Just enjoy a small range of dust cover designs by M.A. Rahman Chughtai. Elite Urdu writers requested Chughtai for such designs, but Chughtai always did them after reading the manuscript of the book, or at least the idea of same. A chapter in the history of this region. The neglect of Urdu now is phenomenal in a planned conspiracy against Pakistan.
IMTIAZ ALI TAJ AND M.A. RAHMAN CHUGHTAI
TWO FRIENDS TILL THE VERY END
Pioneers of Urdu in Lahore
The Daily Imroze had brought the worst news possible for M.A. Rahman Chughtai. Somebody had murdered Imtiaz Ali Taj in his home by stabbing him to death. The artist could not believe it. Both brothers rushed to the house of their friend on Empress road. A painting of Chughtai already hung in the drawing room stairs and a film done by a famous director had the photo shoot in the house itself.
I remember a ride in the car of Imtiaz Ali Taj. He had volunteered to drop M.A. Rahman Chughtai in his car. As a kid it fascinated me to see the INDICATOR SIGNS in his car. A spring used to be pulled and an arm like indicator would come out of the central sill of the car. A fascination of mine which knew no bounds as we saw the moon roll by our window in its serenity. All this while Imtiaz Ali Taj in his sophisticated soft voice would continue talking with the artist. I remember being offered tea by the Mrs, that is Hijab Imtiaz Ali Taj, another fine lady of Hyderabad, and the romance of the two writers, was phenomenal in its own sense. Their creative work brought them together.
Of course the father of Imtiaz Ali Taj was the real creative force in the life of Lahore as well as the language of Urdu. ‘Darul-Ishat’ was the name of that group. It is interesting that the very first feature on M.A. Rahman Chughtai appeared in this magazine and the dust-cover of that magazine was naturally done by Chughtai himself. So the contact between Imtiaz Ali Taj and the artist was decades old. Both supported each other. When Imtiaz Ali Taj wrote his magnum opus the drama on ‘Anarkalli’, it was natural that it would be illustrated with works of M.A. Rahman Chughtai. There are many other things in which they mutually cooperated with each other.
When Naeem Taher got married to the daughter of Imtiaz Ali Taj, I remember Imtiaz Ali Taj asking Chughtai to support his son-in-law as the new Secretary of Al-hamra Arts Council Lahore. The story of Al-hamra is of course a story in itself and we have a blog on same, which is worthy to be read. The shame of our bureaucracy is without limit as they openly listen to the dictats of foreign lobbies in trying to twist and turn the patriotic history of Lahore and Pakistan.
THE MAGIC OF HARIDAS LAHORI
ABILITY TO BE BURIED ALIVE FOR MONTHS
FEASIBILITY ENDORSED BY DR MARTIN HONIGBERGER
Lahore is famous for its crazy things. Things no sane mind can believe. This is the story of such an incident in 1837. Mahrajah Ranjit Singh was also not in a mood to believe any crazy stories. That is why when he heard the claim that the Hindu Haridas who had come to Lahore from the mountains had the ability to be buried alive for months, he confronted it as a personal issue to test the claims. Haridas adopted a sitting position and was sewn in Khaddar cloth. Then he was placed in a wooden box, riveted with personal seals of the Mahrajah. Then he was buried and an Army was placed on guard over the burial place. Forty days later, the same was dug up, an the lifeless body brought out. Desi ghee was placed on his tongue and his tongue was pulled out, and a exploding sound was heard and he was massaged with hot water and ghee. Within half an hour he was awake and a short time after that talking again with the British present there. The Mahrajah participated in the test himself, by putting the seals on the casket with his own hands.
The Daily Telegraph, London, reported this incident in 1880 with details:
“When all the necessary preparations have been accomplished, the Fakir closes all the openings of his body with stoppers made of aromatic wax, lays his tongue far back in his throat, crosses his hands on his breast, and suspends animation by means of holding his breath.
On his being brought back to life one of the first operations is, by means of the fingers, to draw the tongue away from the back of the throat; a warm and aromatic paste made of meal is then placed on his head, and air is blown into his lungs and into the ear-holes, from which the wax stoppers have been removed, the stoppers in the nostrils being presently forced out with an explosive noise.
This is said to be the first sign of a return to life. He then gradually commences to breathe, opens the eyes, and recovers consciousness, continuous friction of the body being carried on all the time.”
Everybody reckoned it as impossible, but when when it was witnessed by all, then it was left to experts to explain how the same feat was done. Dr Martin Honigberger, the personal physician of the Mahrajah was brought in, to test the claim on scientific lines. And much to the surprise of all, Dr Martin Honigberger, not only believed Haridas Lahori, but also brought out a scientific theory, as to how it was actually done. By even referring to stories in the Bible itself, he came to the conclusion that it was all possible, and their eyes were not deceiving them in any way.
The Journalist recalled a tale from the Bible itself:
” We are not told whether the Seven Sleepers who retired to a cave in Ephesus during the reign of the Christian-killing Emperor Decius, and only woke up 155 years afterward, when Theodosins II was on the throne, made any special preparation, but probably they did not. Perhaps it was not necessary. Those were stirring times for members of the new faith, and they had little opportunity to grow obese.”
Our region still remains a region of Unexplainable tales, which perhaps modern science could have explained, if anybody could have bothered. But this is a famous recorded case, and worthy of being remembered in time. A similar incident is recorded in the Humayoun nama, when they dug up a place, and found a man sitting there. He did not knew that present time and had been interred there from ages. But more on that later as it is is also related to Lahore itself.
THE LAST MUSLIM; YES THE FIRST MUSLIM
ISLAM CAN NEVER DIE
THE QURANIC LAW OF MUKAFAT (As a mere story)
It was the grandest feast in the history of mankind. The whole Caymann Islands were lit. Delegations had arrived from all over the globe. It was a celebration par excellence. The most sumptuous food was being cooked. Naked girls walked around in the hall letting delegates do their liking. Pole dancers entertained the crowd. Acrobats worked wonders. Bacchus would have envied the get together of the BROTHERHOOD OF SATAN, the modern Freemasons of t.he world. The cabal of all cabals had invited all the other cabals to the fun fair party. The event the physical execution of the LAST MUSLIM in the world.
Million of millions of Muslims all over the world were by now exterminated. The leader of the Brotherhood would behead the last Muslim with the most ancient diabolic sword available. A tray had been placed under the neck of the last Muslim. The choicest cabal members would as vampires drink his blood. Glasses of champagne with the choicest crystals from Czechoslovakia were there for the vampire show. The leader and all others relished the moment for extermination of Islam. It was befitting that the last Muslim should be allowed to say his final words and he was allowed to say them.
“YOU CAN NOT FINISH ISLAM”. The last Muslim shouted through his blood filled eyes. Our Quran is still everywhere in your museum collections. You have not been able to finish it. Your greed prevents you from destroying expensive antiques of great value. Our civilization is preserved in your museums and antique places. There is not an iota of doubt in my mind. Allah will prevail! Allah o Akbar!
Shemihaza the leader of the Brotherhood of Satan smiled and said “Repent that you can live. Embrace our cabal!” The last Muslim kept on shouting Islam cannot be finished, Allah will prevail! The house shouted like the ring of the gladiators, “Cut the head of the bastard!” Thumbs down.
The Ancient sword flashed. The head was cut. Blood started dripping in the tray. People were shouting with glee. All ready to sip the blood of the last Muslim. But something had happened. Shemihaza saw the poignant luster in the eyes of the dying man. Utter relaxation. Utter strength of faith.The spirituality of his eternal belief that Islam cannot die. A miracle happened. The same twinkle burst into the eyes of Shemihaza.The Last Muslim was dead, but another Muslim had been born at the same moment. Shemihaza knew he was Abu-Jehad now and it was his job to dismantle the Brother hood of Satan forever or die trying. Islam outlived that moment! Truly it could never die.
Finishing the Muslim Nations will never work. Your own people will be converted to the Way of Allah, for that is the way of the Truth!
DRAMA AND THEATER
FIRST CREATIVE IMPULSE OF M.A. RAHMAN CHUGHTAI
Theatre in Lahore 1910-1918
The drama ability of Agha Hashar had rocked the creative scene in India. Agha Hashar was staging his plays in great cities of India and making large amounts of money. His dramas were proverbial on the lips of Hindustan. The Agha Hashar Company was dominating Calcutta. Master Hussain Baksh son of an architect mimar of Lahore joined the Agha Hashar Company as Stage artist of the background scenes. His paintings were Master strokes and it was reputed that he used to earn Rs 5000 per month, a phenomenal amount for those times. The theater craze was with the boys of Lahore.
M.A. Rahman Chughtai was fascinated with dramas. One day the Head Master of the Railway Technical School, Mr Chatterjee, bigoted Hindu of that time, thrashed him, and the young Chughtai rebelled against the injustice. With few friends from the Mohalla Chabuk Sawaran, they ran away to Karachi, to enlist in a drama company for writing dramas. A relative was sent by Mian Kareem Baksh Mimar the father to bring him back. When Chughtai came back, his father died in 1913. The three younger brothers were isolated by the eldest one the step brother Muhammed Hussain, and opened a fire wood shop (TAL in local terms) inside Yakki Gate Lahore. The two brothers Abdullah and Abdur Raheem used to sell the firewood while Chughtai on a charpai at the back of the shop, used to write dramas. The news of the dramas reached Punjab Bible Society in Lahore, and Chughtai volunteered an URDU version of the play THE BEHEADING OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST known as QATAL YOUHANA. It was staged at a theater in Bhatti Gate, Lahore. It is reputed that soon after the play stated, the audience rebelled and started breaking the chairs in total disgust. In any case the Bible Society published the drama in book form.
We visited the house of famous dramatist Mrs Najmuddin on Sanda road and requested a copy. She told us that she had given her copy to Hijab Imtiaz Ali Taj. The esteemed lady had put it in her garage and was not able to locate it. A drama lost for the present time. This episode in the life of M.A. Rahman Chughtai is hardly known and is worthy of being recorded. Later Chughtai started photography and finally painting and there the legend grew into a phenomena all its own.
One thing is certain here. The drama book calligraphed by Din Muhammed Katib has a child like illustration on it related to SILVER KING of Agha Hashar. It has a sign in the corner saying ‘M R’. The illustration is related to a series of dramas published in Lahore around 1908-1915, and this is the SCHOOL period of M.A. Rahman Chughtai. There is every reason to believe that this illustration is also by M.A. Rahman Chughtai as a school child, and that matter is a matter of record too. THE FIRST DUST-COVER ON RECORD OF M.A. RAHMAN CHUGHTAI.
INAM SHAH THE POSSIBLE FIRST CONVERT OF LAHORE
THOMAS VELPY FRENCH DEDICATION TO CHRISTIANITY
Most of T.V. French’s students died in his tenure
When Thomas Velpy French arrived at Lahore, there was no one to receive him. He carried his own baggage to an Inn in Lahore. He brought grandoise plans for a Divinity College in Lahore. His other plans was that the locals hated the English language, and one must tell them not to confuse the English language with Christianity. He made the difficult decision to translate the Sacred texts in Urdu and Urdu would be the language of teaching in Lahore. People resented his ideas but he stuck with them to the last. Not only that he even forbade the Western dress for them. He suggested that after conversion, people wearing western dress and speaking in English are immediately isolated from their loved ones, relatives and friends, as well as the society. The idea indeed was good. So good that the American mission took it up too. Reverend Forman got involved in translating biblical texts and it is on record that he made many Urdu translations., In fact a Professor of F.C. College has recently done research on this same subject and offered number of Urdu books on Bible done by Reverend Forman, of course founder of F.C. College Lahore.
The Divinity College started with four students and later on there was an addition of seven of them. But the unfortunate part was that Sickness prevailed and a lot of them died within the short span of T.V. French being Bishop in Lahore. Yes, four of them died very early; one of consumption, one drowned in Jhelum river, another of consumption too, and the other of fever, with which he went into coma. A sad end for the newly converts to happen like this.
Inam Shah, probably of Lahore, became possibly the First Convert in Lahore. Termed and dubbed as a most bigoted Muhammedan (the word bigoted is used by French himself to denote Inam Shah’s family background, for he belonged to a very religious family here), he was ordained by Bishop Milman of Calcutta, and probably sent to Peshawar. Not necessary to know how it happened, but it is said that he was taken back by the biblical words of ‘OUR FATHER’. Inam Shah had rebelled against his own religious father. It impressed him so much that he converted to Christianity. We do not know much more than that.
We do know that T.V. French himself fell sick and went home. He was replaced by Dr W. Hooper, who was a scholar of Sanskirit and interested only in converting Hindus from then on. It seems that there was a superstition evolved in Lahore that converting Muslims led to deaths. This is not our saying. This is a strange confession from the annals of biblical history of Lahore. They were good people, tying o reach out to others to promote their cause. This they never realized that you cannot let a student appear for Matriculation, when he has already taken his PHD on the subject. The evolution of religion in the Judeo-Christian-Muslim traditions had culminated in the last prophet of Allah.
NOT THE WAY TO DIE AS MUSLIMS
NOT THE WAY TO KILL AS MUSLIMS
Not passive but endless struggle
How Muslims live and die? The valour in the battlefield is ever legendary. A million examples can be sought but one of the most valiant is that of the MAHDIYA a history of Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 1881-1899. Caliph Mahdi had declared a Muslim renaissance against the British, and great wars were fought by Caliph Mahdi, Usman Sheikh al-Din, Ali wad Hilu, and Usman Diqna. The British Generals were General Gordon, Sir Evelyn Baring, General Kitchner, and others. All the final battles took place at Omdurman in Khartoum.
It was a battle for history books. The Muslim Army was surrounded and there was no hope. They could have easily surrendered and saved their lives. But that was not be so. Out of arms and ammunition, they preferred death in battle. A British officer acknowledges this himself, when he says:
“Our men were perfect, but the Dervishes were superb beyond prefection. It was their largest, best, and bravest army that ever fought against us for Mahdism, and it died worthily of the huge empire that Mahdism won and kept for so long. Their riflemen, mangled by every kind of death and torment that man can devise, clung round their black flag and the green, emptying their poor, rotten, home-made cartridges dauntlessly. Their spearmen charged death at every minute hopelessly. Their horsemen led attack riding into the bullets till nothing was left.”
Nobody ran away from the battlefield. All the men faced death in the face, struggling till their last breath. Bravery was personified that day. History made forever.
The same was repeated elsewhere. The Caliph himself was cornered:
“For the last time could be heard the rolling of the Khalifa’s war drums and the booming of his great horns; for the last time, as the light gradually filled the sky, could be seen large bodies of jibba-clad Mahdists, advancing under their fluttering banners; and for the last time, disciplined fire smashed their gallant but hopeless attack.”
And when the bodies were found, it was seen that the Khalifa with his choicest men had sat down to prayer, as death had struck them all in ordered ranks. No thought of saving their lives, but ended their life gracefully and with dignity. And the British ruthless in their cruelty, even did the most unpleasant thing possible. Orders were given to demolish the tomb of the Mahdi by blowing it up with explosives, and the bones of the Mahdi thrown in the river Nile. The concession the skull was allowed to be buried in the Muslim cemetery at Wadi Halfa.
So when we see a body of men standing submissively in front of barbarians, knowing that they are going to be killed; we feel it is not Islamic to die like this. When you know death is coming, it was better to proclaim ‘Allah-o-Akbar’ and attack the barbarians, whatever may have been the result. Dying like sheep or dying like lions was in their grasp. Death would have come any way, but they may have taken an enemy or two with them. And that really mattered in the battle for Islam. Hearing ‘Allah-o-Akbar from the barbarians was an insult to Islamic valour.
SEX PARTY OVER EMPEROR JAHANGEER’S REMAINS (1828)
COMMANDER M. AMISE AND RANJIT SINGH
Looters and plunderers have no qualms. In fact doing the odd taboo thing is an aphrodisiac for them. The British converted the Taj Mahal into a honeymoon hotel and for some time, it also became a suicide point for its jilted lovers. The mausoleum of Rabia Durrani wife of Emperor Aurangzeb, in Aurangabad was also used for ball room dancing. And in Lahore, the mausoleum of Muhammed Salih Kanbo, Court historian of Shah Jahan as a Church as well as mausoleum of Nadira Begum, wife of Emperor Jahangeer as the Main Church too (and making a concubine Anarkali out of her). Examples too numerous to list. The Sikh rule was not characterized differently. The plunder of Lahore is well on record.
European Adventurers at the Court of Ranjit Singh were having their own kind of fun, far away from their homes. Deeds of many are on record. Some did good things, some bad things. Commander M. Amise, French for some, and from Spain for others, was also working for Ranjit Singh. Ranjit Singh was not bothered about his past record, as others had reported of flaws in his character. The Gujranawalla dacoit sanctioned Jahangeer’s Mausoleum for his troops and the Badshahi mosque for his living place. But he never stayed at the mosque and preferred the Jahangeer’s mausoleum. He had the debris removed, the garden straightened etc and started living his life in the room of the sarcophagus itself. In fact it is said that there was an opening on the roof which Lehna Singh (or Sobha Singh) had covered with wooden planks after removing the marble balustrade etc. In any case Commander M. Amise was very proud of cleaning up his living quarter.
People of Lahore take their sacred places very seriously. Mirza Akram Baig was the descendant of the Emperor and Empress Nur Jahan and he used to hold the ‘PAR DA MELA’ festival there every year. Commander M. Amise went one step further. He not only lived in that room of the grave, he started using it for sexual parties. It is said that the sarcophagus was actually used as a bed for sexual intercourse with nautch girls of Lahore.
How much is true or not, one does not know? Everybody knew that he died on the grave of Jahangeer itself. This one knows that he died a mysterious death. Cholera was only an illusion. Some say it was the wrath of Allah. Others attribute it to the ghost of Nur Jahan herself. It was also rumoured that the shade of Jahangeer had been seen and the Emperor predicted the death of the European rascal. But rational people say that he was probably murdered by a gardener at the instance of the Mutavallis or khadims of the mausoleum. In any case he was actually buried somewhere outside in haste. Ranjit Singh had the building closed and the walls sealed after his death. Captain Wade tells us that the news of the death of Amise reached him on 18th October, 1828, and he worked for Ranjit Singh for two years.Sir Edward Maclagan had not only been shown the grave of Amise, but also shown the desecration of it many times. It was reported by Maclagan that something very bad Amise had done to incur the wrath of the people of Lahore. There used to be a grave in the compound attributed to some BABA SAEN we used to see as kids when we visited the place. Perhaps the grave was of Commander M. Amise himself. No interest is taken by the Archaeological department to solve the riddle of the ages. Here a SEX PARTY led to actual death of the inhabitant.
P.S. Some people spell and pronounce Amise as Ohms.
MARTIAL LAW IN LAHORE AND PUNJAB
YES BRITISH MARTIAL LAW OF 1919
For all those who feel British ruled excellently
First the definition “Rowlatt Acts, (February 1919), legislation passed by the Imperial Legislative Council, the legislature of British India. The acts allowed certain political cases to be tried without juries and permitted internment of suspects without trial. Their object was to replace the repressive provisions of the wartime Defence of India Act (1915) by a permanent law. They were based on the report of Justice S.A.T. Rowlatt’s committee of 1918”.
Emergency required emergency measures. British liked to over do things. The Rowlatt Act started a rebellion. Much to the regret of Punjab, the Rowlatt Act was passed and immediately agitation started in the Punjab. The agitation was not violent, when the British decided to deal with it in a total ruthless manner. The famous Sir Michael O’Dwyer was responsible for the Jallianbagh tragedy, where thousands were gunned down without any mercy. The locals had to respond too. For instance in Amritsar five Europeans were murdered and one lady assaulted in an indecent way. Railway Stations, even Churchs were burned in the agitation. The British took it as open rebellion and decided to punish Punjab forever. The over reaction was obvious.
Can you believe that in the declaration of Martial law on 15th April, 1919, all hell broke loose! More than ten thousand persons were rounded about and Martial law courts sentenced people to death and life imprisonment. Properties of various people were confiscated at will. The Commanding Officer in Lahore was Lt Colonel Frank Johnson. Some prominent people in Lahore like Dr Dura Chand and Lal Harkishen Lal were taken to task. Death was announced for many of them. A Muslim Dr Saifuddin Kichlew of Amritsar was sentenced to life imprisonment. There is a record of a long list of persons hanged to death or imprisoned for life. And most of these people were highly educated and professionals of their field.
Can you believe that in this Martial Law the British resorted to bombing certain areas by aero planes. YES BOMBING THE LOCAL POPULATION. The gimmick guy who are quick to attack our Pak Army fail to even read about the atrocities commit’ed by the British in Punjab as well as in Lahore.
Rowlatt Act and the Jallianbagh tragedy finally resulted in the obvious. The start of the demise of the British rule in the region. When the public is not with you, result of force is obvious. Here in Pakistan we are all cheering the Pak Army in getting rid of the Khawarajs of Pakistan. Well done Pak Army! We cheer you all the time. Our Martial laws are the most democratic and people friendly in history.
THE ECONOMIC COLLAPSE OF PAKISTAN
Losing direction in labyrinth of games
It is on from a long time now. Engendering a SYSTEM which will elect the worst of your society. As they are the worst, they are also the totally corrupt. They have not even learnt the art of gentle talk. They rather bray like donkeys. A proverb says that when a Crow started walking like a Swan, he forgot his own walk in the process.
National assets are the amanat of the Nation. Ruthless exploitation of same has made billionaires of paupers, and the country not on on the brink, on actual economic ruin. Then there is the great game of Tax hunt amongst the poor of the society. Victimize them till their economic end. Break whole bazaars, shops, places of business for elusive development projects. Acquire their lands at paisas, and then instigate a case against them, that they do not own what they have possessed for say a hundred years. Does anyone have a registration deed for the Badshahi Mosque Lahore? Where can you get one? Ask a patawari, he will manufacature anything you say? He does not realize that he is going to die one day and will face more than the wrath of the bureaucracy here. Or even the politicians. Shame has reached the point where shamelessness has become a virtue, to snicker in the night. To boast in the night to the wife, of the casualties of ones misdeeds, and accept a healthy orgasm from her. It has got into the blood really, and only by blood letting, it can get out.
Marie Antoinette was actually innocent about her remarks. She actually did not know the difference between bread and cake. Here everybody knows, and the concerned do not care. The only reason the malignancy is being prolonged is due to LACK OF UNITY. The day the nation unites, it can break the back of these people and throw them in the sea if they like. And if they do not, then Halaku Khan is overdue. And Baghdad will be no more. And the most beautiful part in history is that Halaku who finished the Islamic Empire of Caliphate, his own children embraced Islam. Hardly an example where the victor accepts the life style of the vanquished.