Thursday, March 5, 2015

THE TONIC ( HERBAL CUM DRY FRUIT ) SELLER FROM AFGHANISTAN IN KASHMIR


                                                                               

      
 ( ACTOR PRAN IN HIS   ROLE  AS   PATHAAN  SHER KHAN .    A STILL  FROM   1973 BLOCKBUSTER  ZANJEER )


 WHERE HAS THE  FRIENDLY AND TRUTHFUL PATHAAN  GONE  ?

We saw him in films as a helpful human being  always ready to  side with truth and honesty. Sometimes a  tough money lender  who would  come outside the factory premises to collect his dues on  the salary day of workers . We saw him selling Kishmish , Badaam , Khobaani and dry Anjeer . He could be seen in streets of our cities selling his  on spot made Herbal cum Dry fruit tonic . We called him Khan chacha, Pathaan  Bhai or Biraadar . We grew up listening that he came all the way from Kabul, kandhaar , Jalalaabaad or Herat with his bag  of Dry fruits . He could not be bullied. A man of tough appearance  who always wore his national dress ; A  Salwar ,A long shirt and a Tora headgear with a long end hanging down the back with a heavy sandal ( Paizaar )in his feet.
When actor Pran portrayed him in many memorable  roles, he became a part of Indian psyche. “ Khonchay “  , “Biraadar “ ,  “ Khan “,  “ lale Ki Jaan “ ,“  Meharbaan “,  “Qadardhaan “and so many words were associated with him. Even Gurudev  Tagore was touched by his simplicity and adherence to truth . Tagore  wrote a  touching story Cabulliwala with a  Pathan as its  central character.
I vividly remember his language . In Kashmir ,  he would be seen near BROCA PRESS  Lal Chowk  or on the pavement close to NAAZ  Cinema in Hazuri Bagh .He would always  engage a  local help for  crushing  Dry fruits and seeds from the Bottles that were spread in a semicircular manner on the pavement . Once he found a small gathering around him ,he would start with  his verbal marketing skills to sell  the tonic that was under preparation. It was a cure all and treat all stuff that was  primarily marketed as an aphrodisiac . 

I have spent many college days watching his  footpath marketing.I quote his words,

“ Meharbaan Qadardaan.Yeh *Maajoon e shabaab hai. Yeh Ilaaj e kamnaseebi hai .Iss ka maafiq dawaa kissi mamaaliq mein na hai na milegaa. Firangi ki dawaa khaao ek beemari ka ilaaj karo aur duss mein mubtilaa ho jaao.Yeh tibb hai.Yeh yunaani  ilam ka kamaal hai.Yeh rooh ka gizaa hai. khaan dua ke sathh dawaa mein yakeen rakhtaa hai.Dawaa lo maaliq shifa ataa karegaa.Yakeenan.Iss ko  buzurg Baap ko do, Chhota bhai ko do, Bachaa ko do ,  Dost ko do,  Dushman ko do .Sab ka dua lo. khaan ko yaad karnaa. Ho khwaja ! Aey Pandit ji  !Mera Sardar Bhai ! khabadaar !.Hujoom mein khaan ka dushman jeib katraa bhi hai. Tavajju idhar magar haathh jeib par.  Khabardaar! Hoshiyaar !.

Khaan pather me shigaaf se nahin niklaa. Khaan ka maa hai.  khaan ka biwi hai . khaan ka bacha hai . khaan ayaal mein rehtaa hai.  khaan tabardaar hai. sab amraaz ka ilaaj karegaa. yukk zenaana yukk mardaana ka beemari  majlis mein bataane laayak nahin.  Aissa Beemari  par pardaa rakhnaa . ilaaj karnaa  zaroori . khaan bil khasoosan aissa beemari ka ilaaj karegaa. Apna kashmiri bhai koyee khaas baat karega . Apnaa kashmiri bhai koyee khaas ilaaj karegaa .  khaan dawaai bech kar yukk ba yukk sunnegaa.  Maalik shiffa bakshegaa.  yukk -do -Teen  din mein dawwai ka assar aayegaa. Abhi bolegaa to hawaa mein . Baad mein bolegaa to khaan ki jaan ko ..

Yukk chakkar lagaaigaa Mera aziz Haathh uthaayegaa.Khaan sab ko dawaa de ke jaayega.Aaj paan nahin nosh kiyaa aaj cigarette ka zahar nahin liya aaj koyee nashaa nahin kiya ,Pilastik ka dibba mein degaa.chaandi ka varaq laga ke degaa. Dua kartaa khuda shifa ataa karay.Ek baar legaa baar baar legaa.rukh par gul e anaar ka lal rang aayegaa. Baal 100saal tak kaala rahegaa. Puraana Nazlaa ka keeda eik chheenk se zameen par khalaas.  Khoon ko sheesha ke maafiq saaf karega. Meharbaan! . Qadardaan.!” 

Where has this friendly face gone ? How did he disappear suddenly from our Cities ?



( Autar Mota )

PP
Majoon is an old Aphrodisiac in Unani system of medicine. Alice Albinia  in her book  "Empires of the Indus" adds..

"The Hakim in his resonant pashto explained that MAAJOON is prepared from Testicles of the Water Hog, Deer's navel, intestines of a baby camel, sparrow's brain, Lapis Lazuli, silver leaf, ground seed pearls, sandfish, pomegranate oil, honey, A pinch of God dust, dry figs  And intoxicants .The Hakim's forefathers had been making MAAJOON since the time of Emperor Babur."

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