CHUGHTAI ART IN EMBROIDERY AS FASHION
BASIC LISTING OF EMBROIDERS IN PAKISTAN
Chughtai Art has been used variously in time. Pitras Bokhari had fire shades made by the artist for his fire place. Done on silk cloth but painted on same. A letter exists about same. Jewelers have taken inspiration from Chughtai Art and his designs of jewelry. There was a cinema in Karachi as well as a cinema in Delhi which had paintings from the book Murraqqa e Chughtai done on the walls of the cinema hall in huge proportions. We saw them ourselves. That was the time when in cinema halls shows used to be started with documentaries on Chughtai Art. Made by Information Department, it had his interview too. People were familiar with the artist.
Embroidery caught up too. Chughtai Art on cushions as well as dresses. The pioneer was Fatima Bai of Salika Sewing Machines, which made long stitch possible on the machine itself. The singer Malika Pukhraj was very fond of embroidery and had done complete paintings of Chughtai from the Murraqqa in stitch. She showed one of the work on PTV, namely Desert in Bloom. But this did not Stop with her. Sajida Hanif Abbasi (now sick with cancer) also made paintings from Amal e Chughtai as embroidery.
Even today one can find embroidered cushions of Chughtai Art on the International market. Neelofar Shahid did a show on Chughtai, as well as Maria B who took inspiration from Chughtai Art. A student from Dallas Texas, Fawad Khalid Hamza wanted to print Chughtai Art on T Shirts. There is a mrket out there for Chughtai Art products, and unfortunately we do not have capacity to undertake it. Perhaps one day we will enter this sector and make Chughtai Art a household word in the world.
DEAF, DUMB AND BLIND, HELEN KELLER SURVIVED IT ALL
THE VISIT OF HELEN KELLER TO LAHORE IN THE YEAR 1955
Helen Keller is the stuff of legends. An international icon, she showed the world optimism in everything she did in life. Presidents met her with humility. She carried an air of hope everywhere. Much traveled, she even came to Lahore. Addressed a Press Conference, which was reported on 15th May, 1955. The city of Lahore welcomed this stalwart with open minds and hearts and she left a deep impression behind. Full of laughter, one could hardly find her in a different mood. She overcame her disabilities, and she poured her hope all over the world.
One can learn a lot from her. A documentary was screened by the USIS here, entitled THE HELEN KELLER STORY and we indeed saw it ourselves. From where her energy came, one does not know, but that energy she passed on to the world. With an age of 88 years, she really was outstanding in her achievements. These are the Americans who made America, America. Legends which impressed the world.
Even today her name is taken in Pakistan with respect. Events are held in her name. United the world, and never sowed discord in life.
MUHAMMED KHAN A FORGOTTEN HERO MARTYR OF WORLD WAR ONE
DEBRIS OF A HOUSE IN LAHORE REVEALS MEDAL SENT BY KING GEORGE
The Britishers used the Indian Army in their fights in World War one in 1915. We do now that a lot of soldiers went from Punjab to France at that time. Villages in Punjab boast of soldiers sent to fight the British cause. In the area of Pakistan, Chakwal is famous for contributing such brave men to the mission. It is also known that people from Lahore also went to France and are acknowledged by plaques in those fields of Europe. Of the many people martyred there, King George sent a letter of condolence to the family of the dead soldier.
A recently demolished house in Lahore turned out a forgotten medal in its debris. The man MUHAMMED KHAN FROM LAHORE died in the British service in World War one. To commemorate his death, King George sent a BRONZE MEDAL highlighting that HE DIED FOR FREEDOM AND HONOUR. The letter obviously is missing. Who was Muhammed Khan? We do not know but this we know that the urban city of Lahore did produce brave men in those times too and they fought on the battle field of Europe, and scarcely remembered by any one. There is knack of history that it enfolds itself sooner or later. Obviously the man must have belonged to the Punjab Regiment, and that regiment is active to this day in the Pakistan Army.
AN UNKNOWN TURKISH SULTANATE PRINCESS OF LAHORE
IS SHE SISTER OF AYAZ WHO MARRIED SULTAN MAHMUD?
Personalities and events are not normally remembered in time. A forgotten world surround us all the time. But memories leave fingerprints here and there, and these are the fingerprints of time itself. Figurines of Lahore is a virgin topic, left unexplored, and juicy with details of the past. Deep down Lahore’s earth are memories of time gone by, and little to remember that time itself.
A face occurs here and there in full splendour of some Princess, some Queen, who the people of Lahore cherished, and put figurines of her in their homes. Twenty five to thirty feet means the Ghaznavid period in Lahore, or even the times of Qutub uddin Aibeg (Aibek). Or even later. History recalls a SHER DE BACHI, who was a sister of Malik Ayaz, the Governor of Lahore, who the Sultan loved very much. That is Sultan Mahmud Ghaznavi. It is not known whether the marriage took place or not, but Sultan himself asked his courtiers for their opinion about the prospects of that marriage. The rest is smoke of history. In any case enjoy a Lahori Princess of the past with her enigmatic Turkish cap. And imagine her days of splendour.
The soil of Lahore reveals us the past all the time.
INDEPENDENCE DAY OF PAKISTAN 14TH AUGUST, 1947
THE CONFUSION OF 15TH AUGUST AS POSSIBLE DATE
No one bothers to clear history of Pakistan. A deliberate confusion is generated by vested interests about the date of independence of Pakistan. Very few would know the way of seeking the truth. The first independence day of Pakistan was celebrated on 15th August, 1948. There is valid reason for same and we have a commemorative postal stamp (First stamp designed by M.A. Rahman Chughtai) that was issued on same date. It was realized by Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan that this confusion had to go. Jut like the Two nation theory, the same day of Independence would not work in the long run. It was found that exactly at 12 pm Independence for Pakistan was announced and that would make it 14th August, 1947. Independence for India was announced five minutes later at 00.05 am. It was decided to commemorate Pakistan Day on 14th August each year, while India would retain its India Day on 15th August for the future. All this is on record. The 2nd Independence day was on 14th August, 1949. It is found in older Pakistani guide books published officially but no stress is given to it now. Now you know!
GOD MADE THE COUNTRY AND MAN MADE THE TOWN
A PROPOSAL OF CELEBRATING PAINDO DAY: HA HA HA
Pakistan is embroiled in actual warfare with our enemy. On the other hand the Ideological warfare is on at the same time. There have been many funny movements in the past but the latest is indeed so funny as to give a fit of laughter all the time. All our life we heard the word PIND and that meant village, and we heard the word PAINDO and that meant inhabitant of a village. No degradation here. They are honourable hard working people and deserve to be treated with respect by all. That is egalitarianism. We believe in that. But their culture is not only basic, it is also vulgar in many contexts. Remember when your Aunt used to sniff at the shopkeeper in Anarkali by saying Paindo Rang (colours). God made the country but God also made man. And God entrusted man with moving forward in civilization. Achieving pinnacles of things. No status quo anywhere. Culture stopped in Pind ages ago.
All branches of knowledge have to have a start and epitome. Similarly other facets of culture. A rustic song is entertaining but a Tan Sen it will never be. You cannot expect Beethoven to be found in any village and even so, Beethovens are one of a kind. There are no higher thoughts expressed in Rustic songs. Similarly no aesthetics derived from simple colours and lines. Every facet of civilization has to have an USTAD or a MASTER at the top. That Ustad defines the civilization of that facet of culture. Even in his wildest imagination a Paindo cannot understand the sophistication of colours as used in Chughtai Art. Ideological warfare is meant to erase our superiority in anything. Everything mundane about us.
A stone is thrown in an environment and its gradually picks up that environment and becomes cultured with that surroundings. But Ideology is not that of a stone. The living organism that is HUMANKIND has been conditioned with ideas not merely of surroundings but the very IDEA OF EXISTENCE as defined by the LAWS OF ALLAH. We are an extension of the Laws of Allah, whether we actively accept them or not. We are nature bound to react to existence. Our Ideology is to move toward perfection in every sphere of life. Pakistan is an Ideological State and it sends fit of volcanic eruptions on those who oppose us. Suffice heritage of things is different from heritage of ideas. When people started moving at partition leaving homes and luxury behind, it was not meant to seek better things alone. They were moving with an Idea of a State, and that was the Idea of Pakistan.
The idea of Pakistan prevails and will prevail. No warfare, actual or Ideological can erase that from our existence. Foreign lobbies are seemingly so much worried about us that they are always giving us directions. Going back to village is keep us down forever. Our direction is Paradise, not Hell in any way.
ARE THERE SONIC BOOMS OVER PAKISTAN
UNNATURAL RATS UPRISING SUGGESTS SO
We have hear of Sonic booms with inaudible weapons in Cuba, but abnormal rat activity in Pakistan suggests some sort of sonic issues in Pakistan too. For instance a newspaper reports:
Earlier this month the U.S. State Department disclosed that several Havana-based diplomats have experienced “incidents which have caused a variety of physical symptoms.” Secretary Rex Tillerson said the incidents began last fall, calling them “health attacks.”
They were not the good kind of health attacks. Symptoms have included severe hearing loss, headaches, and problems with balance—forcing some diplomats to return to the United States. “We hold the Cuban authorities responsible for finding out who is carrying out these health attacks,” Tillerson said.
His remarks came after a search for the cause of the symptoms—also reported among Canadian diplomats living in Cuban housing—led some U.S. officials to conclude that the weapon is inaudible sonic waves.
A word about Sonic weapons:
Sonic and ultrasonic weapons (USW) are weapons of various types that use sound to injure, incapacitate, or kill an opponent. Some sonic weapons are currently in limited use or in research and development by military and police forces. Some of these weapons have been described as sonic bullets, sonic grenades, sonic mines, or sonic cannons. Some make a focused beam of sound or ultrasound; some make an area field of sound.
Some time back there were reports of unusual RAT activity in Peshawer, and a bounty was issued for any rat killed by people. Children flocked the municipality with killed rats. A device is available in the West, which you embed in soil and the field is evacuated of all rats. Inaudible to our ears, the rats cannot accept that in their life. An unusual rat activity is also seen in Lahore. Hordes of rats are common these days, disturbed from their natural habitats by sonic booms.
But we are not alone. It is reported that millions of rats have invaded London too. You can find these reports in leading newspapers. Habitats are disturbed and animals are shifting grounds. But how much is natural, and how much contrived? One does not know. But it is indeed a RAW deal for us.