaada deir nahin,

 (c)..Sipaah e roos hain ab kitni door Berlin se ..

( Aadhi Raat was Written around second world war.Russian troops are about to enter Berlin to defeat Nazi Germany )

So long so much. Next time more observations on his poetry.

Me khizaan bhi huun me bahaar bhi
Meri zindagi hai woh zindagi,
Ke misaal e Barg e Gule chaman
Jo gaahe kafan gaahe Pairhan....

( Firaq)

I am the autumn,
I am the spring,
Such a erratic life i lead,
Like the petals of a rose flower,
Now   for the coffin,
 Now  for the for the headdress..

{Autar Mota)

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Saturday, March 10, 2018


Zabt Keejiye to dil hai angaara
Aur Agar Roiiye to paaani hai...
(Firaq Gorakhpuri)



Josh Makihabadi..

"A bundle of contraries, a blend of glass and steel, now a garden breeze , now the desert blast; Now a holy guide , now the stray wanderer;Now the dew on the grape leaf, now the devastating flame ;now a herald of heaven , now a messenger of hell. He who does not accept Firaq's personality is crown on India's brow , the pride of Urdu language , and the sacred sandal mark of Urdu poetry, is by god, sadly deficient in sense and judgement "

Prof. Jagan Nath Azad..

" Firaq is surely a very good poet of GAZAL. But more than this , his mature lyrical accent is really captivating, and his attempt to introduce into Urdu poetry the elements of Hindu culture , convention and philosophy is equally admirable. Yet all this is not sufficient to rank him with great poets like Mir, Ghalib and Iqbal."

Dr  Gopi Chand Narang..

" For lovers of urdu , death of Firaq  is like the shattering of the Himalaya of poetry. He was , without doubt ,a very great poet , intelligent and perceptive, who has changed the very colour and complexion of urdu poetry."

Syed Ehteshaam Hussain..

" Firaq's poetry presents a .fine blend of thought and feelings"

 Intezaar Hussain..
" In the death of Firaq, Urdu has lost not only an individual but a kingdom.He contained within him an empire of wisdom and perception , and a wide range of creative experiences."

Ali Sardar Jafri .

"  Basically he is a poet of sensuous  beauty ,an adept in depicting the psychological states of a lover .He has an authentic , individual voice , and a delightful way of using the language"

Prof. Mamtaz Hussain..
“ After Ghalib , Firaq seems to be the only poet who will be valued not for poetry , But also for his Conversational Brilliance and witticism His Poetry , though , a forest , and not a neatly trimmed garden of verse , But it is a forest where tall trees seem to rub their branches against the holy tree of Paradise .”

Majnun Gorakhpuri ..

“ en of such sterling worth and perfection as Firaq are rarely born on this earth, Firaq’s tremperment is essentially lyrical, And he is preeminently a poet of Ghazal.He is the master of Modern Ghazal and the best role model for the younger generation of Ghazal writers in the first half of the century ”

Ismat Chugtai ..

“ Firaq was a Treasure of knowledge and wisdom .”

Prof. Ale Ahmed Suroor ..

“Firaq can be described as a poet of spiritualized  sensuousness, one who can make us hear the music of the soul in the lines and curves of physical form.”

Suuntay hain ishq naam ke guzrein hain ek buzurag,
Hum log bhi faqueer issi silsilay ke hain
( Firaq)
We hear, there once lived , a revered elder :Love,
We too have descended from the same saintly clan.

(Autar Mota)

Source..Firaq Gorakhpuri ..Selected Poetry .By KC Kanda
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