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Archive for November, 2017

IQBAL – THE EMINENT POET OF URDU LITERATURE By Inayet Ullah

IQBAL – THE EMINENT POET OF URDU LITERATURE

by

Inayet Ullah

 

 

Something blissful happened in the year 1877 that witnessed the birth of a great poet-philosopher named Muhammed Iqbal who is thriving as a shining star on the horizon of Urdu Literature.

It is impossible, in this article, to make an assessment which encompasses fully all aspects and qualities of Iqbal’s poetry and his greatness. It is just a meager attempt to broadly highlight the salient features of his Urdu poetical works.

Iqbal’s poetry makes a distinctive deviation in the subject matter of Urdu poetry. Before Iqbal, the subject matter of Urdu poetry of most of his predecessors was “woman” and her physical beauty. Although, poetry is actually the expression of observations and experiences of a poet in life, and the subject matter can be anything in the world. In Iqbal’s own words “Shaair-e-hind ke asaab pe aurat hai savar.

In order to understand and appreciate Iqbal’s poetry, and for that matter the poetry of any major poet, it is necessary to have a knowledge of religious, social and cultural background as well as his thoughts, philosophies and the ideals he believed in.

The most recurring theme in Iqbal’s poetry is “Ishq” and the comparison of Ishq and Aql. Iqbal uses “Ishq” in a special sense of his own. In his poetry “Ishq” is a unique and exclusive feeling, devoid of reason or Aql which drives one to great achievements. A task performed with the feeling of “Ishq”, when completed, is a unique achievement and its beauty and form transcends time and becomes immortal. Masjid-e-Qartaba, which perhaps is his masterpiece, amply depicts his idea of “Ishq”. When he visited the mosque in Spain he was overwhelmed by its beauty, form and craftsmanship that prompted him to create a great work of art.

“Ishq” also enables you to face a gigantic and seemingly impossible task and drives you to make an impulsive and fearless decision:

Be khatar kood para aatishenamrood mein ishq                                                                     Aql hai mahve tamasha-e-labe baam abhi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A part of Iqbal’s poetry is a remarkably explicit poetical interpretation of the verses of Holy Quran, the eloquence, and the impact of poetical interpretation on the reader is deep. The Quran’s language itself, which without a doubt is the word of God, is highly literary wherein literary techniques like simile, metaphor, allegory, parable, and symbolism have been used that effectively impresses the mind of the reader. The spirit of Islamic teachings, contained in the Quranic verses, are beautifully revealed in some of his following lines:

Na bacha bacha ke tu rakh ise tera aaina hai wo aaina                                                             ke shikasta ho to Aziz ter hai nigah-e-aaina saz mein

(Do not try to protect your “aaina” (heart), because when broken, its dearer in the eyes of God).

Kafir ki ye pehchan ke aafaq mein hai gum                                                                

Momin ki ye pehchan ke gum is mein hai aafaq

Shauq agar na ho meri namaz ka imam                                                                                    mere qayam bhi hijab, mere sujood bhi hijab

Another aspect of Iqbal’s poetry is optimism which is depicted in some of his following lines:

Tu hi naadaan chand kalyun per qanaat kar gaya                                                                verna gulshan mein elaj-e-tangiye damaan bhi hai

Zara nam ho to ye mitti bahut zarkhez hai saqi                                                                        (If it follows the right path the Muslim umma has a great potential).

Man is great – a significant feature of Iqbal’s poetry. The potential integrity of character and the inherent self-pride is manifested in his various verses, like:

Tu shab aafridi, chiragh aafridum                                                                                               (You (God) created night, I created lamp

Jachte nahin bakhshe hue firdaus nazar mein                                                                   Jannat meri pinhaan hai mere khoon-e-jigar mein.

Baaghe Bahisht se mujhe hukme safar diya tha kyun                                                           Kar-e-Jahan daraz hai ab mera intezar kar

A typical example of man’s self-pride is his poem: “Rooh-e-Arzi Adam ka isteqbal karti hai”. The following grand and dramatic opening lines are relative to the theme:

Khole aankh zamin dekh falak dekh fiza dekh                                                                 Mashriq se ubherta hue sooraj ko zara dekh

When man was expelled from paradise to the earth for disobedience, he (with Eve) had to toil for his living. The desolate earth lay before him, yet he was ready to face all the hardships and challenges to create a new world of his own:

Theen pesh-e-nazar kal to farishton ki adain

Aaina-e-ayyam mein aj aapni ada dekh

Iqbal is no more with us but his poetry continues to be a source of sunshine in our life.

Raftaid vale na az dil-e-maa

(You departed but not from our heart)

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Jeopardize OBOR by Asad Khan Betini

Jeopardize OBOR

Asad Khan Betini

 

China’s one belt one road (OBOR) is changing the world order since it is leading China to influence the western European market. Chinese liberal policy in terms of trade is being viewed as a windfall while CPEC being part of it is the foundation milestone of the project. China is Pakistan’s time-tested friend and has always backed Pakistan economically and logistically despite Islamabad’s cuddling with Washington. Sino-Pak friendship is a firm knot which can’t be unlocked but yet it seems that conspiracies have amplified to imbalance Sino-Pak relations and may endanger the grant. India has recently put proposals before China to reconsider Bangladesh, China, India, and Myanmar (BCIM) as an alternate corridor. India has also resorted to developing Chabahar and Abbass ports to improve trade with Iran and Afghanistan. India’s participation in developing Iran’s Chabahar port with an investment of $85.21 million is being viewed as dominant role in South Asia. Dehli’s investment in Chabahar port will definitely permit India to access & control the Strait of Hormuz that will even provide Israel an access to the Strait of Hormuz for the reason that India is Israel’s time-test friend.  

 

 

 

 

 

On the other hand, India has raised concerns over growing militant hideouts in Pakistan, India is also proposing China to unleash Pakistan’s secret support to militants that are threatening the regional security and stability, even BRICS summit was predisposed by India to speak on Islamabad’s role on terrorism that brought China to play part for Indian bogey.

Accordingly, India has made reservations that East Turkistan Islamic Party (ECIP) is becoming threat to Chinese projects in deep state with sanctuaries in Tribal areas of Pakistan, but all these claims are yet unacceptable to China since Indo-US and Israel’s nexus is getting stronger and India has been identified as the largest recipient of U.S economic assistance.US may endanger the track of China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) once India gains its access and control Chabahar port.

India aspired to play a more dominant role in South Asia and it is openly believed that India intensified its attacks through proxy militants in Pakistani resource-rich province “Balochistan” and yet engaged in destruction activities, target killings, bomb blasts in Balochistan but security apparatus in Baluchistan has failed to counter terrorism. 

 

 

 

 

 

This is not a portent anymore rather a fact, Kulbhoshan Jadhav has claimed all responsibilities for the operations carried out in Pakistani mineral-rich province yet Indo-US plans are to reinvigorate Free Balochistan Movement through fundraising campaigns abroad which are deeply seen as a threat to the existence of Pakistan. It may knock Pakistan’s nuclear doctrine to save its self from foreign aggression, China strongly backs Pakistan in a bid to protect its OBOR’s objectives.

Indo-Us fulcrum is seen as a threat by China since the US is concerned with Chinese liberal influence in the Western Europe. China is softly influencing the international market, particularly developing countries are now getting loans from Chinese International Investment bank (CIIB) rather than World Bank or IMF.

The world order is slowly spinning and CPEC is becoming game changer project in the region. Pakistan needs to promote its education sector, enhance security apparatus and ensure development, friendship, and peace with the neighboring countries for the long term to make it more successful. Pakistan needs to promote Islamic coalition bloc and must arbitrate between Saudi and Iran for détente, even Chinese foreign direct investments can fulfill the needs of Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, so Pakistan must step forward to integrate Muslim brotherhood.

The Writer is Balochistan Based Freelance Journalist – He can be reached at asdprg@gmail.com

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 Refocus on Salala Attack By Sajjad Shaukat

 Refocus on Salala Attack

By Sajjad Shaukat

On 26th of November 2011, the US-led NATO forces attacked two Pakistani check-posts on Pak-Afghan border and martyred 24 Pakistani military personnel indiscriminately.

In this regard, two American Apache helicopters and two F-15 Eagle fighter jets targeted the two Pakistani posts, Boulder and Volcano, situated at Salala in the Baizai tehsil of Mohmand Agency. The airstrike was carried out in two phases.

Notably, the aerial attack was coordinated and deliberate, its second phase carried out by American forces after the Pakistan Army informed the ISAF command that their forces were attacking Pakistani troops–and despite this information, it continued.

In this context, a NATO inquiry said that both sides had made mistakes. Pakistan categorically rejected the inquiry report. It had earlier refused to be part of a joint inquiry. Top Pakistan Army officials denied the attack was unintentional.

Reacting to the Salala attack, Pakistan blocked the NATO ground lines of communication to Afghanistan and demanded an apology before the supply line would be unblocked.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pakistan’s parliament unanimously approved recommendations of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PCNS) in connection with the re-engagement with the United States. Besides other matters, the recommendations included an immediate cessation of drone attacks and infiltration into Pakistani territory, entailing some conditions regarding supply to NATO forces in Afghanistan across the country. Besides, Pakistan should seek an unconditional apology from the US on November 26, 2011, unprovoked Salala check-posts assault.

Meanwhile, some American diplomats including NATO chief had visited Islamabad and met the then Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and Chief of Army Staff Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, asking them for re-opening the NATO routes. Setting aside the American pressure, they reiterated that parliament in light of the PCNS recommendations and the Defence Committee of Cabinet would decide on the issue of NATO supply, after negotiating a new relationship with the US, based upon equality and non-violation of Pakistani territory.

Pakistan government remained firm on its stand. The NATO supply lines remained suspended for the six months in the wake of US pressure tactics.  On May 10, 2012, the United States House Armed Services Committee approved a bill, which would prohibit the preferential procurement of goods or services from Pakistan; until the “NATO supply line is reopened.”

Meanwhile, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen suggested on May 11, 2012, that Pakistan could miss out on important talks on the future of Afghanistan, if it failed to reopen supply routes in time to secure a place at a NATO summit in Chicago on May 20-21, 2012. Indirectly, he disclosed that Pakistan would not be invited to participate in the summit.

On the other side, Prime Minister Gilani confirmed that the Defence Committee of the Cabinet would debate as to how to repair relations with America in time to attend the NATO summit in Chicago or to boycott it. While, the British Defence Minister Phillip Hamond stated that negotiations on the restoration of the NATO supply are progressing in the right direction, but Pakistan would not accept any pre-condition.

In these terms, Pak-US war of nerves accelerated due to American coercive diplomacy towards Islamabad coupled with its double game. In this regard, after the 9/11 tragedy, Pakistan joined the US war against terrorism as frontline state and Islamabad was granted the status of a non-NATO ally by Washington because of its earlier successes achieved by Pakistan’s Army and country’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) against the Al-Qaeda militants.

Within a few years, when the US-led NATO forces felt that they were failing in coping with the stiff resistance of the Taliban in Afghanistan, they started false allegations against Pak Army and ISI of supporting the Afghan Taliban. US high officials and their media not only blamed Pakistan for cross-border terrorism in Afghanistan but also continuously emphasised to ‘do more’ against the insurgents in tribal areas by ignoring the internal backlash in the country such as bomb blasts and suicide attacks which killed thousands of innocent people and personnel of the security.

The Cold War had already started between Pakistan and the United States when hundreds of CIA agents entered Pakistan under the guise of diplomats to destabilise the country. On January 11, 2011, Raymond Davis who was CIA agent killed two Pakistanis in Lahore.

Since May 2, 2011, Pak-US relations further deteriorated when without informing Islamabad, US commandos killed Osama Bin Laden in a covert military operation. Afterwards, tension intensified, as America continued its duress on Pakistan in the wake of drone attacks on FATA, while brushing aside parliament’s resolution in this respect.

Differences also increased between Islamabad and Washington, because of Pakistan’s superior agency, ISI interrupted covert activities of the so-called American diplomats. Notably, ISI thwarted the anti-Pakistan activities of the agents of Blackwater and CIA which had started recruiting Pakistani nationals who were vulnerable. In this connection, with the pre-information of ISI, Pakistan’s police and other security agencies arrested some secret agents. On many occasions, ISI helped in stopping the clandestine activities of the CIA spies who were displaying themselves as diplomats. On the information of this top spy agency, Pakistan’s establishment expelled several American spies operating in the country. On the other side, US withheld $800 million in military aid to punish its army and ISI.

It was due to the professional competence of ISI in foiling the anti-Pakistan plot that US and India including their media accelerated deliberate propaganda against ISI.

Nevertheless, in the aftermath of the November 26 incident in Mohmand Agency, Pakistan’s bold steps such as vacation of the Shamsi Airbase, boycott the second Bonn Conference and rejection of the US investigation report regarding the deliberate attack on Salala Army check-posts accelerated tension between Islamabad and Washington.

Some top American officials accused Pakistan-based Haqqani militants behind the well-coordinated attacks in Afghanistan, which occurred on April 15, 2012. US aim was to pressurise Islamabad for the restoration of the NATO transit routes.

At this juncture, it is worth mention that US government officials are confused about their goals and objectives. Rarely US high officials praised Pak sacrifices in the war on terror, sometimes, admitted that stability is not possible could in Afghanistan without the help of Pakistan.  After the withdrawal of foreign troops, sometimes, threatened Islamabad to abandon the Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline project and sometimes, realised that the US wants to improve its relationship with Pakistan, but at the same time, they blame Islamabad for safe-havens of militants in the country. While in connivance with India and Israel, America has been continuing its anti-Pakistan activities by supporting militancy in Pakistan and separatism in Balochistan.

Nonetheless, after the Salala incident, Pak-US war of nerves continued, it took the relationship of both the countries to the point of no return. On July 3, 2012, Defence Committee of the Cabinet permitted NATO supplies across the country to Afghanistan after the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton apologised for the killing of 24 Pakistani soldiers in November 2011 by American air strike on Salala check posts by saying “sorry”.

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: The US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

Email: sajjad_logic@yahoo.com

 

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MPs to demand answers from Boris Johnson on torture by Indian police of 30-year old Scot that has the potential to re-set UK-India relations

MPs to demand answers from Boris Johnson on torture by Indian police of 30-year old Scot that has the potential to re-set UK-India relations

London – 19 November 2017

#FreeJaggi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The mistreatment and torture by the Indian authorities of 30-year old Scot, Jagtar Singh Johal from Dumbarton is likely to cause a major headache for Boris Johnson and the UK Government this week.

Jagtar abducted by the Indian police more than two weeks ago on 4 November remains in police custody without charge and has alleged third-degree torture.  Remarkably, First Information Report (FIR) 193 that was used to make the initial arrest and now FIR 218 used by Ludhiana police both fail to name Jagtar.

The #FreeJaggi Now campaign within a week has gone global with Sikhs throughout the diaspora raising concerns and gaining support from leading politicians and personalities in the UK, Canada and opposition politicians in Punjab.

Ruling politicians and senior police officers in Punjab under pressure to address unresolved crimes have opted for media hype to try and declare Jagtar guilty by making wild accusations linking him to crimes without producing any evidence that would stand up in court.

On Tuesday Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary will be answering questions for one hour in the House of Commons.  Over 200 MPs have been approached by constituents so he is expected to get a rough ride and will need answers to satisfy their concerns.

Bhai Narinderjit Singh, the General Secretary of the Sikh Federation (UK) said:

“Following the letter writing to MPs last week we have organised a mass lobby in Parliament for Tuesday and constituents will be demanding answers from their MPs on actions taken by the Foreign Office.  They will want to know how much pressure has been put on India to assist in securing the release of the British national.”

“Specifically what steps have been taken to ensure Jagtar has had free access to discuss his situation with British High Commission staff without the presence of police officers that have been responsible for his torture.”

“Given the allegations of third-degree torture that the Foreign Office has stated it takes very seriously MPs will also want to know what efforts have been made by the British authorities to secure an independent medical examination to confirm the severity of his torture.”

“Unless Jagtar is immediately returned to the UK we will ensure this becomes a watershed case that will call into question the entire relationship of Britain with India going forward.  Both countries have much to lose as we will make sure MPs on all sides expose the atrocities in India..”   

It is widely known that for far too long Britain’s chequered colonial past in the Indian sub-continent and trade between Britain and India has been knowingly used by the Indian authorities to avoid virtually all public criticism by the UK Government of widespread human rights violations targeting minorities in India.  

When it comes to India, Britain must strike the right balance between promoting British trade and other interests abroad and human rights.  This case is too close to home and high profile that it may break the camel’s back unless India can be persuaded to immediately return Jagtar to the UK and allow the UK authorities to investigate if any crime has been committed.

The twists and turns in the last 72 hours in India against a law-abiding British citizen beggar believe for those closely observing the situation and complicated what Boris Johnson will have to say.

On Friday afternoon the decision to take Jagtar out of police custody and enter judicial custody until 30 November came as a huge sigh of relief for his family, lawyers, Sikhs across the globe and the UK authorities. 

Many knew judicial custody would bring an end to his physical torture at the hands of the police, although the mental torture of being held in prison without charge would continue along with trial by media statements preventing any possibility of a fair trial.

However, the relief was short-lived as a further twist came on Friday evening when the police visited a magistrate at home in a different district and persuaded him to allow them to keep Jagtar in police custody for a further two days by introducing an additional case. 

This morning to Jagtar’s dismay the police custody was extended by another five days.  The threat of brutal police torture, therefore, remains high and hanging over Jagtar’s head.

There are concerns that the police will continue to extend remand and add false and previously decided additional cases that make no sense to prolong Jagtar’s detention.

For the first ten days, Jagtar had no access to his lawyers, his family or a representative from the British High Commission.  As soon as he met his lawyer he gave details of how his legs were forcibly stretched beyond limits and electric shocks had been applied to his nipples, ears and private parts.

On Friday Jagtar Singh was not allowed by the police to have the business cards for his lawyers and the British High Commission as they clearly had other plans for him.  Today the police objected to his lawyer having access for one hour a day to meet Jagtar, although thankfully the magistrate dismissed the police objections given the high profile nature of this case.   

On Tuesday Boris Johnson cannot afford another botched case like Zaghari-Radcliffe and will need to have something positive to say regarding the return of Jagtar to the UK.

 
 

Gurjeet Singh
National Press Secretary
Sikh Federation (UK)

 
www.sikhfeduk.com |sikhfederationuk@yahoo.co.uk | facebook.com/Sikh Federation UK | twitter @Sikhfeduk

 

 

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Nawaz Sharif and the Supreme Court by Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)

LETTER TO EDITOR

November 19th, 2017

Nawaz Sharif and the Supreme Court

 

In spite of the somewhat detailed order by the Supreme Court on the Review Petition of the Sharif family, ex-PM Nawaz Sharif keeps haranguing and sarcastically too in his public addresses and other utterances that he was disqualified for his aqama and not getting the salary from his son.

Does it all not raise questions and doubts in the mind of the public about the impartiality and fair justice of the epic court?  And does it not tantamount to be the Contempt of Court?  Is it not time that the SCP took notice of it and redeemed its image which is being tarnished?

Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)
30 Westridge 1
Rawalpindi 46000
Pakistan

E.mail: jafri@rifiela.com

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