History Pakistan - PARTITION - 14 August 1947
An interesting compilation by a fellow flickr photographer and friend who goes by Fiction Dreamer
~ PARTITION - 14 August 1947, over 10 million people were uprooted from their homeland and travelled on foot, bullock carts and trains to their new home, the newly-created country called Pakistan, the land of the pure. This was the largest mass migration known in world history.
This Punjabi poem, by the wonderful Amrita Pritam, is mournful and spine-chilling; it speaks of the destruction of the beautiful Punjabi landscape in the horrific scenes of the Partition of India, particularly destructive to the Punjab state, which was cut to pieces, one half remained in India the other formed part of the new country Pakistan. In the Punjab to this day, the Partition is still referred to as batwaara, literally, torn apart. The poem references the classic love story composed by Waris Shah, Heer Ranjha.
I really liked how they used it in the Indian film, Pinjar (it has become one of my favourite films), produced from a short story by Amrita Pritam, and would urge everyone to watch it!
And hearing it recited in her own voice always gives me goose-bumps:
'Ajj aakhaan Waris Shah nu,
kithon kabraan wichon bol,
Te ajj kitaab-e ishq da
koi aglaa varkaa phol.
Ik roi si dhee Punjab di,
tuun likh likh maare vain,
Ajj lakhaan dheeyaan rondiyaan,
tainun Waris Shah nu kahn
Uthh dardmandaan dia dardia -
uthh takk apna Punjab
Ajj beile lashaan bichhiyaan
te lahu di bhari Chenab
Kise ne panjaan paaniyaan vich ditti zahar ralaa
te unhaan paniyaan dharati nuun dittaa pani laa
Is zarkhez zameen de luun luun phuttia zahr
gitth gitth charhiyaan laalian fuut fuut charhiaa kahr
veh vallissi hwa pher, van van vaggi jaa.
Ohne har ik vans di vanjhali ditti naag banaa
pehlaa dang madaariyaan, mantar gaye guwaach,
Dooje dang di lagg gayii,
jane khane nu laag laagaan kiile lok munh,
bus phir dang hi dang, palo pali Punjab de.
Neele pae gaye ang galeyon tutte geet phir,
takaleon tutti tand, trinjanon tuttiyaan saheliyaan,
charakhrre ghuukar band sane seij de beriyaan,
luddan dittiyaan rohr, sane daliyaan peengh aj,
piplaan ditti tor.
Jitthe vajdi si phuuk pyaar di,
ve oh vanjhali gayi guwaach,
Raanjhe de sab veer aaj,
bhul gaye uhadi jaach.
Dharti te lahoo varsiyaa,
kabraan paiyaan choaon, preet diyaan shaahzaadiaan,
Ajj vichch mazaaraan roan aaj sabbhe Qaido ban gaye,
Husn ishq de chor aaj kitthon liaaiye labbh ke Waris Shah ik hor...
Ajj aakhaan Waris Shah nu,
kithon kabraan wichon bol,
Te ajj kitaab-e ishq daa, koi aglaa varkaa phol...
~ Amrita Pritam
'I call out to Waris Shah today
To speak out from the grave
And open another leaf
From the book of love
When once a daughter of
Punjab had wept
You wrote a million dirges;
Today a million daughters are weeping
And they are looking to you,
Waris Shah, for solace...'
'I call upon Waris Shah today: speak from your grave
And add a new page to your book of love
Once, one daughter of Punjab wept, and you wrote your long saga;
Today, thousands weep, calling to you Waris Shah:
Arise, o friend of the afflicted; arise and see the state of Punjab,
Corpses strewn on fields, and the Chenab flowing with much blood.
Someone filled the five rivers with poison,
And this same water now irrigates our soil.
Where was lost the flute, where the songs of love sounded?
And all Ranjha’s brothers forgotten to play the flute.
Blood has rained on the soil, graves are oozing with blood,
The princesses of love cry their hearts out in the graveyards.
Today all the Kaidos have become the thieves of love and beauty,
Where can we find another one like Waris Shah?
Waris Shah! I say to you, speak from your grave
And add a new page to your book of love.'
(Translated by Darshan Singh Maini, Studies in Punjabi Poetry)
over 10 million people were uprooted from their homeland and travelled on foot, bullock carts and trains to their new home, the newly-created country called Pakistan, the land of the pure
~ Muslim refugees travelling towards their newly-created homeland of Pakistan; note the new flag of the fledgling country
~ train to Pakistan
[All images courtesy TIME magazine by photographer Margaret Bourke-White,
published in 1947]
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Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan