By Dr. Ahmed Makhdoom
“Watthee hara hara janamu waribo, mitthaa Mehraann mein milbo”
“Every birth each ‘n every time we’ll keep returning to Sindh Mo0therland,
Dearest! Each ‘n every time we’ll keep meeting on banks of Mehran grand”
(Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
(Note: Mehran – Sindhuu Nadee, Indus
River; Grand ‘n Great River of Sindh)
Today, 7th April 2013, is the First Anniversary of the departure of that magnificent, monumental and marvellous Sindhi leader, Saaeen Bashir Khan Quraishi, from his Motherland, Sindh and from our midst, his beloved kindred folks, Maaruunarraa of his Maleer! Integrity ‘n Credibility, Humility ‘n Humbleness are some of the most important ‘n formidable qualities in a real ‘n true, verdant ‘n veritable leader of a great ‘n glorious Nation! His integrity was impeccable! His credibility was impregnable! His humility exemplary! His humbleness exceptional! If Sindh be the Queen of the World, he was her Crowning Glory!
This is my humble homage ‘n a tearful tribute to Bashir Khan Quraishi on his 1st Death Anniversary! I am sharing herewith my humble and modest homage and a tearful and heart-wrenching tribute that I posted on 7th April, 2012, when we heard the passing-away of this wonderful man, a real and true leader of Sindhis and one of my dearest and closest friend! He was venomously, wily and viciously poisoned by the savages, brutes and barbarians who tyrannically rule, terrorise, torture and torment our glorious motherland, Sindh, and the simple, naive, gullible and docile indigenous people of Sindh, today!
Extremely saddened and shocked to learn about the passing-away of one of the most cherished, loved and illustrious son of Sindh. We raise our humble hands towards the Magnificent Lord (Allah, God, Ishwar, Ahura-Mazda, Waaheguru) in sacred prayer, to grant our brother Bashir Khan Qureshi, a choicest place in His Gardens. May His Soul Rest in Peace! May the Good Lord give courage and fortitude to his entire family, colleague, friends and millions of Sindhis in Sindh, Hind and worldwide Diaspora he had left behind mourning, to bear this extremely heavy untimely and irreplaceable loss with patience and forbearance. Aameen.
We also beseech the Most Beneficent Creator to shower His Mercy and Benevolence over his beloved Motherland, Sindh, now suddenly and sadly left without the great helmsman and, I must say, anchorless in this turbulent ocean of our existence.
Bashir Qureshi was a leader extraordinaire, an exceptional and exquisite human being and a bright and brilliant sun that shone and glittered our Fatherland, Sindh!
He was the roaring and raging voice of Sindh, the versatile leader of Sindh, the brave and courageous Sindhi, the humble and loving human being is no more with us! He fought for Sindh, he agitated for the rights of downtrodden people of Sindh, he vociferously, vehemently and valiantly declared Independence and Freedom for Sindh and, sadly, he paid the ultimate price – the martyrdom. Now, it is up to people of Sindh to RESOLVE, UNITE and FIGHT for the Freedom of their Motherland!
Filial children of Sindh – boys and girls, men and women, young and old – MUST now endeavour to satisfy their fallen leader’s dream and fulfil his hopes, yearnings and aspirations.
The glorious ship of our motherland, Sindh, was so ably, bravely, passionately and fervently and, of-course, single-handedly, steered and guided by the indomitable, invincible and indefatigable will and leadership of Bashir Qureshi, the ardent believer and follower of the great Sindhi leader, Saaeen G.M. Syed’s legacy, style and philosophy. Now, Sindh is left alone, bewildered, broken, shocked and in extreme pain and anguish.
“Wiyaa mora maree, hanju na rahyo heikrro,
Watanu thhiyo waree, kuurrani kaanyarani jo.”
“Peacocks in my land dance no more,
Swans in my lakes swim no more,
My beautiful motherland is ruled,
By lying tyrants, cruelly ‘tis slewed.”
(Shah Bhittai: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
Each time and every time that I had an honour and privilege to visit my beloved Motherland on an annual pilgrimage, I was always blessed, illuminated and enriched by the few serene and tranquil moments
that I had spent with Bashir Qureshi at his house at Gulshan-e-Hadeed, Karachi, just a walking distance from my brother’s house, where I used to stay.
We talked about Sindh, nothing but Sindh, because Sindh was his passion, the struggle for Free, Sovereign and
Independent Sindh was his mission and the guiding of Sindh to take its God-given, heavenly-destined, humanly-ordained and historically-proclaimed rightful place amongst the comity of civilised and empowered nations of the world was his vision as he always used to recite, with great gusto and fervour as well as tears in his eyes, this couplet of Saaeen Ustad Bukhari:
سنڌ سان اهڙي جند جڙي جو ٻيا دل وارا وسري
جيئي سنڌ سدائين جيئي ٻيا سڀ نعرا وسري ويا،
“Sindhu saan ahrree jindu jarree, jo mbiyaa dil waaraa wisree
Jiyei Sindhu sadaaeen jiyei,
mbiyaa sabhu naaraa wisree wiyaa.”
“Such is my love for Mother Sindh, Other beloveds all forgotten,
‘Long live, forever live, dearest Sindh! Yes, other slogans all
Bukhari: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
Bashir Khan Qureshi was a leader par excellence and a human being extraordinaire. Personally, he was a wonderful
friend and a very generous and hospitable carer and comforter to his guests at
his home. As Chairman of Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM), the Long Live Sindh National Front, he carried himself with great sense of responsibility and
immaculate character. He was born on 10th August 1959 at Motanpur Muhalla, Ratodero, Larkano, Sindh. It was not his time yet to go to those further Heavenly Abodes as he left us and this mortal world so suddenly and untimely on 7th April, 2012 at a very young and ripe age of just 54 years.
I will sadly miss his inspiring company during my next and subsequent pilgrimages to my Motherland! The glorious land of Sindh and the generous and gregarious Sindhis will miss his wise helmsman-ship, courage, enthusiasm, patriotism and charismatic leadership.
Bashir Qureshi joined the movement for the liberation of Sindh from the ignominious chains of slavery brutally tightened around the neck of Sindh by the Punjab-dominated deep Pakistani security establishment
in 1976 when he was just 17 years old. This movement known as Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM) – Long Live Sindh National Front – was founded by the Great Helmsman of Sindh, Saaeen G.M. Syed. As an ordinary worker and member of this Front, Bashir carried out his duties and responsibilities with great zeal and patriotic ideals, fervour and ardour, enthusiasm and exuberance and with remarkable energy and prowess.
During the 1980s, Saaeen G.M. Syed was jailed, even though he was old and feeble, and Bashir has sagacity and love for Syed and Sindh organised many protest rallies and hunger strikes, where he was always in the forefront. After the passing-away of Saaeen
G.M. Syed, the baton of leadership was passed over to Bashir Khan Qureshi, who performed his duties as a successor of the great Syed with so much bravado and competence, earnestness and eagerness and with complete reverence and loyalty to his Motherland, Sindh.
During his Long March for the Freedom of Sindh he was threatened by the Security establishment, shot at by the heartless and senseless Armed Forces and savagely jailed for several years by the dictatorial Punjab-dominated Secret Service and Intelligence agencies of this security state.
And, despite all brutalities and animal-like behaviour of security establishment vile and arrogant authorities, Bashir never lost his patience, calm-nature and candour. He mobilised masses of Sindh to carry out peaceful, non-violent protests on the streets of cities, town and villages of Sindh from Karachi to Kashmore, many a times bringing the heavily-armed savage civil and martial authorities down onto their knees. He vociferously demanded the economical, linguistic, cultural, political and hereditary rights for the hapless, helpless and long-suffering people of Sindh.
Only recently in the month of March, 2012, he successfully organised a peaceful and non-violent 100 km long march right in the very heart of Sindh, the capital city of Sindh Karachi, demanding Independence and Sovereignty of Sindh. This Gandhian, non-violent march of millions of the people of Sindh, led by their effervescent and exuberant leader, brave and valiant leader, Bashir Qureshi, was peaceful, but extremely effective and message-giving. It brought shivers to the rank and files of the tyrannical and terrorist civil and military establishment of the savage deep security establishment, giving them this message: “Sindh is Alive! Sindh means business! Sindh want Freedom!
Perhaps, such a tremendous success of the march of the millions led by Bashir, jolted the authorities who had earlier killed and massacred in cold blood, many a Sindhi nationalists,including Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Benazir Bhutto and the leaders of JSQM.
They had to ‘remove’ Bashir! And, they did it! Should Sindh and Sindhis take this calculated murder of their leader lying down? If Sindhis call themselves the sons and daughters of their Jeejal Sindh, then they must STAND UP and BE COUNTED!
It is no point demanding and screaming for Justice for ‘Justice’ in this savage state is dead and gone! Did Benazir get any justice? Countless murdered Sindhi Nationalists – did they receive any justice? It is hopeless to even appeal to the civilised world – they are too busy in their own comfort zone! People of Sindh must take their own destiny into their own hands! And, they must do it NOW or never will there remain a Sindh, whom they call their ‘Mother!’
Bashir Qureshi, the valiant son of Sindh is gone – he will never come back! He is irreplaceable! There never will be another ‘Bashir Qureshi!’ His tragic and untimely death has left a deep and wide vacuum in the land of Sindh!
اَڄُ نَہ اوطاقُن
۾؍ سي طالِبَ تَنواريِن؍
آديسي اُٿي ويا؍
مَڑھيۇن مۇن ماريِن؍
ھۇجي جيٸَ کي جياريِن؍
سي لاھۇتي لَڏي ويا؍
“Acju na otaaqun mein, sei taliba tanwaareen,
Aadeisee uthee wayaa, marrhiyuun muun mareen,
Huu jei jeeya khei jiyaareen, sei laahuutee laddei wayaa.”
“Alas! Worthy devotees found not in courtyards today,
Noble disciples gone forever, their solemn absence does slay,
Filial ones nourished our souls, no more in motherland stay.”
(Shah Bhittai: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
However, can this huge vacuum left by the tragic passing-away of Bashir Qureshi be ever filled? Yes, it can
be, it has to be, it must be and it definitely and surely must be filled! How?
O ye Sindhis in Sindh, Hind and in worldwide Diaspora let us be guided by the message of the Soul of Sindh, murshid Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai who wants us to be a butterfly. We must seek the transformation that our soul yearns for today. We shall know many forms before we take another flight.
If we so choose we shall become butterfly and fly with abandon into the sun:
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 humble homage, my tearful tribute, my sincere
salute to the great martyred leader of Sindh, Saaeen Bashir Khan Qureshi:
جو قومَ جِياري؍ اُھو جِٸَندو رَھَندو؍
جو عامُ اُجاري؍ سو جِٸَندو رَھَندو؍
مۇنکي تارِيخَ ۽ تَقدِيرَ؍ ڏِنِي پَڪَ آھي؍
جو سِنڌُ سَنواري؍ اُھو جِٸَندو رَھَندو؍
“Jo qaum jiyaarei, uho jiyando rahando,
Jo aamu ujaarei, so jiyando rahando,
Muunkhei taareekha aeen taqdeera, ddinee paka aahei,
Jo Sindhu sanwaarei, uho jiyando rahando.”
“Awaken and rouse the nation, he shall live eternally,
Brighten and beautify his people, shall live till
History and destiny, glory and grandeur, we have
Motherland Sindh, who adorn, shall attain
(Ustad Bukhari: Translated by Ahmed Makhdoom)
جا دودا، بَهادُر ۽ جوڌا ٻَچِڙَئوُ، سوُرهيَه، سيبتيوُن ۽ سياڻيوُن نياڻِيوُن؛
ٿيو! پَنهِنجي تَقديِرَ پَنهِنجي ئي هَٿَن ۾ کَڻو! اَچو تَه سِنڌيَتَ ڏانهَن وَڌَئوُن!
اَچو تَه جيِجَل سِنڌُ جي سيِنڌِ سَنواريوُن! واڪا ڪَرِڻُ موُن وَسِ!
Mourning the loss of a beautiful, bright and brilliant son of Sindh.
Dr. Ahmed Makhdoom, is an Educationist, Human Rights Activist, Inter-Faith Dialogue Leader.
Courtesy: Sindhi e-lists/ e-groups, April 7, 2013.