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Sahir_Ludhianvi,_(1921-80)One of our most favorite lyricists, Sahir Ludhianvi would have celebrated his 94th birthday tomorrow. In an article in livemint, author Akshay Manwani, who wrote the biography Sahir Ludhianvi: The People’s Poet, writes of Sahir’s sensitivities to the human condition and how his emotions influenced his work.

Below is an excerpt from the article that can be accessed at: Remembering Sahir Ludhianvi

“…But there is another, possibly more significant reason for Ludhianvi’s dysfunctional romantic endeavours. To him, love became an obstacle in his ability to empathize with the suffering of the marginalized. His willingness to sacrifice love or seek solace in the travails of humanity after a failed romantic episode is a theme that plays out regularly in his poetry. In Kisi Ko Udaas Dekh Kar, he wrote:

“Tumhaare gham ke siva aur bhi toh gham hain mujhe
Nijaat jinse main ek lehza pa nahin sakta…
Yeh oonche oonche makaanon ki dyodhiyon ke taley
Har ek gaam pe bhookey bhikaariyon ki sada…
Yeh karkhaanon mein lohon ka shor-o-gul jisme
Hai dafn laakhon gareebon ki rooh ka nagma…
Yeh gham bahut hain meri zindagi mitaaney ko
Udaas rehkey mere dil ko aur ranjh na do.”

(I have other sorrows to tend besides yours
Those from which I cannot free myself even for an instant…
Look outside the gates of these imposing structures
At every step, there are mendicants to see…
In the din of machines operating in factories
The melancholic tales of the poor can be heard…
All these troubles are enough to consume my life
By staying despondent do not burden my heart any more)”

Happy Birthday to the magician, Sahir Ludhianvi!