KARACHI: The people of Pakistan, particularly Sindh, have been deprived of watching, enjoying and relaxing ever-smiling performance of new trend of energetic Sufi-dance singing of world-famous singer – Allan Fakir -.
His son, a Sufi singer, Faheem Allan Fakir, has been trying hard to fill the vacuum created after death of Allan Fakeer however the music-lovers and followers of Allan Fakir greatly miss the legend.
Mr Allan Fakir was born in 1932 at a small village near Aamri, taluka Manjhand of district Jamshoro (formerly Dadu). Aamri is located along Jamshoro-Sehwan highway, some 40 kilometers far from Sehwan Sharif, the resting place of Sufi saint Hazrat Lal Shahbaz Qalandar.
Allan Fakeer belonged to Manganhars family and his father used to beat the drum and sing traditional songs at wedding and other festivities like small functions etc. Allan’s mother left the world soon after his birth. He was in state of loneliness after death of her mother that compelled him to sing sad songs.
While searching for a motherly love, Allan Fakir left his home and reached at the tomb of Sufi-saint Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, Bhit Shah and stayed there for a long time where he started learning singing.
His father was his mentor. Although, Allan Fakir never attended any school but his memory was sharp which helped him sing Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai’s poetry at the shrine every night while wearing a crown-like turban on his head.
Allan Fakir sung Latifi Raag at the shrine for some twenty years and suddenly he met with renowned producer – Abdul Kareem Baloch – who introduced him in Radio Pakistan and Pakistan Television Corporation at Hyderabad. His voice reached almost every single house in Pakistan and worldwide which made him a ‘performing legend’. The Sindh’s culture department also gave him a job at Institute of Sindhiology, Jamshoro.
The mixture of Urdu song ‘Tere Ishq Main Jo Bhi and Sindhi song Jake Manhyar Manyar jointly sung by Allan Fakir and Muhammad Ali Sheiki in 1986 brought tremendous fame all around the world.
Moreover, Allan Fakir also sang a number of songs mostly in Sindhi that included – Tiri Pawanda, Alif Allah, Boli Muhinjhi and the world famous Itne Baray Jeevan Sagar Main Tum Ne Pakistan Diya, OOO Alllah OOO Allah. Besides performing on radio and television, Allan Fakir also voiced over for a number of Sindhi films. He also performed in various countries of the world including the United States of America, United Kingdom, Germany and Saudi Arabia and received extraordinary appreciation.
Mr Allan Fakir received ‘Pride of Performance’ Award from the former president General Zia Ul Haq in 1980. Besides this, he also received Shah Latif Award, Shahbaz Award and Kandhkot Award. Allan Fakeer died on July 4, 2000 at Liaqat National Hospital after paralysis attack. He left behind his wife, three sons and two daughters. He is buried at Jamshoro Housing Society Graveyard.
Hemu Kalani – A true martyr of Sindh
KARACHI: Sindh has always been blessed with thousands of heroic characters at the time of independence and the sons of soil preferred death for the sake of safety and security of their motherland. One such heroic character is Hemu Kalami.
Hemu Kalani son of Pesumal Kalani and Jethi Bai was born in a Jain family of Sukkur, Sindh on March 23, 1923. His father Pesumal was a doctor by profession. Hemu completed his initial education from Tilak High School, Sukkur from where he passed his matriculation in 1942. Hemu was a nationalist since early age.
Hemu Kalani was greatly admired by the struggle and engagements of his uncle late Dr Mangh Ram Kalani who was a prominent congress leader. Hemu became member of ‘Swaraj Sena’ (a student organization) which was affiliated with the All-India Students Federation (AISF).
As a young boy, Hemu Kalani led the youth of his town and campaigned for boycott of foreign good and convinced people to use Swadeshi goods. Later, he started revolutionary activities and took part in protests aimed at kicking out the British. He started joining political gatherings, demonstrations, strikes, raising slogan of ‘Inquilab Zindabad’ and ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’.
In October 1942, the revolutionary group Swaraj Sena received secret information that a train was carrying weapons that would be used against freedom fighters in Sindh. Hemu and his friends decided not to allow/derail the train near Sukkur however, according to historians, Hemu was held by the British.
Later, the British authorities subjected Hemu Kalani to third degree torture to reveal names of his other companions but he never opened up his mouth and bravely bore the torture. He took the blame upon himself citing what he did was justified in retaliation what British were doing in crushing the freedom struggle with arms and ammunitions.
Sindh was under Martial Law and Hemu Kalani’s case was referred to Martial Law Court at Hyderabad/Sukkur where he was sentenced life imprisonment for treason against the British Empire.
Hemu’s lawyer Sattar Pirzada made an offer to Kalani’s uncle Dr Manga Ram “If Hemu could sign a written apology, the British would relax his death and he simply refused”. The people of Sindh filed a petition before Viceroy for Hemu Kalani’s mercy however the condition of mercy was to tell names of other co-conspirators which he refused to shared. Hence, Hemu Kalani was hanged on January 21, 1943.
Jalal Chandio – King of Yaktara, Chapri, Sindhi music
KARACHI: There are only few people especially those associated with the music industry who became so famous that their posters, art and songs are played even after their death. Jalal Chandio, king of yaktara, chapri (musical instruments) is one of them who is still alive in the hearts and minds of people of Pakistan particularly Sindh.
Jalal Chandio son of Haji Faiz Muhammad Chandio was born in 1944 in a small village namely Phul, Moro, district Naushehro Feroz. His father owned a cattle farm and wanted his son Jalal to get education.
With no interest towards education, Jalal Chandio was sent to New Jatoi (Nawan Jatoi), the hometown of former premier Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi, to learn tailoring. However, he quit tailoring and started shepherding his cattle and croons.
With his interest in singing, Jalal’s parents sent him to Ghotki district to learn music under the supervision of Ustad Ali Gul Mahar where he learnt basics of music and started performing at shrines of various Sufis of the area. He had a loud voice which needed no loudspeakers to perform while his unique style of playing Yaktara and Chapri was liked very much.
Jalal Chandio also introduced the trend of Farmaish, a unique style of pronouncing names of his listeners in his singing that also gained too much fame.
In 1970, a private company – Paras Audio Cassette – released his first cassette album which included his song هل نه مٺو ايڏي لوڏ ڪري . The song gained popularity and made him singer of the Sindh province. After that he also made his entry in Radio Pakistan and Television and started performing live in the shows.
Before Jalal Chandio, the population of rural areas used to listen to Indian old songs and Pakistani Punjabi songs however Jalal Chandio’s songs replaced the music and made his way to almost every house, tractors and trucks. The love of his listeners reached at the extreme level that his posters could be seen on trucks and tractors till today.
In 1985, a famous film producer Shah Asad made a film – Jalal Chandio – on life of Mr Jalal Chandio in which he played a leading role. The film touched the highest peak of popularity and earned extraordinary revenue boosting Sindhi film industry.
Mr Jalal Chandio also influenced many singers following his unique style of singing that included Rubina Hyderi, Taj Mastani. He also has a number of music students (shagirds) in Siraiki districts of Punjab and Balochistan districts. He had released thousands of audio cassettes in his life.
Being the spiritual follower of Mahdi Shah, Jalal Chandio performed on Urs of almost all the Sufi saints including Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, Lal Shahbaz Qalandar, Sachal Sarmat etc. He received many awards among which the prominent was Latif Award from Sindh’s culture department. Jalal Chadio died on January 10, 2001 following kidney failure. He is buried in his native town Phul, Naushehro Feroz.
Hoshu Sheedi – ‘Marsoon, Marsoon Sindh Na Deson
KARACHI: Pakistan has been blessed with hundreds of brave people who sacrificed their precious lives to ensure safety of the motherland. One such character is General Hosh Muhammad Sheedi commonly known as Hoshu Sheedi who raised the world-famous slogan and laid down his life while fighting with British.
The people of Sindh attaches emotional attachment with General Hosh Muhammad Sheedi Qambrani who chanted slogan ‘Marsoon, Marsoon Sindh Na Deson’ [We would die before giving up Sindh].
Even these days, if anyone talks against division of Sindh, the people get emotionally charged and become ready for any kind of sacrifice for their motherland.
Hosh Muhammad was born in 1801. He belonged to Sheedi family of African-origin while his father was an employee at the house of then ruler of Sindh – Mir Fateh Mohammad Talpur -. Before joining the army, Hosho also worked at the residence of Talpurs.
General Hosh Muhammad Sheedi, then, made supreme commander of Sindh’s Talpur army led by Mir Sher Muhammad Khan Talpur.
As the British army conquered the Khairpur Mirs fort, a number of people wanted to surrender before the British ruler however Hosh Muhammad Sheedi was the only one who refused to do and decided to fight.
With smaller number of troops, Hoshu Sheedi vigorously fought with the British army with bravery during Talpur rule in Sindh in the battle of Miyani or Dubbo in 1843. In between the fighting, Hoshu Sheedi said that “Marsoon, Marsoon Sindh Na Deson” “Even though we will die but we won’t give you Sindh”. Hosho lost his life while fighting for Sindh on March 24, 1843.
British commanding offier Sir Charles James Napier was inspired by the bravery and his love for his motherland and buried him with full military honours in Dubee near Tando Jam Road, Hyderabad, Pakistan. Hosho is considered a Sindhi hero. The historical mausoleum of Hosho Sheedi is located in Dubee, a small village which is some 10 kilometers far from Hyderabad. The purpose of the mausoleum is to pay tribute to the war martyrs and it was declared as heritage site by the Sindh government.
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