Friday, October 9, 2009


Some time back a friend of mine sent me a book on ALLAMA IQBAL. The book had beautiful anecdotes from the life of this great master.Allama had a life long servant Ali Baksh from Gurdaspur.Though ali Baksh was illiterate yet he came to be known as Allama"s friend and confidant. Some interesting stories from the book are as under :-
Munira Bano was Allama's daughter .Allama had engaged a German Governess for her.He had a high opinion of German women and considrered them Charactered and brave . Allama was conversant with german language . Munira Bano too learnt german and Allama , the governess and Munira would converse with each other in this language usually.

Allama was against social intermixing of women with men . He was a strong believer that a women should command her family only. He had advised Munira begum to emulate the life of Hazrat Fatima ( R A). He believed in simple living and high thinking for women too. He refused diplomatic appointment to south africa as he felt that his wife shall have to mix freely with men in that society .

Allama was always surrounded by books . Books on the dining table, books on the bed , books on the garden chair and books here and there in the house . So much was he absorbed in them that he would quite often miss meal after meal.
" Sahib leave it for a minute . Take your food . You missed it in the morning too." Ali Baksh would say.
" Ali Baksh it is now too late for the dinner . I will have a glass of milk only" Alama would usually say.
Allama wept like a child if any issue touched his heart .while reading quran in the morning Allama would again weep copiously and leaves of the book used to become wet with tears and Ali Baksh would put them in Sun for Drying .
Allama would meet every visitor affectionately . His face would brighten should the visitor be from kashmir or the land of his ancesstors . He would ask ali Baksh to prepare tea and personally come to the gate to see them off.

Many people called at his house for entrusting their litigation to Allama . He would refuse cases which he thought were based fraud or falsehood.
He never ran after clients.
He gave same food to his servants which he himself ate. He spoke to them in polite and humble tone . He paid them their dues in time . He helped ali Baksh to wipe out the debts of his father . He gave a good portion of his income to his Parents , brothers , Nephews , Nieces , sisters and other blood relations . He was extremely affectionate to his friends .
Ali Baksh goes on to add in this book that Allama would suddenly get up in the middle of the night and ask for his Huqqa to be prepared . There used to be a strong restlessness in his face . He would sink in his quilt or
put his head between his knees . He would ask for his pen and inkpot and would get lost in some thoughts . He would write something on the papers and after this writing was over he returned to his normal life and would lie down on the bed and fall asleep.

Allama was highly touched by the life and character of Ram . He would often be discussing this with his friends and visitors . some lines from the poem on Ram by allama are as under :-

Labreiz Hai Sharaabe haqeeqat se Jaame hind.
Sab falsafi Hain Khitai Maghrib ke Raame Hind .
Hai Raam Ke wajood Pe Hindostaan ko Naaz
Ahle Nazar Samjhatein hain Unko Imaame Hind.
(The cup of india is full to its brim with the wine of truth .
The thinkers of west in fact reflect
the philsophy of Lord Rama only.
India is proud of the existence of Rama 's name in its culture ,
Men of thought consider Rama
frontline religious leader of entire india.)
Most of literary figures would sit on a durri in Iqbal's old house in Bhatti Bazar in Sialkot in early days .He later shifted to a house situated near Munshi Ghulab singh's printing press in lahore where he stayed for 3 years . later he again shifted to a house in Anarkali popularly known as Baithak. where he lived upto 1916. He again shifted to a house Navahanwali Kothi on Mcleod road lahore where his great Book javaid Naama was written . Finally in 1935 after persistent requests from his friends and admirers Allama started the construction of his own house "Javid manzil" on Mayo Road lahore and stayed there till his death. his wife died immediately after his shifting to this new house owned by him and then onwards he rarely moved out . He spent most of his time lying on the bed and he breathed his last on this bed only in the house which he built after thirty four years of struggle .
Allama had a fancy for pigeions and birds .He was a lover of sports . He would come to Sialkot and sit with his old classmates who were either shopkeepers or petty traders who called him BALA.He enjoyed kite flying and in childhood he would frequently play gulli Danda or go to Akhara for wrestling .
Allama would read newspaper from cover to cover. He would talk to his visitors according to their level of understanding issues .He would order tea and his face would brighten and beam with happiness amidst gossip with friends . He would pass a witty remark and send every body to peals of laughter .He liked them to stay longer and longer and very reluctantly would part with their company.
The book makes mention of Dr Katju ( A kashmiri Pandit ) home minister of India in 1954 having attended Pakistan High commission in New delhi for celebratation of First Iqbal day. Dr Katju read out Allama's poem Naya Shivala in this function. . Pandit ji also attended this function and openly told that gathering that he himself was a great admirer of Allama .Pandit ji went on to add that allama 's message was for the entire world and his thought transcended national boundaries.
Too issey paimaane-e-imoroz-o-farda say na naap,
Javedaan, paiham, ravaan, hardam javaan hai zindagee .allama Iqbal
(Measure not life by the hour glass
Of yesterdays and tomorrows to come
Life is eternal and ever-changing and
Forever renewing its youthfulness).
More on Allama next time . enjoy this post with three photographs of beautiful Dal lake captured by me on 08.09.2009.
( A K Mota )

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


  1. Mota sahib,You have conveyed very revealing things about the great poet Iqbal sahib , hitherto unknown. Really his personality was a shining example of what a human being should be. "Measure not life by the hour glass
    Of yesterdays and tomorrows to come
    Life is eternal and ever-changing and
    Forever renewing its youthfulness " How beautifully the whole philosphy of life has been conveyed.

  2. Thanks for the comments .Even if u read Allama in translation . he is still appealing.


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