#WorldPoetryDay: Meet India’s Protest Poets Who Fight With Words

#WorldPoetryDay: Meet India’s Protest Poets Who Fight With Words

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Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas

‘Bol... ke labh azaad hai tere.’

Faiz’s ‘Hum Dekhenge’ may have been deemed ‘unsuitable’ to our times but his spirit, of fighting with words, echoes across generations.

On World Poetry Day, here’s a tribute to all the young poets in India who are protesting with their pens.

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'Sab Yaad Rakha Jayega’: Amir Aziz’s Powerful Poem on Police Brutality in Jamia, AMU

Tum raat likho hum chaand likhenge
Tum jail mein daalo hum deewar phaand likhenge

Tum FIR likho hum hain taiyyar likhenge
Tum hamein qatl kar do hum banke bhoot likhenge
Tumhare qatl ke saare saboot likhenge

Tum adaalaton se baithkar chutkule likho
Hum sadkon deewaron pe insaaf likhenge

Behre bhi sun mein itni zor se bolenge
Andhe bhi padh lein itna saaf likhenge

Tum kaala kamal likho
Hum laal gulaab likhenge

Tum zameen pe zulm likh do
Aasmaan pe inquilab likha jayega

Sab yaad rakha jayega
Sab kuch yaad rakha jayega

Tumhari laathiyon aur goliyon se qatl hue hain jo mere yaar sab
Unki yaad mein dilon ko barbaad rakha jayega
Sab yaad rakha jayega

Tum syahiyon se jhooth likhoge humein maloom hai
Ho humare khoon se hi ho sahi sach zaroor likha jayega
Sab yaad rakha jayega

Mobile telephone internet bhari dopeher mein band karke
Sard andheri raat mein pure sheher ko nazarband karke
Hathaudiyan lekar daffatan mere ghar mein ghus aanaa
Mera sar badan meri mukhtasar si zindagi ko tod jaana

Mere lakht-e-jigar ko beech chaurahe pe maar kar
Yun be andaaz khade hokar jhund mein tumhara muskurana

Sab yaad rakha jayega
Sab kuchh yaad rakha jayega

Din mein meethi meethi baatein karna saamne se
Sab kuch theek hai har zabaan mein tutlaana
Raat hote hi haq maang rahe logon pe lathiyan chalana goliyan chalana
Humhi pe hamla karke humhi ko hamlawar batana
Sab yaad rakha jayega

Main apni haddiyon pe likhke rakhunga ye saare wardaat
Tum jo maangte ho mujhse mere hone ke kaagzaat
Apni hasti ka tumko saboot zarur diya jayega
Ye jung tumhari aakhri saans tak lada jayega
Sab yaad rakha jayega

Ye bhi yaad rakha jayega ke kis tarah se tumne watan ko todne ki saajishein ki
Ye bhi yaad rakha jayega ke kis jatan se humne watan ko jodne ki khwahishein ki

Jab kabhi bhi zikr aayega jahan mein daur-e-buzdili ka tumhara kaam yaad rakha jayega
Jab kabhi bhi zikr aayega jahan mein taur-e-zindagi ka humara naam yaad rakha jayega

Ke kuch log the jinke iraade toote nahi the lohe ki hathaudiyon se
Ke kuch log the jinke zameer bike nahi tha izaardaaron ki kaudiyon se
Ke kuchh log the jo tike rahe the tufaan-e-noo ke guzar jaane ke baad tak
Ke kuchh log the jo zinda rahe the apne maut ki khabar aane ke baad tak

Bhale bhool jaye palak aankhon ko moondna
Bhale bhool zameen apni dhoori pe ghumna
Hamare kate paron ki parvaaz ko hamare phate gaalon ki awaaz ko yaad rakha jayega

Tum raat likho hum chaand likhenge
Tum jail mein daalo hum deewar phaand likhenge

Tum FIR likho hum hain taiyyar likhenge
Tum hamein qatl kar do hum banke bhoot likhenge
Tumhare qatl ke saare saboot likhenge

Tum adaalaton se baithkar chutkule likho
Hum sadkon deewaron pe insaaf likhenge

Behre bhi sun mein itni Zor se bolenge
Andhe bhi padh lein itna saaf likhenge

Tum kaala Kamal likho
Hum laal gulaab likhenge

Tum zameen pe zulm likh do
Aasmaan pe inquilab likha jayega

Sab yaad rakha jayega
Sab kuchh yaad rakha jayega

Taakey tumhare naam par ta-umr laanatein bhejin jaa sakein
Taakey tumhare mujassamon par kalikhein potee jaa sakein

Tumhare naam tumhare mujassamon ko abaad rakha jayega.

‘Naam Shaheen Bagh Hai’: Darab Farooqui’s Ode to the Women Protesters

Kabhi SadkoN Ko Sar Uthate Dekha hai
Kabhi ZakhmoN Ko Muskurate Dekha Hai
Kabhi Dekhi Hai Tumne DuppataoN MaiN Lipti Azaadi
Kahin Dekhi Hai Assi Saal Ki Inqulaabi Shehzadi
Woh Markaz Jo Aaj Ehtejaaj Ka Chiragh Hai
Usi Chamakti Lau Ka Naam Shaheen Bagh Hai
Tujhe Zidd Dekhni Hai Toh Aaj Zidd Dekh
Jama’ Nahi Haq Ki Yeh Masjid Dekh
Aake DilaoN Ki Garmi Mai Yehan Haat Taap Le

Pahadaon Se Oonche Hauslon Ka YahaaN Qad Naap Le
Jahan Kisi Daman Pe Nahi Koi Daagh Hai
Us Ujle Pallu Ka Naam Shaheen Bagh Hai
Lakshmi-Bai Dekh, Razia Sultan Dekh
Hijab Se Ubharta Naya Hindustan Dekh
Andheera Cheerti Taqreraon Ki Awaaz Sun
Badalta Uthta Aurataon Ka Samaaj Sun
In Aurataon Ne Ab Diya Apna Ghar Tyaag Hai
Aur Inke Naye Ghar Ka Naam Shaheen Bagh Hai

‘Ab ki Holi Pooch Rahi’: Abhinav Nagar Mourns Loss of 52 Lives in Northeast Delhi Violence

Aapa ki surkh birayani mein
Woh saffron saaf saaf dikhta tha...
Hara bhara kebab Sharma ka
Aksar, anwar ke tave pe pakta tha...

Mazhab mein jab baanta naa tha
har Rang mein desh rangaa tha...
Holi abki pooch rahi...
Tera shehar kyun itna berangaa tha?

Mohalley ke bacchon ne woh deewar jo milkar rangi thi...
Kisi ne phoolon mein rang bhara tha, uspar daali kisi ki tangi thi..
Bharkar ek din rang apna, koi nafrat ki pichkaari maar gaya...
Rang puraane bikher ke koi, naksha apna utaar gaya...

Poochein bacchce yeh rang kaunsa?
Hamari toh pehchaan Tiraanga tha...
Holi abki pooch rahi...
Tera shehar kyun itna berangaa tha?

Garm Garm gujiyaaon se jab
mohabbat ka ras tapakta tha...
Pista Afghani ya kismis desi?
kahan kisko fark padta tha...

Nahakar phir gali mein sabka
jab Holi milan hota tha...
Kala rang jo chhuta nahin...
bas wohi ek villain hota tha...

Abki kisi ne siyasi gubbaron ke nishaane lagaaye hain..
Tan bhigoye nahi paane ne, jaltey ghar bujhaaye hain...
Jiss sadak pe sab naachte gaate
uspe maut ka naach kyun nanga tha?

Holi abki pooch rahi..
Tera shehar kyun itna berangaa tha?

Haan rivaaz hai, Holi par, aur mohallon ke log aate hain...
Rangon mein jo chehra potkar, chupke se rang jaate hain
Par abki Holi se pehle, kuch rangon ke karobari aaye...
Lal nahi jinhe lahoo pasand tha, rishtey phonkey, ghar jalaaye..

Jab tak rang utra mazhab hai...
samjhe, koi rang nahi woh danga tha...

Holi abki pooch rahi...
Tera shehar kyun itna berangaa tha?

‘Vaastavik Kanoon’: Naveen Chourey Has Some Questions For Those Lynching Muslims in the Garb of a Mob

Ik sadak pe khoon hai
Taareekh koi June hai
Ek ungli hai padee
Aur uspe jo naakhoon hai
Naakhoon pe hai ik nishaan
Ab kaun hoga hukmaraan
Jab chun rahi thi ungliyaan
Ye ungli bhi tab thi vahaan
Phir kyon padi hai khoon mein?
Jism iska hai kahaan?
Mar gaya ke tha hi na?

Kaun the voh log jinke haath mein thi laathiyaan?
Koi afsar tha police ka?
Nyaaya adheesh aaye the kya?
Kaun karta tha vaqaalat?
Faisala kisne diya?

Ya koi dharmatma tha?
Dharm ke rakshak the kya?
Dharm ka updesh kya tha ?
Kaun the vo devata ?

Na police na patrakar
Nagarik hoon zimmedaar
Seedhe-seedhe prashn hain
Seedha uttar do mujhe
Hai sadak khoon kyon?
Voh log aakhir kaun the?

Aadmi chhote hain saahib, hum ka padte beech mein
Hum bachaane bhi gaye the, teen pad gaye kheench ke
Motorcycle laaye the, rod pe kar di khadi
Aath-das launde-lapaade, laathiyaan ittee badi
Gaali de ke poochha, pet mein ghoonsa diya
Adhmara voh gir pada phir de danaadan laathiyaan
Paanv ki haddee mita di, maans ki lugadi bana di
Khoon toh itta baha ke humse na dekha gaya

Ek unmein hosh mein tha, jaane usako kya padi
Jeb se chaaku nikala, ungli uski kaat li
Aakhri tha vaar jiska, unka voh sardaar tha
Usne hi sabko bataya, jo mara gaddaar tha
"Haq nahin inko hamaare desh ke ik vote par
Deemakon ko na rakho gar jootiyon ki nonk par
Sar pe ye chadh jaayenge, ye kaee guna badh jaayenge
Hukmaraan hoga inhee ka, aag mootenge sabhi
Pair ke neeche kuchal do, jeet hogi dharm ki"

Hum to khud dar gaye the saahib, khauf unko tha nahi
Kis nasal ke log the voh kuchh samajh aaya nahin
Na koi insaan unmein, na koi tha aadmi
Saath mil ke sher ban gaye geedadon ki bheed thi
Nonch khaane ki talab thi, jaanvar taaseer thi
Haath mein thi laathiyaan to bhains bhi unki hi thi

Aur yeh koi jumla nahi hai, vaastavik kaanoon hai
Humse kahe poochhte ho, kyon sadak pe khoon hai?
Poochho is ungli se tum, kya yahan ghatna ghati?
Jurm isne kya kiya tha, jism se ye kyon kati?
Main to samjha mar chuki hai
Ungli mein par jaan thi
Syaahee us naakhoon pe, jo desh ka sammaan thi

Bole, ab kya chaahiye, vote tha de to diya
Jee rahe the qaid mein, maut de di, shukriya
Naakhoon pe jamhooriyat hai, jam gaya hai khoon bhi
Aap hi toh ho adalat, aap ho kaanoon bhi
Aap se kaisi shikaayat, aap to hain neend mein
Aap jaise sau khade the, jaahilon ki bheed mein
Sau mein se gar ek bhi de de gavaahi aapko
Main khushi se maan loonga bheed ke insaaf ko
Kijiye is par bahas ab panel-on mein baithkar
Kya hua Mohan ka vaada? Hain kahaan Ambedkar?
Sab barabar hain agar to bas mujhe hi kyon chuna?
Tum batao kaun dega ghar ko mere rotiyaan?

Asliyat se bekhabar ho, shaharee ho, Dilli se ho
Ik hidaayat de raha hoon, soch ke bola karo
Tum savaalon se bhare ho, kya tumhein maaloom hai?
Bheed se kuchh poochhna bhi jaanleva jurm hai
Tafteesh karane aaye ho, khul ke kar lo shauq se
Fark padta hi kahaan hai? Ek-do ki maut se
Chaar din charcha uthegi, “democracy laayenge”
Paanchven din bhool ke sab kaam pe lag jaayenge

Kaam se hee kaam rakhna
Haan, magar yeh yaad rakhana
Koi poochhe kaun the
Bas tumhein itna hai kahana
Bheed thi kuchh log the

Phir bhi gar koi zid pakad le
Kya hua kisne kiya?
Soch ke ungli uthaana
Kat rahi hain ungaliyaan
Baat ko kuch yoon ghumaana
Nafraton ka rog the
Dharm na koi zaat unki
Bheed thi kuch log the.

‘One Day’: Rohith Vemula Dreamed of Resurrecting From Caste Oppression

One day you will understand why I was aggressive.
On that day, you will understand
why I have not just served social interests.
One day you will get to know why I apologised.
On that day, you will understand
there are traps beyond the fences.
One day you will find me in the history.
In the bad light, in the yellow pages.
And you will wish I was wise.
But at the night of that day,
you will remember me, feel me
and you will breathe out a smile.
And on that day, I will resurrect.

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