Wednesday, May 7, 2014



Photo Autar Mota

We hardly saw his face as and when he entered the lane leading to our house in Rainawari . The voguv seller would always carry the load on his head and move inside Localities or through Bazaars . Possibly that was the only practical way to carry the load .Rarely did we see VOGUV being sold on shops . I doubt having ever seen. Yes at times some poor Artisans would carry this load in a Roofless Boat ( Demb Naav ) upto Naidyaar or Jogi Lanker Bridge in Rainawari wherefrom this load would be carried on head . Quite often the seller happened to be a poor Voguv Weaving artisan . The Voguv seller would move inside interior localities of Rainawari Crying ..

“ Voguv Maa Kenh ! Voguv Maa Kenh !” or “ Any one needing a Voguv ! Anyone needing a Voguv."


I remember my mother buying two pieces simultaneously from Abdul Jabbar the Voguv seller from Dal lake .He would always insist his buyers to buy a Jooer ( Two pieces ) .We always had a new Voguv in stock .

Voguv or the poor man's Carpet is made from long spongy stems of weed plant ( locally known as Peatch ) that grows wildly in lakes , ponds and water logged areas of kashmir .

Sitting on a New Voguv especially outside the kitchen was a delight .Kashmiris used it for flooring near kitchen where they ate food . It was also used as first layer of flooring in the rooms upon which second and third layer( (Comprising of a Durrie and Masnad or Gabba ) would be put .A voguv would last for one season and after sometime its spongy reeds would become so pressed and loose that it needed to be replaced . . use of Voguv has almost vanished now .

A New Voguv was also used by Kashmiri Pandits for Marriage , Birth , Death and other Religious rituals .In  DAV school, i had some classmates  who would cut the end pieces from this Voguv and smoke them like cigarettes .

Adds My friend G H Mir Lasjan :

 "VOGUV  was  also used for storing dried crop like Paddy and Maize after making it air tight by covering with layers of mud .This Huge container, in which more than 500 kgs  of SHAALI, MAKKI and MUSTARD etc used to be stored by Farmers was called " VAGGEV LOPPUN ".

Late Shr. S.K. Kak ( IAS ) ,who possibly retired as controller Tawaza J&K Government ,would always relax on a Voguv ( weed Mat ). I have personally seen him sitting on a VOGUV spread neatly in the sitting room outside the kitchen of his house at Naidyaar Rainawari.

To this brief write up , I am adding a poem “SONZAL RANGAN HAAENZ” or “A RAINBOW OF COLOURS ” written by late Syed Rasool Pompur .

( Sonzal Rangan Haaenz )

Bahaaruk Jashan ,
Zan ta Golaaluv Rataa Zool Kormuut,
Chhaaeti Ta Chhaaeini Sotariv alfaal ,
Soant Hawaavus Vaanij Kooraan ,
Saanie azal samayuuk yendher ti Thhokk,
Ye chhoat, Ye sabz, Ye Anaarei,
Ye leidhurr , Ye vozul Tosaa Kataan ..
Ye Tchandara Talwaar ti phuut,
Hu Gaashi taarukh ti pyaav vaaeiss,
Neelis Aakaashus Oburr nabas kunn ma Vuchh ,
Patchhi haeindiss Aaenn Pattis chhu Doath Vasaan,
Panuni Angzari ta Arrup Buthii .
Khawaaban haaenz ye sonzal Vuchhithh
Mataa Vanna Ta zi
Bemaaran Sandhoar…

( Syed Rasool Pompur )

Two decade back , possibly in 1994, this poem was translated to Hindi by Shashi Shekhar Toshkhani. I love the poem and its superb Hindi rendering by shri Toshkhani ji’.

Bahaar Ka Utsav !
Arunima Anant Gul e laalon ki ,
Khaali ,
Akele ,
Sooti Hal ,
Jaise Vasanti Hawa ke
Kaleije mein chubey huve ,
Charkha Thhak Gaya.
Hamaare Bhaagya ke samay ka
Yeh safed , yeh hara , yeh Anaar ke rang ka ,
Yeh peela , Yeh laal Pashmeena kaatatay,
Yeh pheekey Rang Jorratay ,
Yeh Talwaar bhi Aadhe Chaand ki toot gayee ,
Woh Bhor ka taara bhi Gir Gayaa ,
Woh Neel Gagan ,
Mat Dekho,
Aasthaa ke darpan Chhat par Baras rahein hain Aulay,
Darpan ke tukaday joadd kar kyaa dekhogay,
Apney asankhya Aakaarheen Chehray,
Rangon ka Talwaarnuma
Yeh Paare ka Indradhanush Dekh,
Yeh mat kaho ki,

( Autar Mota 07.04.2014 )
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