Aaj Bazar mein – Faiz Ahmed Faiz (13 February 1911 – 20 November 1984)
Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Pakistani poet and journalist, who combined in his poetry the themes of love, beauty, and political ideals into a vision of a better and peaceful world. Due to his opposition to the military dictators, Faiz spent several years in prison and was forced to go into exile at different times in his career.
Faiz Ahmed Faiz is amongst the most famous poets of 20th century. Faiz, who was hounoured by Lenin Peace Prize in 1963, was seldom subjected to arrests by the pro-imperialist military regimes of Pakistan. Once, during the dictatorship of General Zia-ul-Haq, he was arrested and taken to the police station in front of the public. In this context, he wrote ‘Aaj Bazar mein’.
The video starts with a ‘mushairah’ (public recitation), where Faiz presents the poem, and describes its context. Then the video, with the melodious voice of Nayyara Noor in the background singing the verses of Faiz, shows the Sufi culture of Pakistan, which was suppressed by the religious fundamentalist government of Zia-ul-Haq. Then, there are some clips of public floggings and public hangings of political dissidents, which were employed to ingrain terror in the people of Pakistan. Public floggings were a norm during Zia’s time.