December 26, 2009

In Tight Hug

Come closer. More. Even more. Now for a moment try to forget from where you came and to where you have to go. Close your eyes for a moment. After opening the eyes take three deep breaths. Caress your lips with your tongue and now read…

What you did after reading above few lines was not wastage of time. It was an exercise to feel what I am going to tell you. I have seen a passionate hug. A hug as romantic as journey of a lover’s fingers in beloved’s long hairs, a hug as tight as  the lid of hot water bottle, a hug as pious as the closeness of our two hands in the position of prayer and a hug as long as a lonely night.

It was Friday, a real good Friday for me, when I left my home around 9AM. My shadow was with me, and I want to tell you that I love her a lot. She was looking in to my eyes with a smile on perfect cut of lips. I smiled in response without effort. Because whenever she comes she comes as a smile on my lips.

She was aware that I am going. Still she asked lovingly, “So, are you going?”

Again I smiled in response.

She continued the conversation, “I am really happy for you that you are taking a step ahead.”

I replied, “True, a step ahead with you.”

“You know this time I shall not be sad after your departure, Just because you are moving ahead.” She said and I realized that I was really moving ahead with my luggage trolley. I pushed the trolley towards a corner of the airport. My desire to talk to my shadow was at peak. Although when we talk she owns the ninety percent portion of our conversations. Have you ever heard your shadow speaking? Boosting your morals, taking you to the other world where nothing matters. She said that I know you will rock there. Just then ground staff announced about Chennai flight. I hugged her in such a manner so that she enters back into me.

Chennai. It was not my first visit in that city but the excitement was as if I am going there first time and that’s too as state guest and to meet the king of Madras. No he was not the king but Madras appears on the world map due to him. He is Mozart of Madras, A very simple, soft and sincere guy, who conquered the world of music with his original work and sheer passion.

He knows only one word in this verbose world and that world is devotion. Devotion towards music and devotion towards Allah, he is really part of God more than we are, He is Allah Rakha Rahman. After meeting him I realized that love can take you at any height on this earth. Love can make you Saint and Satan. Love can take you to Heaven or Hell. Love can break you into pieces and also can keep you in peace.

I stayed for three days with Rehman and I always find him in the tight embrace of music. I always saw that Saraswati is sitting on his left. I always saw that unsung melodies are floating on his lips. I always saw that he is in the tight hug of musical notes.  I wonder why people say that he is a music director. A. R. Rehman is not a music director, he is music creator in true sense. Only I know that Humbleness is nick name of Rehman. Long live the Mozart of Madras.


Once There Was A Lover

No, I am not telling any false tale. Its true and it will remain true forever. Once there was a lover, a true lover, who was in love with his beloved like a crazy soul. He was living in a very small village. You please try to guess his name and I will try to give you some clues of his love story.

This lover was from Punjab, a culturally and agriculturally very rich state. He was in his teens when he first realized that living like a routine guy is not his cup of tea. He is meant for some big things, and for him nothing was bigger than ISHQ.

He was a very tender guy, very smart, and very intelligent as well. No you are guessing wrong he was not RANJHA. He was more intense lover. In his teens he imagined about his beloved and fell in love with her. When the other guys of his age were trying to borrow the thoughts from their elders, he was trying to find new ways to get that unexplainable beauty, which was making him crazy day and night.

Every moment of his life he uses to spend in dreams of that beauty, in his every dream he saw her in the bridal dress. Sometimes he imagines that he is flying on the horse of courage with his bride in his lap. He was courageous, eloping with beloved or bride was not beyond his reach or imagination. Any guess about this lover? No again you guessed wrong he was not MIRZA.

But that lover was aware that he alone cannot win his beloved, alone he can’t clean the hurdles of his path, and alone he can’t make a difference to the world, which was created by his imagination and his dreams. So, he searched two friends to help him, and luckily he found equally motivated, imaginative and dedicated friends.

For last clue let me tell you his friends name were Raj Guru n Sukhdev. Yes, this time you guessed right, I was talking about Bhagat Singh, A 23 year old guy of undivided Punjab who laid his life for his beloved ‘Freedom’ with his two best friends. He uses to say that ‘Freedom’ is my bride and I will bring her home one day. March, 23rd 1931 was the day when he was engaged with herand kissed her on the expense of his own life. His two friends were also hanged to feel the freedom of soul from body. We are living with ‘Freedom’ and those guys who gave us this precious beloved has vanished from our memories. Today, it’s 23rd March, and I am remembering them. ARE YOU?


Main Chahta Tha

Main Chahta Tha

Main barsaat ki rimjhim mein

Kisi oonchey makaan ki

Khidki ke paas

Bahut saleeke se sochna chahta tha

Tumhare bare mein meri jaan

Khayalon ke oonche makaan ki

Khidki ke paas

Barsaat ki kanwari boond ke

Dharti ki deh ko milne se pehle

Sochne wala tha main

Tumhari reshami zulfon

Sharbati aankhon

Raseele honthon

Aur meethi baaton ke bare mein

Par nazar chali gayi

Sadak pe thithurte

Do boodhey bachchon par

Ek sookhe peid par

Khaali peit par…

Maine chhalaang laga di khayalon ki khidki se

Roti ka dibba sambhaal kar

Chal diya kaam par…

Halanki barsaat ki rimjhim mein

Main bahut saleeke se sochna chahta tha

Tumhare bare mein meri jaan


Tum aur September

Tum aur September

September ki hawa mein sarsarati

Jis nazam ko

Mausmon ne tumhare naam kar diya tha

Maine un mausmon ka

Ek geet bana kar

Tumhari payal mein piro diya hai

Ab tum apni payal ki jhankaar mein

Saare mausam dekh sakti ho

Dekh sakti ho ki mausamon aur suron ke beech kya rishta hai

Rishtey kaise badal jaate hain

Mausamon aur suron mein

Tum jab bhi rishton, mausamon ya suron ki baat karo

To September ki hawa mein sarsararti

Us nazam ko mat bhool jata

Jinhey mausamon ne

Tumhare naam kar diya tha

Tumhara naam

Khushboo ki tarah phail gaya tha hawa mein

Maine kaha

Hawa ke kaagaz par peid pattiyon ki kalam se

Tumhara naam likh raha hai

Jise padh rahi hai saanjh dhale ghar laut te

Panchhiyon ki kataar

Aur saamne peid par chehakti chidiyein

Un chidiyon ki chahak mein

Tum wahi sur paogi

Jo qaid hain tumhari us payal mein

Jismein mausamon ka ek geet bana kar

Maine bhi piroya tha


Random notes

I am student of literature and film and TV writing is no different. The difference between film n TV writing and literature is that in TV-Films stories are written in common man’s language keeping the common man in mind and in literature, particularly contemporary literature talks about common man but not in common man’s language or verb. This is also written in one of the chapters on my Ph.D thesis. “Samkaleen Hindi Kavita Mein Samay Aur Samaj” was my topic in which I defined that present is nothing but a very thin line between past and future.

Things, thoughts and themes keep on changing with time. It is a common statement these days that “ab pehle jaise gaane nahin rahe”. I agree but I want to add in this statement that pehle jaisa insaan kahan raha hai, pehle jaisi soch kahan rahi hai, pehle jaisi society kaha rahi hai?” There was a time when we had leaders like Nehru, Shastri n Gandhi. There was a time when we had Dhyan Chand, Aslam Sherkhan, Dhanraj Pilley in Indian hockey team. There was a time when we had natural actors like Moti Lal, Dilip Kumar n Balraj Sahni, they never bothered about their six pecks, here, what I am trying to say that it depends upon societies taste, and every art form is mirror of society. A society produced Bedi, Manto n Abbas, the other society is producing todays writers. And I am sure the next generation will give same type of statement to their contemporary writers. No writer is good or bad but readers or viewer’s choice n taste makes them so.

I feel gap between literature and cinema should be bridged somewhere. And yes this can be done easily, gap can be bridged and in some cases film makers are already doing that. Films like Tare Zameen Par, Khuda ke Liye, Praneeta and Teen Patti or 3 Idiots, Firaaq are examples.

And any type of writing or involvement is a full time job.  Even Lyrics writing is full time job for those who believes in

“gazal mein badish-o-alfaaz he nahin kaafi,

Jigar ka khoon bhi kuchh chahiye asar ke liye”.

A soulful lyric needs devotion n dedication of writer.

Still I think that few things more are needed for good writing. First of all, the sense of differentiation between good and bad writing is must. The sense of new n changing trends of society is also required. The deep understanding of human psychology and knowledge of language in which you want to write are few basic tools a writer needs. Above all a writer needs heart and mind in place.

As here I have to talk about myself, I am a very previllaged guy as far as language is concerned. I am from muslim family and our cultures language is Urdu, I belong to Punjab so my native society’s language is Punjabi and I did Ph. D in Hindi. And one language more society still trying to teach me, that is English. I know I am very bad student of that language.

Although a writer is writer but personally I like lyrics writing then dialogue writing and then script or screenplay writing. This order is in that case if I am not writing the whole film.

I always love to work with with every director and music director who has passion for his work. As a student of literature I like Nirala, Shamsher  Bahadur singh, Dushyant kumar, Kumar Ambuj, uday prakash in Hindi, Galib, Mir, Faiz, firaaq, basher badr, Wasim Barailvi in Urdu and I like Wordsworth, Keats, Yeats, John Donne, Edmund Spencer and I also like Rasul Hamzatov, Nazim hikmat n Kajuko also. Basically I like every writer in every language who does not write with pen but heart.

In my spare time I want to read anything which attracts. Sometimes Trends, Faces n Actions of people beside books.

For me Success is nothing but appreciation of your hard work by God and people in general. No one thought that Jab We Met or Love Aaj Kal or Ajab Prem ki Gazab Kahani will be successful ventures. But yes the process of making them was enjoyed by me n all involved and that’s the only key to success.

“Shohrat ki bulandi to pal bhar ka tamasha hai,

Jis shaakh pe baithe hain vo toot bhi sakti hai.”

I also feel that Lyrics writers are getting better dues then screenplay or dialogue writers in terms of credit [but not in terms of cash]. Because only lyricists find place on posters and script writers hardly find that place. Any film buff can name 5 lyricists but no one can name 5 script writers.

I tried to direct 3 small films also just because I want to help some road side school for poor children and after a thought I decided to make some short movies for them involving them and make a DVD and sell it in foreign market. One of my friend settled in US helped me in selling. Because I was putting in money so budgets was not enough to hire a good or even bad director. So I directed myself. My friend sold around 5 thousand DVD’s in US to raise money for those poor children.

When I was doing this I wrote:

“Do chaar nahin dus bees nahin

Ab poori khalkat bolegi

Ab chhod munafa laalach ka

Bebaak mohabbat bolegi

Tera pyar nafa

Tera pyar sila…

Chal Haath Mila.

Bang Bang Slang

It’s true that young generation is not working on their language but being the part of Hindustani society they know fair Hindi and yes very little Urdu that’s why we lyricists are trying to incorporate English. Basically I want to write in that language only which young people understand. I always try to use conversational language to tackle this problem. Your thought should be good and nice, in which language the thought is being said does not matter.

It’s good that now a day lyrics are not just fillers of words. They are coming forward and coming very big way. Because the young brigade of directors and producers realized that without good lyrics they cannot give age and longevity to song, even after having good composition and singer in hand.

I mean good writing depends on the choice n taste of directors n producers. A lyricist is lyricist…if he has range then he could write any kind of song. Here I want to quote 2 of my favorite lyricists, first Sahir sahib he wrote “Ye duniya agar mil bhi jaye to kya hai” in Pyasa as well as “Kara lo teil malish”…Majrooh Sahib also wrote “Hum hain mata-e-kucha-o-bazaar ki tarah”…and he also wrote B A T bat bat maiyne balla, C A T cat cat Maiyne billi…but I want to underline here that a director can’t be good director if he/she does not have taste for music.

Some people feel that Urdu as a lungauge is fading out but according to me Urdu is not Dead and can never be,  JODHA AKBAR a period film was full of Urdu…and urdu was never be preference language of Cinema. The preferred language was Hindustani. Even today preferred language is Hindustani and now a day what a normal Hindustani speak you know.

I am remembering a Punjabi couplet about languages of a rekown urdu poet Prem Barbatni:
“Kis nu main apna kahan kis nu kahan begana
Punjabi hai je maa meri udru meri mehboob hai”
[ To whom I should say mine
To whom I should say not mine
If Punjabi is my mother
Urdu is my beloved ]