Tuesday, March 17, 2015




" Bahar e ulfat mein ho gayaa jo gark
Chashmaa e zindagi mein jaa niklaa…"
( Josh Malsiyaani )
He who drowned himself in the sea of love ,
Made his appearance in the  water spring of Life  ….

Met a relation of  Balmukand Arsh Malsiyaani son of  Pandit Labhu Ram Josh Malsiyaani recently .Both father and son were well known Urdu  poets from Punjab . Came to know some more facts about Pandit Labhu Ram Josh . Some are shared as under:-

Josh Sahib always wore simple clothes. A Dhoti , Kurta ,  Desi Jooti and a Punjabi Pugrree was all that he wore during summers . In winter season  he would  always wear a black coat over a shirt.  He looked like a perfect farmer who had nothing to do with poetry. Though  his son  Balmukand Arsh Malsiyaani  was a senior officer with Govt of India , Josh never changed his living style when he lived with his son. He ate Moong   Daal  and Chapaati , never touched  liquor and was a vegetarian all along his life .  He smoked  Hookah which he carried along with him  while he was travelling away from his home.Quite often, during a Mushaira , when Hookah was not  permitted on the stage , he asked for the cheapest  "Red Lamp"  cigarettes .Simple dress and simpler  eating habits remained  his lifelong companions .
His needs in life were almost nil   and that is why ne never complained of his poverty  .He never got excited by praise in Mushairas but was always supportive of new and talented poets .He spent his time either playing chess or writing poetry .

Born in village Malsian near Nakodar( district Jalandhar) , Labhu Ram Josh belonged to a family of Saraswat Brahmins that  earned livelihood from trading in Gurr or Jaggery . Malsian is a  village located in Shahkot Tehsil of Jalandhar district in Punjab with a population about 2000.

Josh''s father drank, ate and enjoyed his  own life at Peshawar were he had set up his JAGGERY business believing that the family back home  would live on charity or help from relatives . On account of this  irresponsible  attitude of his father, the family had to live in extreme poverty .Sometimes  some financial  help  or  support  came from some close relatives of his mother. Josh was attached to his mother since his childhood.

Josh felt disgusted with trading profession as his father suffered losses and the family came under heavy debt. . His father drank himself to death .After the death of his father , Josh joined as a  Persian cum Urdu teacher in a primary school to earn something for the family that was almost starving .  Though a brilliant boy in his school  , Josh  could not continue his studies and learn English language  due to  unforeseen  family circumstances . He,  however completed  "Munshi Fazil" and Adeeb Faazil " degrees  .He served as  teacher   in  Nakodar  town near Jalandhar for  almost all his life. In thought and deeds,he remained a Gandhian all along his life.

In 1940,he published his poetic collections in a book titled " BAADA E SARJOSH "

It is also a fact that he never encouraged  his son Balmukand Arsh for writing Urdu poetry.  Amongst his pupils , Sahir Hoshiarpuri  from Punjab carried forward his style . " Kaun Kehtaa hai Mohabbat ki Zubaan hotii hai.. Yeh haqeeqat to Nigaahon se Bayaan Hotii hai " is a popular gazal of  Sahir Hoshiarpuri sung by late  Jagjt Singh. Naresh Kumar ' 'Shaad 'was another illustrious disciple of Josh Malsiyaani.
 Josh  had taken lessons from Daag Dehlavi whom he met in 1902 . later he   wrote poetry  in Daag’s style . He belonged to Delhi School of urdu poetry . I quote some couplets 

(Na- shagufta hi rahi dil ki Kali 
Mausam e gul baarhaa aataa rahaa ..)

( Maut ki zadd se bach gaya jo koyee
Uss ko umer e daraaz ne Maara )

( Balaa se koyee haathh maltaa rahay
Teraa husn saanchay mein daltaa rahay )

( karuun sharah e junoon kyonkar khiradmandon ki mehfil mein
Yeh woh nuqte hain jin ko ahle daanish kam samjhatein hain)

( Teray andaaz par umar e ravaan kuchh shaq guzartaa hai 
Liye jaati hai tu mujh ko kidhar aahistaa Aahistaa )

( Zindagi kuchh bhi nahin soz e mohabbat ke bagair 
aag uss dil ko lagay jo nahin khwahaan tera )

( Gilaa na meharbaani ka to sab se sun liya tum ne 
Tumhaari meharbaani ki shikaayat hum bhi rakhtein hain)

(Jab duvayein bhi kuchh assar na karein
Kya karein sabr hum agar na karein
Dastaan khatm ho hi jaayegi
Aap qisse ko mukhtsar na karein)

His poem "NAYA KASHMIR "remains amongst the finest poems written on Kashmir..I quote some lines..

Aey tamaashaai bahut kuchh tuune ki sair e jahaan 
Ab zara Kashmir mein aa kar nayaa kashmir dekh

Eik muddat se hai chashm e gair lalchaai huyii
Be gunaahi ki khataa masoom ki taqseer dekh.

Sohbat e sheikh o birahman par nazar kar gaur se,
Aarti ko hamnawaa e naraa o Taqbeer dekh..

Ranjh o gham mein dekh iss ka hausalaa iss ka jigar,
Aafaton mein iss ke isstaqlaal ki tasveer dekh..

Tuune har taameer mein takhreeb dekhi hai magar,
Aey tamaahsaai yahaan takhreeb mein taameer dekh..


Josh Malsiyani’s poetry and contribution finds place amongst fifty-two poets whose lives and works have been discussed in Malik Ram's  monumental work - Tazkirah e muasireen, Vol.4. Sahitya  Akademi has published a beautiful monograph  on Josh Malsiyaani. The monograph has been  authored by Bhupendra Parihar. Josh was decorated with Padamshri by Government of India.The University of California in the US has digitalised his work "Maktubat-i Josh Malsiyani banam Raza". In Punjab, he earned a fond name "Nakodar Ka Sant".

( Avtar Mota )

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\.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.