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Harivansh Rai Bachchan: An Unforgettable Name

"Mitti ka tan, masti ka man, kshan-bhar jivan– mera parichay"

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Harivansh Rai Bachchan, a Padhma Bhushan awardee for his contribution in Hindi Literature. Pexels
Harivansh Rai Bachchan, a Padhma Bhushan awardee for his contribution in Hindi Literature. Pexels
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Harivansh Rai Bachchan, a poet. That’s what most of us know other than the fact that he was the father of Amitabh Bachchan. However, he was more than that.

He was born in Allahabad, British India on 27 November 1907 to a Kayastha family. Being the second Indian to get his doctorate in English literature from Cambridge, he had also served in All India Radio. After which he was working in the External Affairs Minister, during these ten years, he was majorly associated with the evolution of Hindi as the official language. In 1966, he was also nominated to the Rajya Sabha.

Bachchan is still known as a person who enriched Hindi through his translations of major works. Omar Khayyam’s Rubaiyat, Shakespeare’s Machbeth and Othello and even the Bhagvad Gita.

Honored with Padma Bhushan for his lasting contribution to Hindi literature, with Saraswati Samman for his four volume autobiography, the Sovietland Nehru Award and the Lotus Aware for his unique work in the world of letters, his most famous poem is one his early works ‘Madhushala’. He was famous as a rebellious poet of Nayi Kavita literary movement.

He was famous as a rebellious poet of Nayi Kavita literary movement. Pixels
He was famous as a rebellious poet of Nayi Kavita literary movement. Pixels

Poems by Harivansh Rai Bachchan

1. Madhushala

“मृदु भावों के अंगूरों की आज बना लाया हाला,
प्रियतम, अपने ही हाथों से आज पिलाऊँगा प्याला,
पहले भोग लगा लूँ तेरा फिर प्रसाद जग पाएगा,
सबसे पहले तेरा स्वागत करती मेरी मधुशाला।।१।”

2. Agnipath

“तू न थकेगा कभी,
तू न रुकेगा कभी,
तू न मुड़ेगा कभी,
कर शपथ, कर शपथ, कर शपथ,
अग्निपथ अग्निपथ अग्निपथ।”

3. Ruke Na Tu

“धनुष उठा, प्रहार कर
तू सबसे पहला वार कर
अग्नि सी धधक–धधक
हिरन सी सजग सजग
सिंह सी दहाड़ कर
शंख सी पुकार कर

रुके न तू, थके न तू
झुके न तू, थमे न तू”

He used to introduce himself by saying- Mitti ka tan, masti ka man, kshan-bhar jivan– mera parichay. Pixabay
He used to introduce himself by saying- Mitti ka tan, masti ka man, kshan-bhar jivan– mera parichay. Pixabay

4. Poorv Chalne Ke Batohi

“पुस्तकों में है नहीं छापी गई इसकी कहानी,
हाल इसका ज्ञात होता है न औरों की ज़बानी,
अनगिनत राही गए इस राह से, उनका पता क्या,
पर गए कुछ लोग इस पर छोड़ पैरों की निशानी,
यह निशानी मूक होकर भी बहुत कुछ बोलती है,
खोल इसका अर्थ, पंथी, पंथ का अनुमान कर ले।
पूर्व चलने के बटोही, बाट की पहचान कर ले।”

5. Kya Karu Samvedna Lekar Tumhari

“मैं दुखी जब-जब हुआ
संवेदना तुमने दिखाई,
मैं कृतज्ञ हुआ हमेशा,
रीति दोनो ने निभाई,
किन्तु इस आभार का अब
हो उठा है बोझ भारी;
क्या करूँ संवेदना लेकर तुम्हारी?
क्या करूँ?”

6. Koshish Karne Waalon Ki Har Nahi Hoti

“लहरों से डर कर नौका पार नहीं होती
हिम्मत करने वालों की हार नहीं होती

नन्ही चींटी जब दाना लेकर चलती है
चढ़ती दीवारों पर सौ बार फिसलती है
मन का विश्वास रगों में साहस भरता है
चढ़ कर गिरना, गिर कर चढ़ना न अखरता है
आखिर उसकी मेहनत बेकार नहीं होती
कोशिश करने वालों की हार नहीं होती”

7. Vishwa Sara So Raha Hai

“हैं विचरते स्वप्न सुंदर,
किंतु इनका संग तजकर,
व्योम–व्यापी शून्यता का कौन साथी हो रहा है?
विश्व सारा सो रहा है!

भूमि पर सर सरित् निर्झर,
किंतु इनसे दूर जाकर,
कौन अपने घाव अंबर की नदी में धो रहा है?
विश्व सारा सो रहा है!”

His pen was a mighty one in the world of Hindi Literature. Pixabay
His pen was a mighty one in the world of Hindi Literature. Pixabay

8. Teer Par Kaise Ruku

तीर पर कैसे रुकूँ मैं, आज लहरों में निमंत्रण!
रात का अंतिम प्रहर है, झिलमिलाते हैं सितारे,
वक्ष पर युग बाहु बाँधे, मैं खड़ा सागर किनारे
वेग से बहता प्रभंजन, केश-पट मेरे उड़ाता,
शून्य में भरता उदधि-उर की रहस्यमयी पुकारें,

इन पुकारों की प्रतिध्वनि, हो रही मेरे हृदय में,

है प्रतिच्छायित जहाँ पर, सिंधु का हिल्लोल – कंपन!
तीर पर कैसे रुकूँ मैं,आज लहरों में निमंत्रण!

9. Dekho Toot Raha Hai Tara

“नभ के सीमाहीन पटल पर
एक चमकती रेखा चलकर
लुप्त शून्य में होती-बुझता एक निशा का दीप दुलारा।
देखो, टूट रहा है तारा।”

10. Mujhe Pukar Lo

“इसीलिए खड़ा रहा कि तुम मुझे पुकार लो!

ज़मीन है न बोलती न आसमान बोलता,
जहान देखकर मुझे नहीं जबान खोलता,
नहीं जगह कहीं जहाँ न अजनबी गिना गया,
कहाँ-कहाँ न फिर चुका दिमाग-दिल टटोलता,
कहाँ मनुष्य है कि जो उमीद छोड़कर जिया,
इसीलिए खड़ा रहा कि तुम मुझे पुकार लो”

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Living up to professional demands: Amitabh Bachchan

I am a very proud father and I am delighted that the legacy of my father continues

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Amitabh Bachchan
Amitabh Bachchan Is Living up to professional demands.

Stunts can be risky at 75, but that’s not stopping Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan from doing any of it. He says there’s always an effort to meet professional demands.

The actor, who will next be seen in “102 Not Out”, has performed stunts for his other film “Thugs of Hindostan”.

Excerpts from the interview:

Q. You’ve been off interview for quite some time now. What prompted you to stay away from interviews?

Amitabh Bachchan
Amitabh Bachchan will be in two films releasing soon.

Interviews mean being questioned by one, and the need for an answer by the other! I have had nothing to say, so what is the need for an interview. Now, there is a film on release and protocol and obligations towards media and interviews are the need of the hour for promoting what we have created, for the audience. And so here I am, selfishly, presenting myself for questioning.

Q. How has life been treating you during the past months? There were sporadic reports of ill health and injury. Has the body repaired and are you, as usual, infused with inspirational energy?

A. I have had some injuries during my work recently, which persist. These are related to some old action injuries of the past, catching up as the body ages. Treatments are on and to expect the body at this age to repair completely is wishful thinking.

Q. So one stumbles along “102 Not Out” which is your new release. Tell us what was it like like playing a 100-plus man?

The script and character analysis that was narrated to me by the director Umesh Shukla and the Writer Saumya Doshi, was to play a youthful 102. An attempt has been made!

Q. I feel your beard and white hair makes you look uncannily like painter M.F. Hussain.

A. Never thought about that. But since you say so I shall go with it.

Q. The film reunites you with Rishi Kapoor after decades. What was it like shooting with him after all these years?

A. It was as glorious, as it was all those past years and the historic films we did together. It’s not like we were separated at birth and were meeting after 27 years.
“102 Not Out” addresses itself to the question of mortality and longevity.

Also Read: At this age and time of my life, I seek peace and freedom from prominence: Amitabh Bachchan

Q. Did you have discussions on these themes with the director and your co-star?

A. I do not possess the intellectualism to delve into such deep philosophies. But yes I do know that we are born to perish someday and how wonderful if we can live that life with the fulfilment the joys and the happiness that life brings.

Q. I believe you are doing some audacious stunts in “Thugs Of Hindostan”. Aren’t these risks not worth taking at the cost of your health and well being?

A. They are audacious and they are a risk. But then, I could well slip on a banana peel and head to Thy Kingdom Come. So… we try to live up to the professional demands required of us and proceed subsequently with adequate precaution.

Q. Your daughter Shweta has turned into a novelist. Your comments on that?

I am a very proud father and I am delighted that the legacy of my father continues. IANS