Sunday, November 4, 2012



“ O You Baazigar  ! Do not do this magic over  here . It is Kashmir . We do not like  these violent shows  in magic . Push away .”

That is what the crowds would say to the street magician from Plains performing in Partap Park.This they would cry  when the magician would show his last trick of removing the skull of a child who would be asked to  sleep under  sheet of cloth  .   Sensing the mood of the people ,the magician would close his show in hurry .Yes they would enjoy his all other tricks .  Certainly they were reluctant to see any kind of violence even in street magic shows.

Many times I saw Ghulam Daenaa the trickster who played magic with three  cards ( King , Queen and and Ace  )in this park cheating innocents . He would challenge you to find QUEEN from three cards which he would  slowly shuffle in his hands . You could also notice the movement of each card in the slow shuffle .If you could do that you could win Rs100 if not he took away the 100 rupee note from you smilingly. He had three agents who would always be there winning Rs100 in a well worked out trap to entice innocent onlookers . These four tricksters would together  cheat hapless people during  EID or  SHIVRATRI  and other festive occasions  when their potential  victims would come out for shopping . I saw them playing this trick with  tourists as well on Boulevard . Apart from Partap park , this gang  would entice people at Habba kadal , Zaina kadal and Batmaloo.

Here in this park you could find men sleeping carefree . The Gole Guppa man selling his stuff to locals was always there . Shoe shine boys to polish your shoes were readily available . Congress party workers would also hold open air meetings in this park in case the space in their  Party Head quarter nearby was inadequate . Stray dogs would also sleep under shady and tall poplars . Pensioners going to treasury nearby would relax in the park once they drew their monthly pension .

Fountains were lately added to this park . They attracted tourists too. Many times people going from AbiGuzar area to Exchange Road would cross the park to cut short their journey and enjoy the display iof the fountains . Employees demanding wage revision or better working conditions would also come to this park to express their anger and agitate . There used to be a film show by DAVP in near by Information centre twice a week . People coming for this show would relax in Partap Park once the show was over. The park was visited by Ball Point Pen sellers , Ear wax removing men in small red turbans  ( From Plains during summer ) ,Mice killing powder sellers , Saande ka Teil ( Lizard oil )sellers ,Shilaajeet Sellers and Pathaans selling freshly prepared Herbal Medicine for an ailment which  they termed  General Weakness . Sometimes you could find Palmists from plains holding hand of a local firmly and reading his various luck lines just for five rupees. In nutshell the park was an assembly of innocents, cheats  agitators , idlers ,mobille merchants, workers and day dreamers . And come winter , the park would be covered with a sheet of white snow. Sometimes knee deep. Enjoy some views of this park  along with a poem  More beautiful  by Ali sardar jafri .

(More Beautiful )
Tomorrow there'll be only you and me.
No smiling foe,
No cunning friend
Will come between us.

The dew of spent life
Washes silver the night of your hair.
The blushing rose of your cheek
Will turn golden.
Every hue of twilight will blend
With moonlight, enchanting and delicate.

On your face, Now a poem,
Time will write a story,
And from its many lines,
And love's kisses
Will burst into the smiles of myriad lips.

Culling dark shadows
From nights gone by
Gathering tender strands
From mirthful days,
We will weave royal robes
To clothe our memories' nakedness.

Tomorrow there'll be only you and me.
No smiling foes
No cunning friend
Will come between us.
Eyes of lust will no longer see
Youthful beauty in your cheeks.

Only my experienced eye will tell you
That the beauty of your age
Is more beautiful than youth.
( Ali sardar jafri )

( Photo And Text Autar Mota )

Sunday 4th November 2012… Time 3.15 PM .. Good afternoon.
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CHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
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