As I turned the pages of Calcutta Times this morning I came across a nice article on Kolkata from the eyes of Gulzar Saab. The article named “NAHI TOH TRAM JAL JAYEGI…” recounted his memories of Kolkata ~ the clichés and the contradictions. Reading the article gave me a fresh feeling in the foggy (sorry smoggy) morning. Specially the verse, Kolkatta by Gulzar saab which complemented the article really struck a chord within.
Yahan fuse bahut udte hain
Lekin light kabhie nahin jati…
The words really reverberates the spirit of Kolkata and the Kolkatans which thankfully haven’t changed yet in spite of the WAVE OF PORIBORTON (did I sound political?) that’s sweeping across Bengal. How true the words were and will be (hopefully). Thank you Gulzar saab for such magical words… they really made my morning.
Recounting his early years in Calcutta he said… “I’ve seen trams being set ablaze and yet, life would still go on”. Holding on to these memories he humorously reminisced, “If I had a tiff at home with Rakhee (Gulzar), I’d remove the matchbox from her sight. Nahin toh tram jal jayegi! Revolutions have bred in Bengal and yet, it’s the same city that has the laziest people too…” [Yes Gulzar Saab I can offer myself as a testimony for that :)]
His love for the City of Joy is heavily manifested when he says, “Although there is nothing like the feel of one’s mother tongue, I’d still say I wish my mother tongue was both Punjabi and Bengali.”
In the end when he was asked if he misses the clichés in these changing times he replied, “I notice a change. But the burning wire has to keep burning. Woh thanda nahin hona chahiye…” .
Don’t worry Gulzaar saab we won’t let the fire to die down nor we will let the blazes to cool down. Because to keep up to your urges we have our political perverses who can’t assure anything but setting fire to buses. They can’t promise you a positive revolution which you have recounted but they can at least say…
“…. Nahin toh bus e jal jayegi!”
Right now what we want Gulzar Saab is the magic of your words that can ward this evil off your beloved Kolkata. The words that will heal the wounds left on your city by the political savagery. The words that will lend fresh air to those who are otherwise suffocated by this hostile air of politics. So waiting for your Kolkatta part II.
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