20
October

حسینہ معین

انٹرویو : عذرا انتصار

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حسینہ معین پاکستان کی معروف ڈرامہ رائٹر ہیں۔ اُن کا نام سپرہٹ ڈرامے کی علامت سمجھا جاتا ہے۔دل کی تاروں کو چھیڑتی محبت‘ نازک احساسات کی ترجمانی کرتے ڈائیلاگ اور اعلیٰ پائے کے مزاح کی جو کوالٹی

حسینہ نے دی آج تک کوئی ان کی ہمسری نہ کر سکا۔ماہنامہ ہلال کے لئے ان سے کی جانے والی گفتگو پیشِ خدمت ہے۔

 

س۔ ہمیں اپنی ابتدائی زندگی کے بارے میں کچھ بتائیے،بچپن کیسا گزرا؟

ج۔ میرابچپن عام بچوں کی طرح گزرا۔ ہم لوگ 5 بہنیں اور 3 بھائی تھے۔میں اپنے والدین کی چوتھی اولاد تھی۔میرے والد صاحب کوبیٹیوں سے بہت محبت تھی۔نانا، نانی،چچا،چچی،ماموں، خالائیں بہت پیار کرنے والے لوگ تھے۔ میرے والد آرمی میں سویلین سائیڈپر تھے۔ قیامِ پاکستان کے موقع پران کو آپشن دیا گیا تھا کہ آپ پاکستان میں رہیں گے یا انڈیا میں؟تو میرے والد نے پاکستان جانے کا فیصلہ کیا۔ ہمیں بذریعہ ٹرین بمبئی بھیجا گیا۔ گارڈز ہمارے ساتھ تھے۔ہم لوگ چھوٹے چھوٹے تھے۔ بڑا مزا آرہا تھا‘ٹرین کی چھکا چھک کے ساتھ‘ ہم بچوں کا جوش و خروش دیدنی تھا۔ ہم بھاگ کر کبھی ایک سیٹ پر جا بیٹھتے کبھی دوسری پر۔ ہمارے لبوں پر ایک ہی نعرہ تھا ’’پاکستان زندہ باد‘‘ جس کو سن کر ماں کی چھلکتی آنکھوں کے ساتھ چہرے پر مسکراہٹ دوڑ جاتی۔ ماں کو اپنے عزیزوں سے بچھڑنے کا دُکھ تھا اور ہمیں اپنے آزاد وطن پاکستان جانے کی خوشی۔ میرا پہلا سفر، میری پہلی ہجرت، میری پہلی محبت، میرا پاکستان ٹھہرا۔۔۔۔۔

 

پاکستان پہنچنے کے بعد والد صاحب کی ٹرانسفر پنڈی میں ہوئی تھی۔ سارا شہر خالی تھا‘ ہمیں ایڈمنسٹریشن والوں نے کہا آپ جو مکان کہیں گے ہم کھول دیں گے۔لیکن والد صاحب رضا مند نہ ہوئے کیونکہ اس میں لوگوں کا سامان رکھا ہوا تھا‘ تو شروع میں آکر ہوٹل میں رہے۔بعد میں گھر کرائے پر لیا ۔یہاں جو پڑوسی بچے ملے ان کے ساتھ کھیل کود میں وقت اچھاگزرا۔ زندگی اس وقت بڑی خوبصورت لگتی تھی۔

 

س۔ تعلیم کہاں سے حاصل کی؟

ج۔ بعدمیں میرے والد صاحب کا تبادلہ لاہور ہو گیا۔ میٹرک میں نے ماڈل ٹاؤن سکول لاہور سے کیا تھا۔اس کے بعد کراچی چلے گئے۔میرے مین سبجیکٹس اردواورانگریزی لٹریچر تھے‘ جو مجھے بہت پسند تھے۔ ماسٹرز جنرل ہسٹری میں کیا‘ اس کے ساتھ بی ایڈ بھی کیا۔ ڈاکٹر محمود حسین ہمارے ہیڈ آف ڈیپارٹمنٹ تھے۔بہت پیارے انسان تھے اورمیرا بہت خیال کرتے تھے۔ سکول‘ کالج‘ یونیورسٹی کا دور میری زندگی کا بہترین دور تھا۔کالج میں‘ میں بہت شرارتی تھی‘ مجھے دِیول کہا جاتا تھا۔ہماری پرنسپل مسز رشید احمد بہت اچھی تھیں۔اکثر میری شکایت ہو جاتی تھی اور مجھے آفس میں بلا لیا جاتا وہ مجھے دیکھ کرکہتیں تم پھر آگئیں،لیکن کوئی سزا نہ دیتیں، وہ کہتی تھیں یہ بچی اتنی معصومیت سے شرارت کرتی ہے کہ کچھ کہنے کو جی نہیں کرتا۔

 

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س۔زمانہء طالب علمی میں کیا بننا چاہتی تھیں؟

ج۔میں کچھ بھی نہیں بننا چاہتی تھی۔ میرا کوئی خواب نہیں تھا۔ (ہنستے ہوئے)۔جب میٹرک کا امتحان ہو رہا تھاتو میری والدہ پریشان حال گھومتی تھیں اور میری بڑی بہنوں سے کہتی تھیں کہ خدا کے لئے اسے کچھ پڑھا دو۔ جس طرح یہ کھیلتی پھرتی ہے یہ تو پاس تک نہیں ہو سکتی۔ہم لوگ ماڈل ٹاؤن کی سڑکوں پر کرکٹ کھیلا کرتے تھے۔پڑھائی کا خیال تک نہیں تھا۔

 

س۔لکھنے کا شوق کیسے پیدا ہوا؟

ج۔اس وقت ٹی وی تو تھا نہیں اس لئے ریڈیو ہی سنا کرتے تھے ۔کالج کے زمانے میں ہی مجھے لکھنے کا موقع ملا۔ اس وقت میں سیکنڈ ائیر میں تھی۔ شان الحق حقی کی بیگم سلمیٰ آپاہماری اردو کی لیکچرر تھیں۔انہیں اندازہ تھاکہ میری اردو بہت اچھی ہے۔ جب ریڈیو پاکستان سے طلباوطا لِبات کا جشن تمثیل ہوا تو ہمارے کالج میں ایک لیٹر آیا کہ20منٹ کا ایک ڈرامہ چاہئے۔ سلمیٰ آپا نے مجھے لکھنے کو کہا۔میں نے کہاکہ ڈرامہ تو مجھے لکھنا ہی نہیں آتا۔وہ کہنے لگیں‘ جو کچھ سوچتی ہو وہ لکھ دو۔ میں نے کالج میں بیٹھ کر ہی دو تین دن میں ایک کامیڈی لکھی‘جوسلمیٰ آپا نے بھجوا دی۔آغا ناصر صاحب نے وہ ڈرامہ پڑھا‘ ان کو بہت اچھا لگا۔ انہوں نے اس کوخود پروڈیوس کیااورمیرے پہلے ڈرامے کو ہی انعام مل گیا۔یہ وہ موقع تھا جواللہ نے مجھے دیا۔ بی اے تک میں ریڈیو پاکستان کے لئے ڈرامے لکھتی رہی۔یونیورسٹی جا کر یہ سلسلہ رک گیا۔انہی دنوں جب ٹی وی آیا تو ان لوگوں نے میرا ریڈیو کاایک ڈرامہ بھول بھلیاں لیا اورمجھے کہا کہ اسے ٹی وی کے لئے لکھوں۔ ڈرامہ کامیاب ہو گیا۔یہ پہلا موقع تھا جب میں لوگوں کے سامنے آئی۔ اس کے بعد میں نے عید کا خصوصی کھیل’’عیدمبارک‘‘لکھا۔رومینٹک کامیڈی تھی، اس میں نیلوفر، علیم اور شکیل تھے۔ خوش قسمتی سے وہ بھی کامیاب ہو گیا۔اس کے بعد مجھے عظیم بیگ چغتائی کی کتاب پر ماڈرن دور کے مطابق سیریل لکھنے کو کہا گیا تو میں نے اسے ’’شہزوری‘‘کے نام سے لکھا۔اس زمانے میں یہ ڈرامہ بہت مشہوراور کامیاب ہوا۔اس میں مَیں نے اپنا ایک جملہ ’’میں بہت برا آدمی ہوں۔‘‘شامل کیا‘ یہ ڈائیلاگ بہت مقبول ہوا۔

 

س۔ کامیابی کے حصول میں کبھی کوئی مشکل پیش آئی؟

ج۔ مجھے ہمیشہ خدا نے کامیابی دی‘ میں نے اس کے لئے کبھی کوئی کوشش نہیں کی۔نہ ہی میں کبھی کسی کے پاس سکرپٹ لے کر گئی۔مواقع مجھے خود ہی ملتے چلے گئے۔خدا نے جس کو جو بنانا ہوتا ہے وہ بنا دیتا ہے۔جیسے کالج میں تھی تو ریڈیو سے پیغام آگیا۔یو نیورسٹی سے فارغ ہوئی تو ٹی وی والوں نے بلا لیا۔جب ’’شہزوری‘‘ختم ہوئی تو مجھے ایک اور ناول کی ڈرامائی تشکیل کرنے کو کہا گیا۔ میں نے کہا کہ میں ایک اور یجنل سٹوری لکھنا چاہتی ہوں۔ سکرپٹ پروڈیوسر نے کہا کہ ٹی وی پر ہفتے میں ایک ڈرامہ لکھا جاتا ہے۔وہی ریکارڈ ہوتا ہے۔ اگر آپ درمیان میں رُک گئیں تو کیا ہوگا۔ تو میں نے کہا ایسا نہیں ہو گا۔ انشاء اللہ۔ پھر میں نے ان کو ’’کرن کہانی‘‘لکھ کر دی۔جب میں نے ڈرامہ ’’پرچھائیاں‘‘ لکھا اور اس کی پہلی قسط دیکھی تو مجھے اس کی پروڈکشن اورکاسٹ پسند نہیں آئی۔ حالانکہ یہ ڈرامہ بہت بڑے پروڈیوسر نے کیا تھا۔ میں نے مزید لکھنے سے انکار کر دیا۔ لوگ حیران رہ گئے،کہ یہ کس طرح ہو سکتا ہے اس کاتو اعلان ہو چکا ہے۔ اس وقت کے لوگ بہت عزت اور خیال کرنے والے تھے۔ مجھے کہا گیا آپ بتائیں کہ کس سے ڈرامہ کروائیں گی۔ تومیں نے کہا کہ یہ ڈرامہ شیریں اور محسن علی ریکارڈ کریں گے۔ اسلام آباد سے ساحرہ کاظمی اور راحت کاظمی کو بلایا گیا اور انہوں نے اس ڈرامے میں کام کیا۔حالانکہ اس وقت ان کی بچی مشکل سے چار یا پانچ مہینے کی تھی۔ پرچھائیاں بہت کامیاب رہا۔ میں ان پروڈیوسرصاحب کی بڑائی کا اعتراف ضرور کروں گی کہ وہ ایک لفظ زبان پر نہیں لائے ۔

 

ہماری فوج دنیا کی بہترین فوج ہے۔میرے د ل کی نیک تمنائیں اور خواہشات ان کے ساتھ ہیں۔اللہ ان کو ہمیشہ سلامت رکھے۔اور ایک خواہش ہے کہ وہ میرے ملک کو بچا لیں کیونکہ مجھے اپنے ملک سے محبت ہے اور فوج ہمارے ملک کی محافظ۔

 

س۔ کس ڈائریکٹر اور پروڈیوسر نے آپ کے ڈرامے کو بہترین شکل دی؟

ج۔ محسن اور شیریں، شہزاد خلیل ،ساحرہ کاظمی اوررعنا شیخ۔ شروع میں محسن علی اور شیریں ڈرامہ پروڈیوس کرتے۔ انکل عرفی‘ پرچھائیاں، بندش اور دھند پروڈیوس کیا۔بد قسمتی سے شیریں بیمار پڑگئی اسے کینسر ہو گیا۔وہ لندن چلی گئی۔اس کی وفات کے بعد میں نے سال بھر کام نہیں کیا۔شعیب منصور نے مجھ سے کہا کہ آپ میرے لئے کچھ لکھیں۔ میں ان کے بارے میں کچھ تذبذب کا شکار تھی کہ یہ اتنے چھوٹے سے ہیں‘ پتہ نہیں کر بھی پائیں گے یا نہیں۔تو انہوں نے کہا کہ آپ ایک موقع دے کر تو دیکھیں۔ جس دن میں نے ہامی بھری کہ چلو تمہارے لئے کچھ لکھ دوں گی۔تو شعیب منصور نے باقاعدہ سجدہ شکر ادا کیا کہ آپ نے حامی تو بھری۔ ’’ان کہی‘‘ میں نے ان کے لئے لکھا۔اس میں محسن صاحب بھی شامل تھے۔کیونکہ شہناز شیخ نے جب سنا کہ شعیب منصورکریں گے تو اس نے کہا یہ تو بہت چھوٹے سے ہیں، یہ کیسے کریں گے تو میں نے کہا کہ نہیں محسن صاحب بھی ہیں۔ پھر میں نے شہزاد خلیل صاحب کے ساتھ ڈرامہ ’’تنہائیاں‘‘کیا۔

میرے ساتھ یہ بات بھی بہت عجب رہی کہ میرے ساتھ دو ڈائیریکٹرز کام کرتے تھے اور میں اکیلی لکھتی تھی۔اتنا اتفاق ہونا بہت کم ہوتا ہے ۔ ’’ان کہی‘‘ کو شعیب اور محسن علی نے کیا۔پھر ان لوگوں کا تبادلہ ہو گیا۔ ’’تنہائیاں‘‘ شہزاد خلیل صاحب نے کیا۔پھر ساحرہ کے ساتھ ’’دھوپ کنارے‘‘ اور ’’آہٹ‘‘ کیا۔ ’’آہٹ‘‘ پاپولیشن کے متعلق تھااور اس وقت پاپولیشن کا نام لینا ہی بہت خطرناک تھا۔ایک تنظیم کی خواتین ہمارے پاس آئیں کہ آپ نے فحش نگاری کی ہے۔میں نے کہاکہ اگر پریگننٹ عورت کو دکھانا فحش نگاری ہے تو پھر پوری دنیا ہی فحش ہے۔ اس کے بعد خواجہ نجم الحسن کے ساتھ تاریخی کھیل ’’تان سین‘‘ کیا۔جو بہت کامیاب رہا۔ ایک انڈین سنگر نے مجھ سے کہا کہ اس کے سارے گانے آپ کو فری میں کر کے دینے کو تیار ہوں۔میں نے کہا یہ انڈیا اور پاکستان کا معاملہ ہے‘ اس میں مشکل ہو جاتا ہے‘ میں پھر کبھی آپ سے کام کرواؤں گی۔

 

س۔ آپ کا ہر ڈرامہ اور ہر ہیروئن سپر ہٹ ہوتی تھی‘ اس کی کیا وجہ ہے؟

ج۔ وہ اس لئے کہ ہم نئی لڑکی ڈھونڈ کر لاتے تھے‘جو ہمیں پسند آجاتی تھی۔ اس کے گھر جاکر گھر والوں کی خوشامد کر کے ان کو رضا مند کر کے لاتے تھے۔ شہناز کو میں نے دیکھا ہوا تھا وہ میری بڑی فین تھی۔ میں اور شعیب ان کے گھر پہنچ گئے ،جب میں نے ’’ان کہی‘‘کے لئے اسے کہا تو اس نے انکار کر دیا۔ میں نے کہاکہ اگر تم یہ کریکٹر نہیں کرو گی تو ہم ’’ان کہی‘‘کریں گے ہی نہیں، اس پر اس نے کہا کہ،اچھا ڈائیریکٹر کا بتائیے تو میں نے شعیب کے ساتھ محسن علی کا نام لے لیا کہ شاید مرعوب ہو جائے۔محسن علی صاحب کا کام اتنا زیادہ تھا کہ وہ فوراً راضی ہو گئی۔اس طرح شہناز کو لائے۔ شہلا احمد کو انکل عرفی میں لائے۔ ہمارے جاننے والوں کی بچی تھی۔ ان کے والد کی بہت خوشا مد کی۔ اسی طرح نادیہ خان کی امی کو میں نے ڈرامہ ’’پل دو پل‘‘ کے لئے فون کیا۔ نادیہ کے والد فوجی افسر تھے۔ ان کی امی نے کہا کہ دیکھئے نادیہ کے والد کی اجازت کے بغیر میں کچھ نہیں کہہ سکتی۔ میں نے کہا پریشانی کی کوئی بات نہیں۔ریکارڈنگ میں‘ میں ساتھ ساتھ ہوتی ہوں۔ آپ ان کے والد سے پوچھ لیجئے۔ اسی شام ان کی امی کا فون آگیاکہ نادیہ کے والد کہہ رہے ہیں کہ اگر حسینہ کا ڈرامہ ہے تو مجھے کوئی اعتراض نہیں۔ نادیہ بہت اچھی بچی تھی۔ہماری ٹیم بہت اچھی تھی۔ہم لوگ ایک فیملی کی طرح کام کرتے تھے۔آج کل پیسے اور سفارش کے زور پر کام چل رہا ہے۔ہمارے زمانے میں نہ کسی کو پیسے کی پروا تھی نہ سفارش کی۔

 

س۔ اتنی ساری ہیروئنوں میںآپ کی پسندیدہ ہیروئن کون تھی؟

ج۔ شہناز شیخ اور شہلا احمد ۔

 

س۔ ڈرامہ سلسلے کا کیاسلسلہ تھا؟

ج۔ اس کے لئے مرینہ نے آکر مجھ سے اجازت لی کہ ہم اس کا سیکوئیل بنا رہے ہیں۔پہلے تو میں اسے منع کرتی رہی کہ ایک دفعہ جو چیز ہٹ ہو جائے اسے دوبارہ نہیں بنانا چاہئے کیونکہ وہ دوبار ہ ویسی نہیں بنتی۔لوگ اسے تنقیدی نظر سے دیکھتے ہیں۔اس کے اصرار پر میں نے مشورہ دیا کہ تم کوئی بہت اچھا ڈائریکٹر لو کیونکہ شہزادخلیل صاحب بہت اچھے ڈائریکٹر تھے، انہوں نے ڈرامے کو سنبھالا تھا۔تم اس کو سنبھال نہیں پاؤ گی۔ انہیں دنوں مجھے بیرونِ ملک جانا تھا۔میری غیر موجودگی میں ان لوگوں نے محمد احمد سے لکھوایااور خود ہی کر لیا۔ ظاہر ہے وہ خراب ہی ہونا تھا۔ میں نے مرینہ سے کہا کہ اس ڈرامے میں سے میرا نام نکال دو تو مشکل یہ پڑ گئی کہ جن لوگوں نے سپانسر کیا تھا، انہوں نے کہا کہ اگرحسینہ کا نام نہ ہوا تو ہم لیں گے نہیں۔ اس پریشانی کے عالم میں مرینہ میرے پاس آکر روئی تو میں نے کہا کہ چلو جیسا بھی ہے جانے دو مگر میں نے دیکھا نہیں۔کیونکہ میں کسی چیز کو خراب ہوتے نہیں دیکھ سکتی۔

 

س۔ آپ نے کبھی کوئی ناول یا افسانہ لکھا؟

ج۔ میں نے ایک ناول لکھا ہے ’’پل صراط کا سفر‘‘لکھنے کی بڑی چاہ ہے، دل بھی چاہتا ہے مگر ڈرامے لکھنے کی وجہ سے وقت ہی نہیں ملتا۔لیکن لکھوں گی ضرور انشاء اللہ۔

 

س۔ آپ کے ڈراموں میں دل کو چھو لینے والی محبت کی کوالٹی نظر آتی ہے تو کیا کبھی خو دبھی محبت کی ؟

ج۔جی ہاں بالکل میں نے بھی محبت کی ،یہ بڑی پرسنل سی چیزہوتی ہے۔اگرآپ کا دل سچا ہو اور آپ ہر جذبے میں سچے ہوں تو محبت بھی سچی ہوتی ہے۔نفرت بھی سچی ہوتی ہے نفرت کرنا تو خیر میں نے سیکھا ہی نہیں۔اسی لئے آپ کو شاید میرے کرداروں میں منفی کردارکبھی نہیں ملیں گے۔

 

میڈیا کا اثربہت گہرا ہوتا ہے۔آج کل کے بچوں کو آپ کیا دکھا رہے ہیں۔اگر بچوں کو الزام دیں گے تو غلط ہے۔ماں باپ،بہن بھائی سب عشق کر رہے ہیں۔ راتوں کو مل رہے ہیں گھر وں سے بھاگ رہے ہیں۔ اگر اس قسم کی چیزیں دکھائیں گے تو پھرکیا انجام ہو گا۔آج کل ایسی ایسی چیزیں دکھائی جا رہی ہیں،کہ ڈر لگتا ہے کہ اگر بچے نے اس کا مطلب ہی پوچھ لیا تو کیا جواب دیں گے؟

 

س۔ شادی؟

ج۔ امی کی خواہش تو تھی کہ میں شادی کروں۔مگر مجبور نہیں کیا ان کا خیال تھا میں خود کرلوں گی اور خود میں نے کی نہیں۔

 

س۔ آپ کے ڈراموں میں مزاح کا معیار سب سے جدا ہے اس کی کیا وجہ ہے؟

ج۔ بقول شیکسپئیر کے ٹریجڈی اور کامیڈی کے درمیان ایک بہت باریک سی لکیر ہوتی ہے۔اگر آپ اس لائن کو کراس کر دیں گے تو تریجڈی کامیڈی بن جاتی ہے اور کامیڈی ٹریجڈی بن جاتی ہے۔اسی طرح مزاح اور پھکڑ پن میں بھی باریک سی لکیر ہوتی ہے۔اگر آپ اس کو کراس کر جائیں گے تو مزاح پھکڑ پن بن جائے گا۔آج کل جوکچھ دکھایا جا رہا ہے‘ معافی چاہتی ہوں‘ وہ مزاح نہیں ہے‘ کچھ اور ہے۔آپ نے مشتاق احمد یوسفی،شفیق الرحمن اور ابن انشا کا مزاح پڑھا ہو گا۔ تہذیب، تمیز اوراطوار ہم گھر سے سیکھتے ہیں۔

 

س۔ لکھتی کب ہیں؟ کیا شاعری کی طرح اس کا بھی نزول ہوتا ہے؟

ج۔ سب کچھ خدا کی طر ف سے ہوتا ہے اگر انسان چاہے تو خود سے ایک جملہ بھی نہیں لکھ سکتا۔میں ہمیشہ رات کے وقت لکھتی ہوں۔رات کو سکون ہوتا ہے۔جتنا چاہیں لکھیں۔میں فلی یوز کرتی ہوں اپنے آپکو۔جب ٹی وی کے لئے لکھتی تھی تو کمرہ ملا ہوا تھا‘خاموشی ہوتی تھی۔

 

س۔ آپ نے بہت شروع سے ڈرامہ لکھا ،پہلے اور آج کے ڈرامے میں کیا فرق محسوس کرتی ہیں؟

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ج۔ میں نے سیکنڈ ائیر سے لکھنا شروع کیا۔یونیورسٹی کے بعد سے اب تک لکھ رہی ہوں ۔پہلے زمانے اور آج کی چیزوں میں جو فرق ہے وہی فرق ڈرامے میں بھی ہے۔آجکل ڈسپوزیبل چیزیں بنتی ہیں۔بے تحاشہ ڈرامے بن رہے ہیں‘ نہ کسی کو ان کا نام یاد ہوتا ہے نہ کردار۔کمرشل دور ہے ،مارکیٹنگ کے لوگ ڈرامہ خریدتے ہیں۔صرف ریٹنگ کا خیال کیا جاتا ہے۔سب سے بڑی چیز جو ہو رہی ہے،وہ یہ کہ ڈرامے میں عورتوں کو مارا پیٹا جا رہا ہے۔کبھی گھر سے نکالا جا تا ہے اور لوگ کہتے ہیں کہ اس سے ریٹنگ بڑھتی ہے۔کیا گھروں میں ایساہوتا ہے اتنی بد تہذیبی آگئی ہے ۔میں نے توآج تک نہیں دیکھی۔ہر ایک میں ایک ہی کہانی چل رہی ہے۔دو لڑکیاں ایک آدمی‘ دو آدمی ایک لڑکی، سا س بہو کا جھگڑا، ماں بیٹی کا جھگڑااور اب تو خیر دوسرے معاملات اتنے کھلم کھلا دکھائے جا رہے ہیں کہ لگتا ہے ہر گھر میں ہی کچھ نہ کچھ گڑ بڑ ہے۔لڑکی سکول سے بھاگ کر لڑکے کے ساتھ بائک پر جارہی ہے۔بہنیں ایک دوسرے کو کاٹ رہی ہیں،ایک بہنوئی کے لئے لڑ رہی ہیں‘پتہ نہیں کیا ہو رہا ہے۔ اسی طرح ایک بہن کی غیر موجودگی میں دوسری کا نکاح کر کے رخصتی پہلے والے کی کر دی۔ہم حیران پریشان دیکھ رہے ہیں اگر یہ حالات ہیں تو کیا کہہ سکتے ہیں۔ میں توڈرامہ دیکھتی ہی نہیں‘ جو کبھی اتفاقاً نظر پڑی وہی بتا رہی ہوں۔

 

س۔ پاکستانی ڈرامے کا بہترین دور؟

ج۔ ٹی وی آنے سے لے کر 90 کی دہائی کے کچھ سال تک ٹھیک رہا‘ پھر اس کے بعد حالات بگڑنا شروع ہو گئے۔میں نے ضیاالحق کے دور میں پرچھائیاں لکھا تھا۔کسی نے اعتراض نہیں کیا۔کیونکہ اگر آپ ڈھکی چھپی بات سلیقے سے کریں گے ، تو وہ بری نہیں لگتی۔

 

س۔ میڈیا معاشرے پر کس حد تک اثرانداز ہوتاہے؟

ج۔ میڈیا کا اثربہت گہرا ہوتا ہے۔آج کل کے بچوں کو آپ کیا دکھا رہے ہیں۔اگر بچوں کو الزام دیں گے تو غلط ہے۔ماں باپ،بہن بھائی سب عشق کر رہے ہیں۔راتوں کو مل رہے ہیں گھر وں سے بھاگ رہے ہیں۔اگر اس قسم کی چیزیں دکھائیں گے تو پھرکیا انجام ہو گا۔آج کل ایسی ایسی چیزیں دکھائی جا رہی ہیں،کہ ڈر لگتا ہے کہ اگر بچے نے اس کا مطلب ہی پوچھ لیا تو کیا جواب دیں گے؟ اور مزاحیہ ڈراموں کا انداز بالکل پھٹیچر ہے۔ جس میں بہت غلط جملے استعمال ہوتے ہیں۔ گالیاں تک دی جاتی ہیں۔ حرکات و سکنات خراب ہیں‘اس کو مزاح نہیں کہتے۔

 

س۔ اس چیز کو کیسے کنٹرول کیا جا سکتا ہے؟

ج۔ اس کو صرف چینل والے کنٹرول کر سکتے ہیں۔لیکن ا ن کو صرف پیسا بنانا ہے ان کو فکر نہیں ہے کہ یہ اخلاقی گراوٹ آگے چل کر کیا رنگ لائے گی۔ ہم بھارت کی نقل کر رہے یں۔ہماری جو شناخت تھی کہ یہ پاکستانی ڈرامہ ہے‘ وہ ختم ہو گئی ہے۔پاکستانی ڈرامہ دیکھیں تو کبھی وہ انڈین لگتا ہے کبھی ترک۔ ہر چیز کا منہ پیسے سے بند کیا جاتا ہے۔اگر ایسا نہ ہوتا تو اب تک یہ سب کچھ رک چکا ہوتا۔

 

س۔ انڈین اورترک ڈرامے جو آج کل دکھائے جا رہے ہیں ان کے بارے میں کیا کہیں گی؟

ج۔ ترکی اور انڈیا کے چلے ہوئے پرانے ڈرامے ان کو سستے مل جاتے ہیں۔ وہ خرید لاتے ہیں۔ڈبنگ کرکے چلا دیتے ہیں‘ ان میں بعض اچھے بھی ہوتے ہیں۔انڈیا کا کلچر دیکھیے کہ وہ اتنی بھاری ساڑھی اور زیورپہن کر کچن میں کا م کرتی نظر آتی ہیں۔اسی کا اثر ہے کہ ہمارے ہاں فل میک اپ اورآئی شیڈ کے ساتھ لڑکی جاگتی ہے۔میں تو حیران ہوتی ہوں کہ ڈائریکٹر کدھر ہے‘ کیا وہ سو رہا ہے؟

 

س۔ نئے لکھنے والوں میں کوئی رائٹر جو آپ کو پسند ہو؟

ج۔ بھئی سچ بات بتاؤں میں نے تو اب ٹی وی دیکھنا ہی چھوڑ دیا ہے۔کبھی دیکھنے بیٹھوں تو عورتوں پر کیا جانے والا تشدد میں نہیں دیکھ سکتی۔میں نے40سال تک کوشش کی کہ عورت مضبوط ہو گی‘ اپنے پاؤں پر کھڑی ہو گی‘ اپنا مقام بنائے گی‘ اپنا حق لے گی۔وہ ساری چیزیں ایک دم سے ختم ہو گئیں ہیں،اب نہ تو اس کا کوئی حق رہا نہ مقام‘ نہ عزت۔سب کچھ ختم کر دیا گیا۔میں تو بہت مایوس ہو گئی ہوں۔

 

س۔ آپ نے آئی ایس پی آر کے لئے کام کیا؟

ج۔ میں فوجیوں سے بہت متاثر ہوں۔ انہوں نے میرا بہت خیال رکھا۔ پاسنگ آؤٹ پریڈ پر مجھے بلایا۔اعزازی طور پرکاکول میں مجھے بلایا،لکھنے کی فرمائش کی۔ اب میں ان کے لئے لکھوں گی۔خاص طور ان فوجیوں کے لئے جو اپنی جان داؤ پر لگا کر ہماری حفاظت کے لئے لڑ رہے ہیں۔

 

س۔ آپ نے خود اداکاری نہیں کی؟

ج۔ نہیں ۔مجھے شوق نہیں ہے،اور شاید میں کر بھی نہیں پاتی کیونکہ میں بہت شرمیلی ہوں۔

 

س۔ زندگی میں خود پر کب فخرمحسوس ہوا؟

ج۔ مجھے وکٹری سٹینڈ بہت پسند تھا۔میں اپنے سکول میں ہونے والی سپورٹس میں حصہ بھی لیتی تھی لیکن وکٹری سٹینڈ تک کبھی نہیں پہنچی ۔جس وقت مجھے پرائڈ آف پرفارمنس دیا گیاس اس وقت مجھے محسوس ہوا کہ میں وکٹری سٹینڈ پر کھڑی ہوں اورواقعی میں نے کچھ کیاہے۔

 

س۔ پسندیدہ رائٹر؟

ج۔ خلیل جبران اور بہت سے انگلش رائٹرز۔

 

س۔ پسندیدہ شاعرَ ؟

ج۔غالب، میر درد،سودا ،داغ، فراق ،مجاز ،احمد فراز،پروین شاکر، امجد اسلام امجداورفیض بہت زیادہ پسند ہیں۔

 

س۔ موسیقی سے لگاؤ ہے؟

ج۔ بہت زیادہ،مہدی حسن،لتا ، آشا بھوسلے میرے پسندیدہ گلو کار ہیں۔

 

س۔ اب تک کتنے ایوارڈز حاصل کر چکی ہیں؟

ج۔ اللہ کا فضل ہے ہر سیریل پر ایوارڈ ملا۔ایوارڈزسے الماری بھر چکی ہے۔

 

س۔ آپ کی کامیابی کا راز کیا ہے؟

ج۔ دعائیں۔میرے ماں باپ کی ،دوستوں کی ، بھائی بہنو ں کی ان کے بچوں کی سب کی دعا ئیں میرے ساتھ ہیں۔میری ماں ہمیشہ نماز پڑھنے کی تلقین کرتی تھیں۔ انہوں نے سکھایاکہ دعا مانگنے سے سب کچھ مل جاتا ہے۔آپ یقین رکھیں کہ جو کچھ ہو رہا ہے‘ وہ آپ کی بہتری کے لئے ہو رہا ہے،اور جو نہیں ہورہا اس میں بھی آپکی ہی بہتری ہے تو آپ خوش رہیں گے۔

 

س۔فوجی بھائیوں کے لئے کوئی پیغام؟

ج۔مجھے فوج بہت پسند ہے۔یہ ہماری پر سکون نیند کے لئے راتوں کو جاگتے ہیں اور ہماری حفاظت کے لئے اپنی جانیں قربان کرتے ہیں۔ہماری فوج دنیا کی بہترین فوج ہے۔میرے د ل کی نیک تمنائیں اور خواہشات ان کے ساتھ ہیں۔اللہ ان کو ہمیشہ سلامت رکھے۔اور ایک خواہش ہے کہ وہ میرے ملک کو بچا لیں کیونکہ مجھے اپنے ملک سے محبت ہے اور فوج ہمارے ملک کی محافظ ہے۔

 

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31
December

Mr Sarfaraz Bugti, Home Minister of Balochistan

“Seeing beyond perceptions is very important to understand any issue”

Interview By: Asif Jehangir Raja

Question: Awaran and Mushke districts of Balochistan were severly hit by earthquake on 24 September 2013. What is the progress of relief work and how much support you received from Army and FC Balochistan in this regard?

Answer: Balochistan has been badly hit by this catastrophe. FC Balochistan was the first force to reach in that area and start relief activities. It was followed by Pakistan Army and now both forces are doing utmost to help those people in trouble. Corps Commander of Quetta himself visited the the affected areas on very next day and supervised relief operations. As of now, rescue and relief work is almost complete and we are now focusing on rehabilitation phase. Two months’ rations have been distributed among the people, and tents/shelters are also being provided. Army doctors and nurses are providing medical services day and night to the affected people. On behalf of government and people of Balochistan and, on my own behalf, I want to thank Pak Army and FC Balochistan for carrying out relief activities in such an organized, swift and professional manner.

Question: Military troops carrying out relief work have been attacked on numerous occasions by the armed militants. These elements also claim that military is conducting operation in earthquake affected areas. What is situation on ground?

Answer: To put the record straight, I want to clarify to everyone that no military operation is being conducted in any part of Balochistan. It is a mere propaganda by enemies of common masses who do not want poor people to be helped and assisted in any shape. Pak Army and FC have been called to carryout relief activities in earthquake areas on request of provincial government. Despite being attacked, the forces and government have shown restraint and are determined to help those earthquake hit people till the last person is not rehabilitated. The government will improve and reconstruct communication infrastructure in that area and will also help in provision of shelter and other amenities to each and every family.

Question: What measures new provincial government is taking to address law and order situation in the province?

sarfaraz bugti 1Answer: Law and order situation in Balochistan is facing three types of challenges: religious and sectarian violence, armed activities by miscreants (so-called 'angry Baloch' or 'separatist groups') and organized crimes. Sectarian violence or extremism in the name of religion is prevalent in some parts of the country but has also taken its roots in Balochistan. There have been quite a few incidents of this nature in the province previously but our government is taking all measures with full support of federal government, and we are hopeful about settling down of this issue in future. There are four main militant groups that are operating in the province under local and exiled leadership. These groups have more influence in rural areas and hardly have any support in urban belts. This minority is also portrayed on media as 'naraz Baloch'. Federal government has mandated Chief Minister to carryout dialogue with these groups. We are also planning to organize an All Parties Conference (APC) on this issue in December and have decided to take all political parties into confidence about dialogue process with these groups. We also intend to announce timeline for dialogue at the end of APC and shall call for another conference to discuss modalities, if dialogue process fails. However, it should be clear to everyone that dialogue and reconciliation would only take place within constitutional framework of the Federation and writ of the state will be established at all costs. Violence on any pretext is unacceptable and unpardonable. No one has any right to endanger the life of a common man and attack the law enforcement agencies.

We are also taking measures to reduce rate of organized crimes in Quetta and other cities. Although I admit that few incidents of kidnap for ransom did take place in Quetta during our government but we are looking forward to eliminate it all together. I want to make one thing clear that this government is very serious in bringing better environment to the people of the province from every angle; employment, law & order, development, health and, education. We will focus on all areas in coming five years.

Question: Do these armed militant groups enjoy support of common masses?

Answer: No, absolutely not. The strength of these miscreants is not more than 2000 to 3000 which is very less as compared to the total population of about 8 million people. Therefore, around 1% people are claiming to be representative of complete province which is absolutely false and wrong. The majority of the people of Balochistan are peaceful, pro-federation and have never challenged writ of the state. Unfortunately media is giving full coverage to those elements that talk against federation of Pakistan and are miscreants. Instead, those people in majority, who are peaceful and leading lives within bounds of constitution aren't given any coverage which creates misperceptions. I must say that people of Balochistan are as patriotic as any other Pakistani. It is the magic of negative propaganda, vested interests and foreign elements that Balochistan is shown negatively in some media channels and newspapers. In reality, Baloch, Pashtun and other ethnicities living in Balochistan are fully active and eager to take part in development, progress and security of Pakistan.

Question: Foreign NGOs are propagating for not having been given chance to work in earthquake areas. What is the situation on ground?

Answer: The security situation of Awaran is much better than what it used to be few years back. We will provide security to all NGOs who want to work for the people of the area. However, there can be a concern if any NGO is found to be involved in any suspicious activity. In any such eventuality, federal and provincial government shall carry out action as per laws. Although relief work is difficult but government and Pak Army are managing things well on ground even without much assistance from these NGOs.

Question: What, in your opinion, are root causes for problems in Balochistan? Do you relate it to some mistakes of the past?

Answer: I want to request people of Pakistan and Balochistan to understand realities and not follow the perceptions. Seeing beyond perceptions is very important to understand any issue. Being underdeveloped or underprivileged due to any political reason doesn't mean to adopt the path of violence. We have forums available in the shape of Provincial Assembly, National Assembly, Senate where we can register our grievances. We may even come out to protest on roads but, by no means can someone pick up arms against government and start killing innocent people. Change in mindset is very important. People of Balochistan voluntarily joined Pakistan at the time of partition in 1947. Not all Sardars are against development or against Pakistan. These are very few. Many of these tribal leaders hoist flags of Pakistan on 14 August each year but are not given enough coverage in the media. Only so-called 'naraz Baloch' are covered which create negative perceptions.

Question: How do you view recent increased induction of Baloch youth in defence forces?

Answer: I am thankful to Pak Army and General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Chief of Army Staff for adopting the policy to induct Baloch youth in Army. It is a very good step which, not only will provide employment opportunities to the youth of the province but will also prove beneficial for the country in the times to come. I am also thankful to the army for relaxing the induction criteria for the people of Balochistan. It has further strengthened the impression that Pakistan Army has representation from all provinces and it is a national army.

Question: Your views on Pak Army’s role in spreading education in Balochistan?

Answer: We are very thankful to Pakistan Army that it is supervising the education of approximately 22,000 students from Balochistan being undertaken inside and out of the province. Establishment of ‘Military College Sui’ and ‘Sui Educational City’ shall go a long way in changing destiny of the Baloch people. Army has established hostels for Baloch youth in most garrisons where students are being given accommodation and education without any expenses. The infrastructure of education does exist in the province, but unfortunately it was misused by many local tribal leaders in the past. But with education reforms in the province, Pak Army has laid foundation for enlightened Baloch generations. Our progress is associated with the progress of Pakistan. If one province will progress, so shall the country.

Question: What are your comments about role for foreign agencies behind acts of terrorism and violence in Balochistan?

Answer: Balochistan is not only placed on a strategically important location but also contains rich minerals under its surface. International and regional players are playing a negative role to damage Pakistan and increase their influence. Balochistan is a 'gateway' to central Asia, and also closely linked to Iran, China and Afghanistan. Gwadar Port is likely to play a key role in future trade and economic activity. We, Pakistanis, must remain vigilant and defend our national interests. There is existence of farari camps in a neighbouring country that are being used for violence and terrorism inside Balochistan and Pakistan. The world must take notice of this case of 'harbouring terrorism' against Pakistan. Moreover, India has opened so many consulates in Afghanistan which are believed to be used against interests of Pakistan.

Question: What are your sentiments on terrorists' attack on Quaid's Residency at Ziarat?

Answer: The attack on Quaid’s Residency at Ziarat wasn't an isolated targeting of a building but it was an attack on ‘Ideology of Pakistan’ and, it was attack on hearts of the people of Pakistan. To me it was a terrorist activity of an extreme nature and it should be a point of concern for all Pakistanis that even after such a big tragedy, no worthwhile protest was recorded. People from all walks of life were very sad after this incident and were badly pinched. Baloch people are patriotic and were moved after this tragedy.

Question: Your message to those targeting Law Enforcement Agencies?

Answer: My message to all such elements is that they must give up their arms and we are ready to negotiate with them within framework of the Constitution of Pakistan. We can accommodate them if they stop challenging the government and stop their negative activities.

Question: What are your views with regards to the wrong perceptions being created about Gwadar port?

Answer: To me Gwadar port is not only important for Balochistan but is also very vital project for the development of whole country. In line with Prime Minister's vision of economic revival in Pakistan through trade, Gwadar shall become hub of all activities. International players understand its importance and are playing negative role from behind the scenes to create misunderstandings. Government of Balochistan will help federal government in completion of all projects related to Gwadar in earliest possible time.

Question: What in your opinion is the way forward for Balochistan?

Answer: In my opinion, three things should be done in Balochistan: a) Zero tolerance for violence and no one should be allowed to operate farari camps in the province. b) We must focus on good governance in the province and should work for the masses. c) We must provide employment opportunities for the youth of the province.

Moreover, investment in development of communication infrastructure and education reforms shall help to develop the society as a whole. I am against student politics in education institutions which, to me, has always harmed the education standards and environment of the institutions. People of Balochistan believe in Federation and always take pride in being Pakistani.

30
December

Justice (Retired) Dr Javed Iqbal

Interview By: Asif Jehangir Raja

Question: I shall request you to share few memories of Allama Iqbal with us?

Answer: I was twelve years old when Allama Iqbal died in 1938. So I couldn't get much time to spend with him but his personality left a great impact on me which I still carry to this date. Dr Allama Iqbal was a man of values who took pride in own culture, own dress, own language and wanted me to retain my own identity. It was a time when the British were ruling the Subcontinent, so I wasn't allowed to wear English dress, hats and, anything that was English, was banned for me. He was a simple person and to inculcate similar characteristic in me, he had even fixed the price limit for me to purchase dresses, shoes and personal belongings. He had much focus on my character building and discipline and, didn't allow me to visit cinemas. I wasn't also allowed to stay out of home during dark hours.

He was polite in his handling and there was hardly a moment when I saw him angry or annoyed. To express his displeasure on my any action, he mostly used mild expressions and normally uttered these two words: Ahmaqq (foolish) and Bay-waqoof (moron). I was little naughty in my childhood and often moved out barefooted in the courtyard. He always forbade me from doing so. However, my mother was strict and at times subjected me to beating but never let my father to do that! (There was a definite glimpse of smile, fondness and respect in Dr Javed Iqbal eyes while recollecting these particular golden moments).

Dr Allama Iqbal was fond of music. He occasionally asked me to sing his poems to him. A person from 'Hijaz' (a Khush Ilhaan Hijazi), used to frequently visit him. Allama Iqbal would ask him to recite Holy Qur'aan and while he recited, Allama Iqbal used to weep. I was often asked to be present during this by Allama as he advised me to recite Qur'aan like him. He advocated simplicity and felt happy to know that I had slept on floor instead of bed on any day.

On the fateful night before he died at 5 a.m. on 21 April 1938, I went to him at about 10 p.m. His friend, Chaudhry Muhammad Hussain was sitting beside him. His eyesight had been affected by then due to cataract and was unable to even recognize me. As I entered the room, he asked “kaun hey” (Who is there?). I replied “mein Javed hoon” (I am Javed). He laughed and said “Javed baan kar dikhao” (be like Javed), because literal meanings of Javed are 'eternity'. He then asked Chaudhry Hussain to facilitate me to read his book 'Javed Nama' which is addressed to the younger generation of Muslims. This was probably his last advice to me before his sad demise.

Question: Quaid-i-Azam must be a frequent visitor to Allama Iqbal. Do you have any memories of him?

Answer: Meeting Mr. Jinnah was always an honour for me. During 1936, Quaid-i-Azam was due to visit our home. On that day, Allama asked me to be ready by 4 p.m. and also told me to bring an autograph book. He probably wanted to honour the Quaid and give him an impression of being a well known figure among all age groups. After meeting Quaid-i-Azam, I requested him for autograph that he granted. Then he asked me in English, “Do you also write poetry?” My reply was negative and he asked another question, “What are you going to do when you grow up?” I stayed quiet and while laughing he looked at my father and said, “He doesn't answer.” Allama Iqbal replied to him, “He won't answer. He is waiting for you to tell him what he is to do.” Personality of Jinnah left a great impact on me and I always took him as a role model.

Question: Please explain us the views of Allama Iqbal about the nature and type of a separate nation state for the Muslims of the Subcontinent?

Answer: In my opinion, thoughts of a separate state were floated much earlier than Iqbal's address at Allahabad. Sir Syed Ahmed Khan was the first Muslim leader who raised awareness about population divides between Hindus and Muslims. He gave his point of view through these distinct arguments;

• If democratic order is placed in order by British in the Subcontinent, Muslims shall be the one at loss being in minority.

• The situation between both communities can improve, if some formula of power sharing based on equality is evolved and implemented. But he was fearful of its non implementation owing to lack of population balance between the both.

brig javaid 1Iqbal claimed that he understood Sir Syed Ahmed Khan's concept completely. Iqbal went further ahead by suggesting that the areas of Muslim majority be amalgamated as a separate state. Allama suggested and advocated to initiate the movement to separate Sindh from Bombay Presidency and to introduce reforms in Balochistan and NWFP (now KPK).

When the 'Urdu-Hindi' controversy surfaced in Uttar Pradesh (UP) in 1867, where Hindus of Banaras presented a request to their government regarding the replacement of Urdu with Hindi. Sir Syed Ahmed Khan told the then Commissioner, Mr Shakespeare, that these two communities might never survive together because of their differences and owing to the negative attitude of the Hindus.

The attitude of Hindus towards the Muslims was one of the reasons that resulted in demand for a separate homeland, Pakistan. Muslim leadership was always friendly and initially talked of autonomy that later converted into demand of a separate Muslim state. Jinnah's Fourteen Points after the First Round Table Conference were rejected by Moti Lal Nehru (father of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru). He didn't agree despite efforts by the British as well. Similarly same demands for autonomy were put forth in the Cabinet Mission Plan in 1946 which were accepted by Jinnah but rejected by Nehru. Even Nehru's attitude has of late been criticized by Jaswant Singh in his book, 'Jinnah: India-Partition-Independence' who has held him responsible for a partition that was against the interests of Hindus.

In nutshell, attitude of Hindus was the main reason that compelled our leaders to seriously think for a separate homeland. Quaid's presentation of 'Fourteen Points' and acceptance of the Cabinet Mission Plan bears testimony to the positivity of the then Muslim leadership but Hindus were not ready to accommodate Muslims in any way.

I am often asked a question that what did Muslims achieve through a separate homeland. And I always reply that even at a time when the Subcontinent was one, Hindus were not ready to tolerate and accommodate the demands of the Muslims in any way. Their attitude was likely to even become worst after departure of British.

Question: Do individual and collective interests interpreted in the domain of a modern nation state contradict or conflict with a higher ideology and philosophy that goes beyond these confines? Or in other words, how realpolitik responds to a sublime idealism?

Answer: Iqbal derived his concept of an Islamic democratic state from Meesaq-e-Madina. He wanted Pakistan to be model state for rest of the Muslim world. He neither wanted a secular democracy nor did he think of a theocracy.

Iqbal always thought of a 'Spiritual Democracy'. By spiritual democracy he meant a state which can accommodate and protect people from all religions and sects. As a member of Punjab Legislative Council, Allama Iqbal proposed formulation of a law which was meant to punish people committing “Toheen-e-Baniyan-e-Adiyaan”, means a law to punish anyone who commit blasphemous acts against any religion.

This concept was derived by Iqbal from Meesaq-e-Madina. It was that document in which the Prophet (PBUH) allowed religious freedom to everyone residing in Madina. Iqbal understands it as a Spiritual Democracy and wanted it to be basis of the separate Muslim state. I recently delivered a lecture in Oman on a related theme, 'What is an ideal Islamic democratic state'. I focused my opinions and ideas through the thoughts of Iqbal. Few leaders didn't agree to my point of view but some of them have invited me to discuss this theme further with their scholars. The much debated speech of Quaid-i-Azam delivered on 11 August 1947, which people interpret as his message and desire to establish a secular state, is basically based on Meesaq-e-Madina. Lord Mountbatten, the Last Viceroy of India, once asked Quaid-i-Azam about his idea to govern Pakistan based on the principles of Mughal Emperor Akbar. Jinnah replied him, “No, we have learnt and derived our democratic values from Holy Prophet (PBUH).” He was basically hinting at Meesaq-e-Madina.

Question: Please enlighten us about the concept of 'khudi'? Does it see a Man rising above any material concern and economic interdependence and existing as a self-survivor? How it responds to a present day society immersed in over consumption and gross production net?

Answer: The concept of Khudi is a metaphysical concept. Iqbal placed worth of a human being much above the status that we think ourselves to be at. Iqbal thought that Allah has breathed his soul in humans. The Man through rising from self can reach a sublime position that he becomes a part of eternal reality. The man is submerged in the reality in a way that he is not separated from the Divine Will. Citing example of Masjid-e-Qartaba in the same context, Iqbal believed that it wasn't humanly possible to construct such a masterpiece and thought of some Divine force assisting them. I always believe the same way. Similarly in the case of Hazrat Dawood who sang so well that even birds used to assemble to listen to him which is reflection of Divine manifestation.

Similarly Iqbal emphasized humans to be creative through his book Javed Nama where, in a poem, he delivers a message from Allah to the humans, that anyone who is not creative is a sinner for not having exercised the powers granted by Him. Iqbal emphasized on ‘change, change and change’ concept that brings an end to the jamood (status quo) and results in progress.

Question: Do human 'found truth', philosophy and ideals are limited to a particular time and space? How we see them relevant to changing realities and perceptions?

Answer: Philosophy is kind of an exercise which is related to the reason and consciousness. It is related to ideals and not directly to the everyday life. The thoughts and practical thinking of people like Iqbal does have linkage with some philosophical base. Basically philosophy is a loose term that includes metaphysics as well as ethics or, anything else. Philosophy isn't related to a particular time and space. People who make statues of their thinkers and heroes should actually try to study them and follow them. The process of change should be a regular feature.

Question: Does Allama's advocacy of Ijtihad meant rejection of tradition and to what extent?

Answer: Ijtihad doesn't mean to prevent changes in all matters. No. It means that the issues meriting change must undergo the requisite transformation. It is related to the Mu’amalat (routine affairs of a human life) but not with the Ibadat (religious obligations). The change is important to tackle the emerging realities of time and space. Human journey cannot remain tied to the antiquity for all the times. According to Allama the creativity and change for a better construction is the essence. It is through creativity that Man fulfils Divine manifestation. It is not through blindly following the tradition but through a constructive change commensurate with time and space that Man takes forward the journey according to God's Will. If we look around, there are many Muslim societies that have introduced many changes according to the needs of present times. We have examples of Tunisia, Indonesia etc. For example, Indonesia has brought so many changes in their day-to-day affairs in accordance with changing environments. Hillary Clinton, former US Secretary of State, has on record stated that women enjoy exemplary privileges and status in Indonesia which should be followed by other countries as well. It is through Ijtihad that a Muslim country, Indonesia, has introduced changes in rules other than basic religious obligations.

Question: How can we overcome challenges of intolerance and extremism?

Answer: Extremism has affected our society from every angle. Islam doesn't permit its people to kill others for whatever reasons. Writ of the State must be established and negotiations with these extremists must be made from the position of strength. All segments of the society have to play their role in transforming our society as tolerant and accommodative. We can never progress with the label of an extremist and intolerant society.

Question: How can we achieve national integration?

Answer: There are many ways to achieve it. The language can play a very vital role in this. The Quaid-i-Azam, who himself couldn't speak Urdu properly, declared it as a national language. Iqbal always talked of unity. We need to promote Iqbalian thinking in ourselves. Unfortunately our universities do not have 'Iqbal Chairs' that can help people to understand his vision. Likewise Madrassas should also be affiliated with universities so that concept of unified syllabus can be promoted and unity can be achieved.

30
December

A Dialogue with Syed Anwar Mahmood on 1971 Debacle

Written By: Asif Jehangir Raja

Question: You spent most of your time in Bangladesh before and during 1971. How do you explain the environment of erstwhile East Pakistan in 1971?

Answer: Yes! I spent most part of my early life in East Pakistan and was brought up in that part of the country. I obtained my early education from Cadet College Faujdarhat, located near Chittagong (the institution was built in 1958 under President Ayub Khan). I was an employee of United Bank Limited (UBL) in East Pakistan before taking up my exams of Central Superior Services (CSS). I am a witness to whatever happened in East Pakistan in 1971. I was there till 15th November 1971 before boarding my flight to Karachi to take up my training in the Civil Services Academy. The people of East Pakistan were politically very aware. They were aware of their rights, could never easily be subjugated and were basically pro-Bengali and not pro-Indians. In short, they were for themselves.

The populace of pre-1971 East Pakistan can be categorized in three segments as: 1) A small minority of Hindus who opted to stay in East Pakistan after the partition. They were mostly pro-Indians and were also supported again by a very smaller minority within Muslims. 2) Pro-Pakistan people, and 3) A population that was pro-Bengali but not anti Pakistan. I am not ready to accept the fact that people of East Pakistan were pro-Indians. No! They were never. As I said earlier, they were up for their own cause. However, there is no denying to the fact that India benefitted from the situation and exploited it to her advantage. The environment during 1971 was very tense. Government was almost non-existent after 1st March 1971 and political workers of Awami League had taken over the control of East Pakistan beyond military cantonments whereas the strength of Pakistan Army, at that time, was little too less to handle the situation. People were no longer safe due to the law and order situation which had been created by Mukti Bahini and the Awami League activists.

Question: You were residing with family in East Pakistan in 1971. How do you recall those days?

Answer: It was a very tragic and traumatic time. Situation started getting tense from 1st March 1971 onward. My mother and siblings were in Chittagong whereas my father was in another town and I was in Dhaka. Two days later, on 3rd March, me and one of my cousins travelled to Chittagong via train to bring our family to Dhaka. The news coming from relatives and friends in different parts of the country were not good. Many known people went missing or were injured or killed in the mayhem.

Luckily our family was safe and while we were making efforts for our safe return to Dhaka, my two Bengali juniors of Cadet College days also joined in helping us. We reached back safely and after few days my family flew to Karachi, whereas I and my father stayed back. Later in November 1971, I moved to Karachi to join the Civil Services whereas my father also reached Karachi on two weeks Eid leave and then didn't get a chance to return. Those three weeks till 26th March were very tense and volatile. In sheer anger, any non Bengali or Punjabi (people of all other four provinces were called as Punjabi in East Pakistan) was attacked by Mukti Bahinis and their associates. In this wave, thousands of non Bengalis were killed. I and a friend made it a point to visit the Tejgaon Railway Station near Dhaka every evening to pick up the injured and displaced people. We used to drive them in our own car to the camps or hospitals. This continued until 26th March. By then more strength of Pakistan Army was flown to help and secure people and a crackdown was ordered on the night of 25/26 March.

I shall quote an incident of 1st March 1971. Pakistan was playing a four day cricket match against a Commonwealth XI at the Dhaka stadium. March 1st was the last day of the match. During the lunch break, we moved out to have food from the shops adjacent to the stadium. There was crowd of people at one of the pan shops listening to the radio. All of a sudden I noticed disturbance around that shop followed by slogans. Upon inquiring, it was revealed that Radio Pakistan, in its midday news bulletin, had just announced about President Yahya Khan's decision to postpone the inaugural session of the newly elected National Assembly which was to meet in Dhaka two days later. Due to the size of its population, East Pakistan had more number of seats in the parliament as against the combined seats of the four provinces in West Pakistan. Awami League, that had won majority of seats in the elections from East Pakistan, was in a position to form government in the centre without support of any other political party.

The postponement of National Assembly session was received by East Pakistanis (Bengalis) as a move to rob them of their right to form an elected government. It was a readymade crowd watching the match that moved across to the nearby Purbani Hotel, led by Tufail Ahmed, the President of Awami League's students' wing called 'Chatro League'. Sheikh Mujib Ur Rahman was in the hotel presiding over a session of Executive Council of his party. Tufail went in the hotel and brought out Sheikh Mujib Ur Rahman. He demanded Mujib to declare independence there and then, to hoist the flag of Bangladesh, and to address the crowd.

However, Sheikh Mujib Ur Rahman refused to do all three on 1st March 1971. He waved to the crowd and asked them to calm down. I believe that by asking the elected leader from East Pakistan to form the government at centre would have saved the situation. If we can now allow the unprecedented autonomy to the provinces under the 18th Amendment, why could not we let the party with the largest number of elected seats to form the government in 1971? Ironically, due to 18th Amendment the state has even transferred the responsibility of health and education to the provinces, the subjects of great importance, which are even kept at central level by a developed and large country like USA. Under this very 18th Amendment we have created a situation, where the provinces today are richer and stronger than the federation.

Question: On one side it is said that economic inequality created a sense of deprivation in East Pakistan that led to discontent and separation and on the other hand it has also been observed that government of Pakistan had undertaken massive developmental work in East Pakistan after 1947. What led to the situation that resulted in 1971 debacle?

Answer: Yes! The development did take place in East Pakistan but pace of the progress was much slower than that of West Pakistan. Bengalis always compared it with the progress that took place in West Pakistan and carried the feelings of deprivation. Bengalis believed that the pace of development in East Pakistan was much slower than in the Western Wing. The Indians skillfully exploited this sentiment and sense of deprivation. The country lacked in leadership after Quaid-i-Azam. The decisions were not taken with foresight and prudence. More so, many politically incorrect decisions were taken which provoked negative sentiments within the masses. First and foremost was in 1954 when the elected government of United Front in East Bengal was dissolved. In addition, why was then 'One Unit' created in 1955?

Then name of the province was changed from East Bengal to East Pakistan without any consultation with the leadership and people of the province. The government should have conducted referendum in East Bengal to know the willingness of the local populace which was never done. Recently the NWFP has been renamed as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with consent of the Provincial Assembly and local people. It prompted Sheikh Mujeeb Ur Rehman to call on the floor of Constituent Assembly that word 'Bengal' was now left only in the 'Bay of Bengal'. In 1969, when the 'One Unit' was undone by the government, it should principally have reverted to the 1955 position which it did not.

Question: In your assessment, what was the role of foreign countries in turning situation against Pakistan in East Pakistan?

Answer: There was full scale involvement of India in East Pakistan. Indians exploited the already politically volatile situation to their benefit and facilitated the disintegration of Pakistan. Mukti Bahinis were trained by India. The Indians did not only train but also physically supported the sabotage and subversion activities inside the country. Indians left no stone unturned to damage Pakistan by exploiting our follies. I think Indians have not yet been able to forget and reconcile with the partition and their hatred towards us appears now and then in different shapes. When your own house is in disorder, enemy will surely take the advantage. The Indian political leadership, its army and its media joined hands to do exactly that and succeeded in dismembering Pakistan.

On 7th September 1965, a day after war broke out, there were huge anti India protests on the roads of Dhaka by students of almost all institutions. Thousands of people participated in these protests and I was also one of them, marching on the roads. This anti Indian sentiment was even multiplied when news of Indian bombardment at a town in East Pakistan spread among people. During that war, the people of Bengal stood fully behind the government of Pakistan.

However, I must say that even years after separating from Pakistan the sentiments against India have not subsided in what is now Bangladesh. Here I will quote few incidents.

I visited Bangladesh in 1985 for the first time after 1971 to witness final match of Asian Cup Hockey Tournament between Pakistan and India. Before start of the match, I went to a shopping mall with the name of Bait ul Mukarram with a friend. I asked the shopkeeper as to who would emerge as victorious from the match and he instantly replied in Bengali, “Amara jeet Bhoo – ”, meaning “we will win”. I was surprised and asked him that Bangladesh wasn’t playing, then whom was he referring to? He said, “Pakistan jeet Bhoo – ”, meaning “Pakistan will win”. So even after 14 years of disintegration, anti India feelings were prevalent. I also want to quote another incident of 1993, when I visited Bangladesh in connection with re-union of my Cadet College. I was taken on a drive-out by an old Bengali friend (a retired Major from Pakistan and later, Bangladesh Army) who used to be my room-mate at Dhaka University, and was later elected as the member of Bangladesh Parliament and had also served as a Minister. While we were driving in the suburbs of Dhaka in the month of January, we came across few units of Bangladesh Army busy in their field training. I cracked a joke with him that all Army exercises and training are carried out with a perception of an enemy, and then whom were they training against. And his instant reply was, “Don’t you know? Of course, it is India”.

Question: It is believed that the complete local population of the East Pakistan did not want to be separated and it was triggered by few. What are your comments at this?

Answer: Yes! It is true. As I said earlier, not all of the people wanted separation. But out of fear of Mukti Bahni, other militants and the prevalent political environment, they remained quiet. But now, as I interact with my friends from Bangladesh, they express great nostalgia for those days once the two Wings were one country and also quietly refer to the unfair deal that they are now being subjected to by their mighty neighbour and especially mention construction of huge dams by India that have dried up Bangladeshi rivers.

Question: Was Government of Pakistan allowed to function by Mukti Bahini after 1st March 1971? What was the situation on ground?

Answer: No. Government of Pakistan wasn't allowed to function after 1st March. Government officials were forced to take orders from Sheikh Mujeeb or party leaders of Awami League. It was a mutiny against the State. Even within Army, Bengali soldiers were provoked by Mukti Bahini to take up arms against Punjabis (West Pakistanis). Army was confined to the cantonments due to their less strength. After arrival of more troops, Army started operations from 25/26th March onward and subsequently, managed to restore peace in major cities and towns. However, it was extremely difficult for the Army to completely check the cross-border movement. The Army troops were less in number whereas they were required to guard a very long porous border with India. The porous border was extremely conducive to a guerrilla like warfare that was fully backed by India. The difficult terrain, forests, rivers, lakes and climate all compounded the difficulties for Pakistan Army. It became extremely difficult to sustain the logistic support. Along with other difficulties, the logistics difficulties compounded by two factors: internally, due to sabotage activities it became extremely difficult to maintain a far stretched army, and, externally Indians denied a direct access between two parts of the country separated by 1000 miles. The PIA had to operate its flights to Dhaka via Sri Lanka. For any army to fight a successful war, the whole hearted support of the local population is very vital. Unfortunately, the fast paced events and the shortsightedness of our leadership was in no way helpful for Pakistan Army which was suddenly faced with hostile local population.

Question: In your opinion why we could not counter Indian propaganda effectively?

Answer: Indians had been working on various fronts for very long to promote their anti Pakistan agenda. Our own mistakes on ground helped Indians achieving their designs against us. The world appeared willing to believe stories of atrocities spun by Indian media. When military operation started against the people who had taken law in their hands, foreign journalists were asked to leave East Pakistan. As a result, they all packed up and camped in Calcutta. They did not have direct access to the information and were dependent on feed back by India which also facilitated in promotion of Indian perspective of this issue at international level and turned international sentiments against us.

Question: In your views, how we should have tackled Indian intrusion and subsequent aggression, and how could we have resolved domestic issues to avoid such a tragedy?

Answer: The best way was to hand over government to Awami League after their land slide victory in elections. There was no harm in having a Prime Minister from East Pakistan if the party had won majority. The interest of Pakistan would have been served better had East Pakistan been allocated more than its share to bridge the gap that existed in the income level of the two Wings. This would have served to create the goodwill among East Pakistanis for the people from West Pakistan. We must remember that domestic unrest paves the way for foreign intrusion. India was clever enough to exploit the situation. Muslims ruled the Subcontinent as a minority for almost eight centuries. Hindus always carry this grudge and it may take centuries to change their mindset.

Even now India is involved in unrest in Balochistan and other areas. But Indian propaganda and media is so strong that negative Indian role is never exposed. Everyone one in the media talks about Mumbai incident and maligns Pakistan, but we have heard very little of the Samjhota Express incident and the terrorism unleashed by Hindu extremists. Indian extremist attitude will grow further in the days to come as is evident from the rise of certain political elements and their brazen hostility towards Muslims living in India and Pakistan. We must have peace with India, but with dignity, honour and on the basis of sovereign equality.

We must remember that our forefathers left their homes, businesses and properties and came to Pakistan for the sake of respect and dignity that was difficult to maintain in a Hindu majority state. Their vision and sacrifices must not be forgotten so easily and so quickly. I fail to understand that why are we shy of exposing the accesses committed by India to the world community? The quest for peace is not a one way street. Both the countries should meet each other halfway.

Question: What lessons we should apply to bring peace in many troubled areas in Pakistan under present circumstances? Any suggestions for national integration and progress of the country.

Answer: To me, the most important factor to achieve national integration and progress is by following true democratic norms in the country. This can only be ensured through formation of democratic and empowered local governments at district and union council levels. Democratic culture will never take roots unless we raise the structure from bottom-up. This system should be made a permanent feature through constitutional amendments. The benefits of provincial autonomy must travel down to the people at the lowest administrative level of the province. We must carryout review of our governance system of last 65 years. The flaws that kept us away from progress must be reviewed in the best interest of the country.

Moreover, I support creation of more provinces on administrative grounds, not on ethnic basis. It shall bring more prosperity in all parts of Pakistan.

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