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Muzaffar Warsi (1933-2011): Mera Payambar Azeemtar Hai

Posted on January 29, 2011
Filed Under >Adil Najam, ATP Mushaira, People, Poetry, Religion
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Adil Najam

Muzaffar Warsi, a distinguished and distinctive voice in devotional poetry died in Lahore after a protracted illness on Friday, January 29, 2011. Warsi shaib was clearly an giant amongst naat-go and hamd-go Urdu poets. Although many would remember him for the rendition styles, he was first and foremost a poet who had dedicated his poetry to devotional subjects. One is saddened to hear the news of his death.

I grew up hearing and watching him read out his naat and hamd on PTV in his very soothing, distinct, and soulful voice and style. But it was not just his recitation style, it was the simplicity and elegance of his poetic constructs that tugged at your heart strings. As I listen to his voice again today that emotional combination still has the same effect. Probably nowhere more than one of his most famous hamd, Wohi Khuda Hai; this, of course, was made even more famous when Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan rendered it, but I still find it even more powerful in the poet’s own rendition:



Many of his devotional renditions are now etched in the memories of PTV viewers – especially including Ya Rehmatallil Aalameen, Maira Payambar Azeem tar hai, and, of course, Wohi Khuda Hai – one certainly hopes that his words, his voice and his renditions will live after him.

Although we remember Muzaffar Warsi primarily and justly for his hamd and naat, his ghazals – although less numerous – also had a deep and soulful quality to them. One that I particularly remember from an old PTV Mushaira and have been very fond of (especially the second verse below), went like this:

Inn aankhouN kay ander bhi darkaar haiN aankhaiN
Chehray kay peechay bhi chehra hou sakta hai

Kandhay KaRheeal kay houN, aur gaThri burhiya ki
boojh utha kar bhi jee halka hou sakta hai

Iss duniya meiN na-mumkin kuch nahiN Muzaffar
doodh bhi kaala, shehd bhi KaRwa ho sakta hai

On a little digging, I was able to find the video of him reciting this ghazal (at a later Mushaira). It is worth a listen:

In searching for this, I also found this other ghazal from Muzaffar Warsi, which is more political than most of his work:

DaawouN ki tarazoo meiN tou azmat nahiN tulti
feetay say tou kirdaar ko naapa nahiN jaata

Farmaan say paerouN pay kabhi phall nahiN lagtay
talwar say mausam koee badla nahiN jaata

Chor aapnay gharouN meiN tou nahiN naqb lagatay
aapni hi qamaee ko tou loota nahiN jaata

As we remember the poetry of Muzaffar Warsi today, let me end with two separate more verses from Warsi sahib that people may not have heard before (at least I had not);

(1) Sarr iss leeaye uncha hai, kay qadd uss ka baRRa hai
Qadd iss leeaye uncha hai, kay laashouN pay khaRRa hai

(2) Teray haathouN meiN hai talwar, meray paas qalam
Bol, sarr zulm ka tou kaatey ga, ya meiN kaatouN

15 comments posted

Comment Pages: [2] 1 » Show All

  1. January 29th, 2012 3:05 pm

    بیادِ مظفر وارثی مرحوم جن کی آج پہلی برسی ہے
    احمد علی برقی اعظمی

    مرجعِ اربابِ دانش تھے مظفر وارثی
    جن کی عملی زندگی تھی مظہرِ حُبِ نبی

    نعت گوئی میں تھے وہ حسانِ ثانی برملا
    ان کی غزلیں اور نظمیں تھیں سرودِ سرمدی

    گلشنِ اردو میں ان کی ذات تھی مثلِ بہار
    آگئی فصلِ خزاں اور چھا گئی پژ مردگی

    شخصیت تھی ان کی اپنے آپ میں اک انجمن
    اردو دنیا میں تھے وہ بزمِ ادب کی روشنی

    مٹ نہیں سکتے کبھی ان کے نقوشِ جاوداں
    روح کو ملتی تھی ان کی فکر سے آسودگی

    ان کا اسلوبِ بیاں تھا امتزاجِ روحِ عصر
    تھی نمایاں ان کے فکرو فن سے عصری آگہی

    شہرۂ آفاق تھا ان کا شعورِ فکر و فن
    مرجعِ اہلِ نطر تھی ان کی برقی شاعری

  2. December 2nd, 2011 3:46 pm

    Itni khamoshi bhi achi nahi ha logo,,,,,
    Sannatoun say bhi hangama ho sakta ha,,,,,
    What a poet he was….

  3. February 7th, 2011 10:56 pm

    Only one person can change my whole life, my nights my Mornings, My way , My Style.

    He is only one and that was Muzaffar wasi, that make me totally changed.

    when ever i call him, in my mind , Belief me or not, my Eyes cy Blood

  4. February 2nd, 2011 10:11 pm

    More comments from the ATP Facebook Page:

    - “‘koi to he jo nizam e hasti chala raha he’…..even Nusrat Fateh Ali rendered Muzaffer Warsi’s poetry in poet’s own unique style….”
    - “MAY ALLAH REST HIM IN PEACE……………….ITS A GREAT LOSS FOR THE COUNTRY AND ISLAM …….”
    - “allah rehmat karey……….insha allah”
    - “wo he khuda hai….!”
    - “May God give him a place in heaven Ameen”

  5. Humaira says:
    February 2nd, 2011 10:05 pm

    So sorry to hear this. Allah maghfarat farmaye. I do not often listen to these but he always made me stop and listen and think.

  6. IMTIAZ says:
    January 30th, 2011 1:31 am

    Innalillah
    He wrote some very powerful naats and hamds. Sorry to hear of this loss.

  7. Kamal says:
    January 30th, 2011 1:00 am

    So very sorry to hear this news. He was such a powerful influence on so many of us. There was a humility and humbleness in their expression of faith which is missing from the jang o jadal of so many today.

    I rember him and this younger Qari Waheed Zafar and whenever they were on TV I would just sit and listen to their soulful voice.

    May he rest in peace.

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