By: Dr. Ahmed H. Makhdoom
He gave his life so that our Sindhrree can live and breathe. On 9th August, every year, the valleys and fields, hills and mountains, cities and towns, hovels and villages, rivers and lakes and every leaf of every tree and each pebble of the sacred Land of Sindh screams for one of the valiant, verdant, veritable and venerable son of Sindh, Nazir Abbasi, who was so brutally snatched away from the warm embrace of our sanctimonious Mother, Sindh, by the savages and barbarians!
آھِين شانَ شَعۇرَ سِين؍ جانِبَ تۇن جيڏو؍
مۈنتي ڪَرِ مُنھِنجا پِرِين؍ تَھِ تَسي تيڏو؍
اِيھو ڪامِلُ ڪَمُ ڪيڏو؍ جي نَوازِين نِگاھَ سِين؍
“Aaheen shaana shauura seen, jaaniba tuun jeiddo,
Muun tei kari, munhjaa pireen! Tahi tasei teiddo,
Eeyo kaamilu kamu keiddo, jei nawazeemi nigaaha seen.”
(Bhittai: Sur Barwo: 2/1)
“With Glory and Grace, O Loved One! Thee Supremely Lofty!
For Thine Blessings, O Beloved! Likewise, do make me thirsty!
Perfect is Thy Magnificence, sanctify me with Thy Magnanimity!
(Bhittai: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
It was sometime in early 1970s that there was a “Clash of Principles,” between my dearly beloved father and myself. That ‘clash’ resulted in myself moving out of the house of my father in Karachi and take up a rental little house in Latifabad, Hyderabad. Here in the peaceful surroundings of this wonderful Housing Society, myself , my mother, two younger sisters and a younger brother made our abode for a couple of years.
My mother was old, frail and her health was not better condition and my kid sister, Masna, was there to take care of her. My other younger sister Suraiya and brother Zahid were studying in Sindh University and as an eldest in the family, I had this privilege, duty, responsibility and honour to take care of them.
By 1970, I had already become a ‘veteran’ fighter for the rights of Sindh, Sindhis, Sindhi students and progressive Forces, who ignited the fire of Sindhyata and Sindhiness in the 1960s. Be it the Army Dictatorship of Ayub Khan, or Sindhi Language, or discriminatory policies and practices against Sindhi students, or One Unit, we were out on streets, agitating and protesting non-violently, peacefully against all forms of bias, discriminations, perjuries, torture, torment and tyranny suffered by the sweet, innocent, simple children of beautiful Mother Sindh! We were all the time, rounded up by the savage Authorities and thrust into inhuman prisons along with the criminals, rapists and murders. We were under constant scrutiny and gaze of the wily, wretched Army and Police.
By 1970, many of those valiant sons and daughters of Sindh, my dear colleagues, my dear friends, my fellow travellers on the Path of Freedom, my buddies soldiering for Sindh Rights, after achieving their objectives, more or less – breaking up ONE UNIT, getting Sindhi language recognised as a National Language, getting rid of the dictator Ayub Khan and supporting to success Z.A. Bhutto and his new fledgling Political Party – were married with few children and having to support large combined families of siblings and relatives. We were busy eking out a living supporting our children, siblings and many family members and relatives.
I was a young Merchant Navy Officer at that time and had to leave home for few months to make a living on board foreign-going cargo vessels. During my absence, Suraiya and Zahid took care of the family and some of my dear friends kept our house replenished with groceries and all other needs, requirements to keep the family alive and comfortable.
During my visits home, after months of sailing, I used to meet not just my own friends but also those of my younger siblings, Suraiya and Zahid, who were both actively involved in student politics, nationalist, socialist and other issues affecting Sindh and Sindh people. Regularly, friends of my activist siblings, came visiting me at our home for ‘aashirwaad,’ as an elder and guidance and advice, if any.
Being veterans of countless struggles for Sindh, Democracy, Language, Socialism, Sindhyata, we were always sought by the young Freedom Fighters, who had taken our place to continue the struggle for the enlightenment and emancipation of our motherland, our fatherland! We continued meeting these valiant new soldiers of Sindhiness, sharing our experiences with them, advising them, guiding them and just encouraging them to move on, march on, never to look back and to STAND UP and BE COUNTED!
One sweaty hot morning of scorching Summer of Sindh, Zahid, my younger brother, brought with him a young man, handsome-looking and with an aura of wisdom and greatness surrounding his personality. I was mesmerised by his effervescent and humble demeanour and extremely enamoured by his extraordinary knowledge of the principles and precepts of Socialism, Communism and Sindhi Nationalism and firmly well-informed and well-read about the icons and leaders of each of these ‘isms,’ – like Lenin, Mao, Castro, Che Guevara, Hyder Bux Jatoi, Ustad Bukhari, G.M. Syed and others.
Since then, we met few times, had memorable kutchehries, discussions and shared our views and ideas. Sometimes, we were also joined by Jam Saqi and few other veritable and venerable icons of universal peace, co-existence, Sindhyata and Sindhiness.
This young man was Nazir Abbasi, whom, at a first glance, I found him to be so very much in love with Sindh, Putthheeya Ughaarraa (shirtless) Sindhi peasants, farmers, kurrmees, and so passionately involve with the fight for the rights of workers, fishermen, labourers and students. He was absolutely in control with what he was professing, planning, and practicing!
Nazir Abbasi continued pushing forward and pursuing relentlessly, ardently and intrepidly for the rights of Sindh and Sindhi downtrodden and suffering masses. He devoted his entire life, sacrificing family and friends, for his noble CAUSE and he enjoyed every moment of his serious involvement in his mission, until the last day of his celebrated life!
“Ujhanna khan machanna meinmazo tho achei,
Jajharru thee jiyanna mein mazo tho achei;
Aseen irtiqaa jaa sachaa ashiqa aahyuun,
Waranna khan wadhaanna mein mazo tho achei!”
“Delight there be, in flickering rather than stifling,
Thrill there be, in living like embers sparkling;
Lovers we be, of evolution and existence kindling,
Excitement there be, in blossoming rather than shriveling.”
(Ustad Bukhari: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
In Nazir Abbasi, I saw an epitome of a courageous man, an embodiment of a bold, brave, brilliant and bright Sindhi student leader! He was so brutally, savagely killed by Zia-ul Haq’s barbaric Army, Police and the Secret Services. He was mercilessly, cruelly, ruthlessly and inhumanely tortured by the pathological criminal (Brig) Imtiaz and his equally barbaric Secret Service.
These psychopath vermin, xenophobic criminals continue to torture, torment, terrorise peace-loving, secular-minded, simple, innocent Sindhis and Balochs every day, till this day.
Not just this persevering soul, gem of a person, Nazir Abbasi, was tortured to death on 9th August, 1980, but his entire family – father, mother, brothers, sisters and other near relatives – were savagely tortured and imprisoned in Tando Allahyar prison.
The perpetrators of these heinous crimes, including the greatest scavenger of all, the savage brute Imtiaz, are still around, freely enjoying the ’fruits’ of their barbarism in this miserable, terrorist, corrupt and failed state, known as ‘Pakistan,’ where humanity never breathes, where even God never lives!
This day, 9th August is one of the blackest day and a profoundly sad day for the gregarious land known as Sindh and for the entire exuberant Sindhi nation. The Liberals, Leftists, Socialists, Progressive, Secular and Nationalist forces in, not just Sindh and Balochistan, but throughout this erstwhile “Land of Pure”, are also in mourning and paying their tributes to this valiant fighter for the cause of the downtrodden.
And now, the time has come when we Sindhis will have to follow the noble, worthy and virtuous footsteps, left so glaringly in view, by the martyrs like Saaeen Nazir Abbasi, on every pathway in our motherland,
پتنگ چاھين پاڻ کي؍ تَ اچي آڳ أجھا۶ِ؍
پچڻ گھڻان پچايا؍ تون پچڻ کي پچاِ۶؍
واقف ٿي وسا۶ِ؍ آڳ نَ ڏج عام کي؍
“Patangu chaaheen paanna khei, ta achee aaggi ujhaaei,
Pachanna ghannaan pachaayaa, tuun pachaanna khei pachaai,
Waaqufu thee wisaai, aagga na ddiju aama khei.”
“Be thou butterfly moth, then douse fire of ardour within,
Fire hath burnt so many, thou burneth the blaze within!
Extinguish like an expert, this privilege give not to anyone!
(Shah Bhittai: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
My own personal condemnation and contempt, protest and disapproval, anger and revulsion for the crimes against humanity committed by the savage Armed Forces, its barbaric leaders, brutish Intelligence Services and unworthy, corrupt Politicians and Administrators is a peaceful one, non-violent and civilised. On 9th August, the day my friend, the glittering son of glorious Sindh was savagely murdered.
We also appeal the United Nations Organisations, the World Human Rights organisations, and the entire civilised nations and people of the world to join us in condemning and censuring the animals who had conducted such savage crimes against humanity. We demand that the killers of Nazir Abbasi and other worthy sons and daughters of Sindh and Balochistan, be immediately apprehended and brought before the International Court of Justice and International Criminal Court to be tried for their brutality, rape and murders.
Yes, I can hear Saaeen Nazir Abbasi in the whistling of the early morning breeze in the plains of our dhartee, Mother Sindh:
“مان هجان يا نه هجان، دنيا ۾، تون نه مايوس ڪڏهن ٿجان،
پنهنجي دردن کي لڪائي سانڍي، لوڪ کي لکا ڪا نه ڏجان،”
“Maan hujaan na hujaan dunya mein, tuun na maayuus kaddanhi yhijaan,
Pahnjei dardan khei likaaei saandhei, loka khei lalkhaa kona ddijaan!”
“Mother Sindh! Me, be there or not, never shall thee feel sad dejected lot!
Hiding shrouding thy painful wounds, for thy children’s sake suffer not!
……And, each year on this day grief-stricken Sindh and every mourning child of Sindh remembers Nazir Abbasi him and his immeasurable sacrifices for the Freedom and emancipation of Sindh. He lived for the glory of Motherland and died for, splendour and grandeur of our gregarious land. This is my humble tribute to the brave warrior of Sindh whose blood and the blood of so many other Shaheeds had painted in RED the Flag of Sindh! Long Live Sindh, Sindhyata and people of entire world.
ڪُڇان تَہ ڪافَرُ ٿيان؍ ماٺ ڪيان تَہ مُشرِقُ؍
رُڳو “ھاٸي گھوڙا” ڪَرِڻَ سان مُصِيبَتَ ٽَرِي ڪونَہ وِيندِي؍
رُڳو “جِٸي سِنڌ” چَوَڻَ سان سِنڌ ماتا زِندَہ ڪونَہ ٿِي وِيندِي
رُڳو مُنھُ مَٿو پِٽِڻَ سان سِنڌڙِيٸَ جِي سِينڌ سِڌِي ڪونَہ ٿِي وِيندِي؍
ڳالھيۇن ھاڻي گھٽ ڪرڻيۇن آھِن؍ عَملِي پِريڪٽِيڪل ڪَمُ وَڌِيڪَ؍
ڇا ڪَجي؟ جَواب ھِيٸُ آھي اَنگريزِيٸَ ۾؍
Sindhis! STAND UP AND BE COUNTED! IF YOU WANT TO LIVE, DIE FOR YOUR MOTHERLAND, YOUR FATHERLAND, SINDH!
And, Non-Sindhis, the Panaahgeers, the gate-crashers: LOVE SINDH ‘n LOVE SINDHI LANGUAGE, CULTURE. HERITAGE, HISTRY, VALUES and Way of Life or else LEAVE SINDH!
واڪا ڪَرڻُ مۇن وَسِ؍ ٻُڌَڻُ ڪَمُ ٻَروچَ جو؍
هي ڌرتي اسان سنڌين جو ننگ آ؍ ڪيرُ آھي جيڪو جِيجَلِ سِنڌڙِي جي پوتِيٸَ؍ رَئي ۽ لوٸِيٸَ جِي لَڄَ رَکي؟ اچو تہ سنڌ جي سينڌ سنواريون ڌڻين شاد ۽ آباد رکيوَ! ساٿ سلامت، قوم سلامت، سنڌ سلامت، سدائين گڏ، الله واهي، پنھنجي دعاءن ۾ ياد رکندا،
خادم دٸاگوُ احمد مخدوم؍
The writer is Educationist, Human Rights Activist, Inter-Faith Dialogue Leader, & Writer.
Courtesy: Sindhi e-lists/ e-groups, August 9th, 2012 + Facebook