Monday, April 9, 2012

Wahab Khar- ath kathe chhu Waheb Khar te lajawabe


There is an old Kashmiri adage, 'Ath kathe chhu Wahab Khar te lajawabe'- which is a fitting tribute to the wisdom of this 19th century poet. Wahab Khar, born in Pulwama, was a blacksmith by proffesion. Though being illiterate Wahab Khar rose to become one of the fabled mystic poets of Kashmir. His 'Mehraj Namma' and 'Mach Tuler' are regarded as works of occult mysticism with references.

Wahab Khar used to meander in the wastarwan jungles of Khrew, raising esoteric villanelle poems.

Beha chas dramich Yaras pattey
sou kas pattey goum
mei ha ley ous vechaan vattey
sou kas pattey goum.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Memorable India- Pakistan matches

While recalling memorable Indo-Pak matches the first one that comes immediately to my mind is the '94 Austral-Asia Cup final played at Sharjah. Matches played on friday on this desert oasis Sharjah ground had reached cult status- some subscribed it to divine interventions; come what may India was found hopping always; the Sharjah-friday- Pakistan trio gave them blushes and humiliation profound. On this sunny April day as I remember Pakistan captain Salim Malik chose to bat first.

Those were the days of rickety Tv antennas- we had ours broken due to heavy snowfall in the preceding winter. This was an auspicious game. Not one's to be cowed down I hopped on my cousins 'Hamara' Bajaj scooter and we were on the way to our cousin sister's place. Now here was a family who were stuanch Indian supporters. They swore on Sheikhs and Nehrus. We on the contrary were the quintessential Khanyari's: bleeding Green.

Saeed Anwar and Aamir Sohail, as they used to do often, gave Pakistan a solid start. Consolidated and improved by Basit Ali- whose uncanny resemblance to Javed Miandad was growing by day. Pakistan scored 250 at the end- a difficult target to chase against a strong bowling unit.

India was never in the running except for that small period when Kambli and Atul Bedade were going smooth. But once both had gone, the fate of the match was sealed. Bleak faces of our Indian relatives was an eye soother, every wicket brought a louder cheer from us; and strong resentment from them. Who cared but! We chose to ignore animosity and their host status. And when a round the wicket Wasim got V Prasad plumb in front, the joys were given shape in dancing- even as the hamam rocks shook beneath.

Joyous on our way back, with nadir monje stacked aplenty, the sad news of a young neighbor being killed upon celebrating Pakistan's win by angry Indian troops spread a squall of loom all over. The skies were red and green- that April day!