Pakistan should mind all of its languages!

Scanned image of the official letter signed by a British commissioner in Sindh on August 29, 1857 declaring Sindhi as ‘official language’. It states that applications written in Persian would not be accepted, and, if anybody wants to submit it in Persian, a word-by-word Sindhi translation must also be attached with that to make it acceptable.

Pakistan is an unfortunate country which, instead of actually celebrating the invaluable diversity of its ages-old cultures and languages itself, has been suppressing every voice raised in its favor.

Although it is a question of simple ‘recognition’ of cultures which actually form the ‘federation’, this issue has always been dealt with purely on political grounds, not knowing that this simple act of recognition (the government has nothing to show for actively promoting its cultures) will add to the strength of the country.

It’s not diversity but uniformity which has been propagated through the state or the so-called ‘national media’ – notion of being ‘one’ nationhood has been propagated so much so that the country has inappropriately been called a single nation. This concept has been propagated by the state and inculcated in the minds of the people to the extent that the real identities of the nations – Sindhi, Baloch, Pakhtoon, Seraiki, etc – have virtually evaporated, and the ones speaking for their separate identities are thought of as a threat to the country and, thus, should be ridded. Continue reading

Amnesty International titled him ‘Prisoner of Conscience’

Saiin GM Syed

Highlights of life of legendary, Saain GM Syed.

Saeen G. M. [Syed was] son of Syed Mohammed Shah Kazmi, descendant of a famous saint of Sindh, Syed Haider Shah Kazmi, of whose mausoleum, he [was] the Sajjada-nashin. He was born at the village Sann in Dadu District, Sindh, on January 17, 1904. His father passed away when he was only sixteen months old. He has had no formal schooling. Whatever he learnt was self-tutored. By dint of hard work, he attained mastery over Sindhi and English languages. He was also conversant with Arabic and Persian languages. History, Philosophy and Political science were his favorite subjects of study.

  • At an early age of fourteen years, he started his career as an activist.
  • In 1919 he became Chairman of School Board of his own Tahsil.
  • Subsequently, he was elected as a President of Karachi District Local Board in 1929. He later became its President.
  • In 1930, he organized Sindh Hari (peasants) Conference and became its Secretary.
  • In 1937, he was for the first time elected a member of Sindh Legislative Assembly.
  • In 1938, he joined the All-India Muslim League. In 1940, he became Minister of Education in Sindh.
  • In 1941, he became one of the members of the Central Committee of the Muslim League.
  • In 1943, he became President of Sindh Muslim League.
  • In 1944, he played a pivotal role in politics and got a resolution passed in the Sindh Assembly in favor of Pakistan, which was the pioneer resolution of its kind in the whole of undivided India.
  • In 1946, conditions compelled him to dissociate from the Muslim League, and formed a new party named Progressive Muslim League. The same year he was elected as leader of the Coalition Party in the Sindh Assembly.
  • In 1954, he acted as Chairman of Sindhi Adabi Board.
  • In 1955, he played an active part in the formation of Pakistan National Party.
  • In 1966, he founded Bazm-e-Soofia-e Sindh.
  • In 1969, he formed Sindh United Front.
  • Getting disappointed from All-Pakistan national politics, he founded in 1973 the ‘Jeay Sindh’ movement.

Mr. Syed is the author of more than sixty five (65) books. His books are on numerous subjects, ranging from literature to politics, religion and culture etc. He was himself a mystic had a lot of love and regard for mystics of all faiths. Besides being a man of immense learning, Mr. Syed possesses a personality that was graceful and poised. Highly cultured and refined manners, hospitality and geniality were the two glaring traits of his character. Wit and humor were the keynotes of his personality. He respected all genuine difference of opinions. For decades, Sindh and Sindhi people had constituted the center of his interest and activity, and all his love energies were devoted to their good. GM Syed proposed the Pakistan Resolution, 1940 in the Sindh Assembly, which ultimately resulted in the creation of Pakistan. However, he became the first political prisoner of Pakistan because of his differences with the leadership of the country, as he believed that they had deceived the Sindhis.

In 1971 , disappointed with the national politics, GM Syed found no option but to demand the Right of Self Determination for the people of Sindh. Mr. G.M. Syed is founder of ‘JEAY SINDH’ Movement which is aimed at achieving SINDHUDESH. For his bold expression of opinion and views after the creation o Pakistan, he was been kept either in jail-or in solitary confinement for the: period of more than 30 years.

On 19th January 1992, GM Syed was put under house arrest and his house was declared a sub-jail. He has been detained without trial until his death and has been adopted “Prisoner of Conscience” by Amnesty International (ASA 33/WU02/94).

Taken from http://www.sindhudesh.com/gmsyed/syed-bio.htm

The Eternal!

Following is the shair of a Sindhi poet, Juman Darbadar, that Saeen GM Syed would like a lot:

!وٺي هر هر جنم وربو، مٺا مهراڻ ۾ ملبوTranslation (literal): Taking life after life, o dear! we’ll return to meet in Mehran (Sindh); Darkness will disappear, (and) we’ll meet in brightness (when there’ll be peace and prosperity)!