Photo: Rahat Indori/Twitter
Photo: Rahat Indori/Twitter

Log har mod pe

ruk ruk ke

sambhalte kyun hain

Itna darte hain toh

Ghar se nikalte kyun hai

Like all of us, famed poet and shayar Rahat Indori was confined to his house ever since the pandemic broke out and the lockdown began.

But unlike lesser mortals, the COVID-19 'scare' could not muzzle the sensitive poet. He had an indomitable spirit, and a heart which bled when Indore was defamed.

When two women doctors sustained injuries recently after a medical team was attacked at Tat Patti Bakhal area, Rahat was vocal about the incident.

"...I hang my head in shame because of what happened in my city. These people are our protectors. They had come to check on our health and to help us. Everybody is shocked at the way they were treated. Indore is a very cultured city. The incident brings a bad name to not just Indore, but the entire country," he said.

Even today when he had tested coronavirus positive, he was full of life and zest and went on to say, "Do not visit me or make phone calls to take my news, check Twitter or social media for my updates."

Little did Indore know that one of its brightest sons had very little "time left".

With a career span of 50 years, Indori was known for lyrics of songs like ‘M Bole Toh’ from Munnabhai MBBS (2003), ‘Chori Chori Jab Nazrein Mili’ from Kareeb (1998), ‘Koi jaye to le aye' from Ghatak’ (1996), and ‘Neend Churai Meri’ from Ishq (1997).

Earlier this year, his poem "Bulati hai magar jane ka nahi" went viral on social media, rendering him a sensation among the youth.

Son of the soil Indori did his schooling from Nutan School and graduation from Islamia Karimia College, also in Indore.

“He suffered two heart attacks today and could not be saved. He was admitted to hospital on Sunday, after testing positive for COVID-19. He had 60% pneumonia,” said Dr Vinod Bhandari of Sri Aurobindo Hospital.

Indori’s Twitter bio described him as an “Indian Poet, Painter, Bollywood Lyricist”.

And very rightly so. Among the poet’s most powerful lines are “Sabhi ka khoon hai shamil yahan ki mitti mein; Kisi ke baap ka Hindustan thodi hai (Everybody’s blood mingles in the soil; Hindustan does not belong solely to one)”.

In his famous tweet he had said...

Mai.n jab mar jau.n to meri alag pehchan likh dena

Lahu se meri paishani pe Hindustan likh dena

Rahat is gone, it's a sad moment for Indore and he has himself written his epitaph it seems in his own lines...

Tujhe bhulane ki tarqeeb soch rakhi hai

bas ek sharab ka bottal davoch ke rakhi hai...

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Free Press Journal