Tue. Nov 24th, 2020

[Pictorial] Gilgit-Baltistan at Islamabad Literature Festival

Islamabad: One of the sessions at the recently concluded two-day Islamabad Literature Festival featured three poets from the Gilgit-Baltistan. Moderated by Nosheen Ali, Assistant Professor Habib University, the session had renowned poet Jamshed Khan Dukhi from Gilgit, Mir Aslam Hussain Saher from Skardu and Nazir Ahmad Bulbul from Gojal, Upper Hunza. The poets read their poetry and discussed various aspects of life, literature and culture in the Gilgit-Baltisan region.

Jamshed Khan Dukhi, who is also known as the Habib Jalib of Gilgit-Baltistan, won applauds from the audience for his intense poetry in which he questions the identity crisis of the region and also criticizes the clergy for failing to bring and keep the various sects of Islam together. He is the Secretary General of the Halqa-e-Arbab -e-Zauq, a well established literary forum of the region. He writes in Urdu and Shina, his mother tongue.

Aslam Hussain Saher is a seasoned poet from Skardu, the regional capital of Baltistan. He is also the president of Bazm-e-ilm-0-Fan and Editor of a regional daily named Baidar. He presented his Balti and Urdu poetry winning accolades from the audience.  His poem about Malala Yusufzai was very well received by the audience today.

Nazir Ahmad Bulbul is believed to be the best known poet of Wakhi language in Pakistan. He has also written extensively in Urdu. He has also contributed towards the Wakhi prose, by writing several unpublished short and long stories. His travelogue on Japan also waits to be published. Nazir is also an educationist, having studied at the Institute for Education Development of the Aga Khan University Karachi. He is the Principal of Al-Amyn Model School, which is one of the most successful community based centers of learning in the Gilgit-Baltistan region. Nazir writes about Wakhi identity, language but his poetry has universal appeal as he talks of respect for humanity, social transformation through literacy and respect for diversity. He read his Wakhi poetry and also shared the translation in Urdu and English.

The session was attended by renowned personalities, including Mustansir Hussain Tarar, Faryal Gohar and Tahereh Sheerazie, among others.

It is for the first time that a session had been dedicated to Gilgit-Baltistan in the Islamabad Literature Festival.

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