Friday, March 18, 2016

SADAT HASSAN MANTO WRITES TO UNCLE SAM


                                                                                               


(1)

EXCERPTS FROM SAA'DAT HASSAN MANTO’S LETTER DATED 15.03.1954 ADDRESSED TO *UNCLE SAM 

“ The Weapons Agreement signed with Pakistan is something great.Please stick to it .On other front , please strike a similar deal with India as well.Send old and discarded weapons to both the countries because all those weapons that you used in previous wars must be of no use to you . This discarded and useless ammunition shall reach a proper destination and your Arms factories shall not go idle .
Uncle , Old American woolen coats are fantastic. Our *Loonda Bazaar was totally worthless had these coats not arrived . But why don’t you send us trousers . Don’t you remove your *trousers ? May be you divert them to India . You are very clever .There is something to it ; You send your old coats here and your trousers to India . And when India and Pakistan go for a war , it shall be actullay your coats and trousers fighting each other with the ammunition that you dispatched to both the countries “

( Translation from Urdu )




 (2)
EXCERPTS FROM MANTO’S LETTER TO *UNCLE SAM DATED 16TH DECEMBER 1951…

“ Uncle , Why my country was carved out of India and How it became free must be well known to you by now.That is why I take the liberty to write this letter .The way this country became free after being cut apart , I too feel I was made free after being cut apart . Uncle , a person of your stature can well understand what freedom does a bird acquire when its wings are cut apart.
Let us forget this story for the present moment, Uncle My name is Sadat Hassan Manto and I was born at a place that is known as India currently. My mother lies buried over there .My father too is buried over there .My first child is also sleeping under the soil of the land that is not my country at the moment .My country is known as Pakistan now .

Uncle , My counry is not like your country .I regret to say that if the supreme court over here punishes me , there is hardly any paper that can publish my photograph and print the stories of my court cases .
My country is very poor.We don’t have paper to print our Newspapers . We don’t have good printing units .I am the biggest proof of the poverty over here .Uncle , you may not believe it But a writer of 22 books like me does not have a house to live in . You may slip into a great shock on learning that I do not own a Packard or Dodge or even a second hand car. As and when I have to go to some place , I use a rented bicycle.In case any write up gets published in any Newspaper , I earn @Rs7/= per column . That makes me to earn Rs20 to 25 for a story or write up.The moment I earn this amount , I feel like using a Tonga as my mode of transport for buying my drink that is purely Country made or Home distilled cheap liquor . I am sure you shall use Atom Bomb to destroy any such Distillery in your country that manufactures this spurious liquor. “

( TRANSLATED FROM URDU )

( Autar Mota  )

PS
( For Letter No 1 )

* ( Kya Aap Patloonein Nahin Utaar-tay? is the sentence that Manto writes in Urdu ).

* Loonda Bazaar exists In Lahore and Amritsar . It is a Bazaar where old clothes and cheap goods are sold . Old Coats , shirts , Trousers ,Blankets, caps , Books and even socks are bought by people from this market. Something like Sunday Market of kashmir . In Amritsar , This Loonda Bazaar thrives just opposite the Railway station.

* Uncle Sam was a personification title used for America as a nation more specifically for American Government .

Creative Commons LicenseCHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
Based on a work at http:\\autarmota.blogspot.com\.

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