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written:by pak-sartaj samejo 
from sukkur

Sindhis are across the border in Pakistan too. There they write in the Perso-Arabic script, while in India the Devanagari is used.

History of Sindhi Language: Sindhi is actually an offshoot of some of the dialects of the Vedic Aryans. Sindh, on the north west of undivided India, had always been the first to bear the onslaught of the never-ending invaders, and as such absorbed Hindi, Persian, Arabic, Turkish, English and even Portuguese. Sindh is where Persian and Indian cultures blended, for the area was introduced to Islam in 712AD. Thus, very little of Sindhi literature of the earlier period has survived. The Summara and Summa periods are virtually blank except for the few poems of Hamad, Raju and Isack. The heroic ballads of this period set to music by Shah Abdul Karim (1538-1625) are the earliest records of the Sindhi language.

Real flourish of Sindhi poetic talent came during the last stages of the 18th jcentury. Although the time was not appropriate for cultural developments as invaders repeatedly plundered the country during this period. Several works like Shah Abdul Latif's Shah-Jo-Rasalo, the magnum opus of Sindhi literature, were produced.

It describes the life of a common man, the sorrows and sufferings of the ill-starred heroes of ancient folklore. Sachal, another eminent, poet closely followed Shah Abdul Karim. He was a Sufi rebel poet who did not adhere to any religion and denounced religious radicals. The poet Saami was a complete contrast to Kari, more pious than poetical, yet possessing a charm of his own. There was an excess of songsters in Sindhi who recited similar ideas and themes in varied tones. The notables among them are Bedil, his son Bekas, and Dalpat. Gul Mohamad introduced Persian forms of poetry replacing the native baits and Kafees. Mirza Kaleech Beg who composed on the same lines contributed a lot to Sindhi literature.

Dayaram Gidumal and Mirza Kaleech were two of the early prose writers. The former was a great scholar and he was famous mainly for his metaphysical writings. The noted lexicographer and essayist Parmanand Mewaram wrote essays that educated and instructed both the young and the old. This peer group also comprised of Bherumal Meherchand, Lalchand Amardinomal and Jethmal Parsram, and Acharya Gidwani, N. R. Malkani and Dr H. M. Gurbuxani. The Partition of India however has not put a brake on the literary output of Sindhi. Plays and poetry have continued to develop, but their themes have changed. Music and beauty are no longer favoured, while poverty, filth and moral degradation rule the mind of the poets. A very crude variety of stories, though popular, are now the representatives of the Sindhi literature. Essay writing has witnessed a far greater interest on the side of the writers. Sindhi literature is thus a far more junior member of the family of Indian literature.

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  • written by SARTAJ SAMEJO

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