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Koshur Music

An Introduction to Spoken Kashmiri



Brij Premi’s Book Pirated

By Prof. Manazir Ashique Harganvi

Jagdish Chander Vidhavan's book I happened to have in 1991 but an occasion to read it was delayed as the book had got mixed up somewhere in my papers. Prior to it, I had come across many comments of admiration on the author's book 'Manto Nama'.

In "Tarteeb" on Page 03, I could at once call up that this material was there in another book. After going through the book restlessness gripped me and I was forced to get many books (lying in disarray) on Manto as under my guidance a student had been awarded Ph.D on "Stories of Manto". Similarities between Mantonama and Dr Premi's book 'life and achievements of Manto' were seen. Dr Brij Premi had already  been awarded Ph.D in 1977 by Kashmir University. Major portions of Jagdish Chander Vidhavan's book are from Dr. Premi's book on Manto. Even the text at many places has been pirated word to word, and somewhere through certain clever permutations and combinations, Sh. Jagdish Chander Vidhavan has tried to make it look like the material as his own, though he has not succeeded by crediting the stolen contents into his book, besides making it look like his personal achievement by copying in a clever manner comments of Krishan Chander and Abu Syeed Qureshi. The rest of the author's contents have been taken from 'Manto Number' from Lahore.

"Dr. Brij Premi, a Srinagar born person got this nourishment in literary activity from Prem Nath Pardesi. Basically Brij Premi was a short story writer, who later shifted to new domain to earn Ph.D from Kashmir University where he was posted as Lecturer in Urdu Deptt. Dr. Brij Premi passed away on 20 April 1990 and by then seven or eight books of Premi were published. Some excerpts and comments:

"The book Manto-Hayat Aur Karnamey was highly liked by me".

Ali Sardar Jafri (Bombay)

"Really, you have tried very hard in collecting and updating events and circumstances and presented very admirably through a wonderful style.”

Prof. Masood Hussain Khan (Aligarh)

Dr. Premi is one among those who work very silently to bring forth genuine documents. He is one among those Indians, who has devoted himself singularly on Manto. This book on Manto's personality and act is indeed of the standard of a basic reference book.

Prof. Gopi Chand Narang (Delhi University)

In my opinion, at least in India, a book like this on Manto has not been published. He has really prepared an encyclopedia on Manto. I feel, rather confidently speaking, that no serious student working on Manto can ignore this book.

Prof. Jagan Nath Azad (Jammu University)

A book of this nature, a composite book on Manto has not been written so far in Urdu. We will see more work done on Manto, but this book shall have the status of a basic reference book.

Prof. Qamar Rais

Brij Premi after departing from and saying good bye to old concepts has brought before us some important facts in Manto's stormy life. With analysis of historical and fundamental criticism, Brij Premi has presented a bias free account of presentation of facts.

Prof. Hamidi Kashmir

On such a beautiful book like this, I can afford to forget at least my half a dozen novels.

Kashmiri Lal Zakir

Jagdish Chander Vidhawan says:-

Research confirms that Mantoos in the last 18th century or in beginnings of 19th century migrated to Punjab (Page-01).

The text of Brij Premi's book seems to have been pirated with a slight change here and there, transported into Mantonama. Excerpts Khoja Jalal-ud-Din who settled in Amritsar was Manto's grandfather whose youngest son Moulvi Gulam Hassan was married twice and had in all twelve children - four sons and eight daughters and Manto was second wife's son. Manto had three step-brothers who were senior to Manto (Manto Nama Page 23). Brij Premi writes Manto was a Kashmiri Pandit like Jawahar Lal Nehru and Iqbal (Page 24) In the series 'Architects of literature' in Page 18 Krishan Chander's reference is Manto like Jawahar Lal and Iqbal was in fact Kashmiri Pandit. Citing Krishan Chander's sentence Brij Prem in his book on Page 18 has made this comment. Now Vidawan says-

In Urdu language Manto is referred to as Mintoo or Manto-(Mantonama 26-27. Following extract in Manto Nama is exactly like one in Brij Premi's Book of life and Achivements of Saadat Hassan Manto.

Manto's house was in Kocha (street) Vakilan in Amritsar and where one could see the house of Hafiz Ullah and outside it there was a well and then a little onwards one saw the house of Abdul Hamed DSP. There was a 'haveli' to the north of which there was Manto's house whose door was on the South and on the right side, there was the way leading to Manto's house. This room was known as Daral Mahar (Manto Nama-Page 31)

This is the text of Abu Syeed Qureshi and Brij Premi uses it in his book on page 35. Near the door.,.... was a writing table and on the right side a small almirah and books that could not be kept in the almirah were on the table along the wall. Manto received his education in Middle and High School and had....(Manto Nama Page 32) Page 32 the full page text. In childhood, once Manto...(Page 23) Refer to Premi’s book Page 34) Manto took up editorship of weekly “Musavir” and accepted a job there in the office of this weekly and lived, nearby on the rent of Rs 9.00 a month-the room was in a very bad condition-he was just a Matriculate and that too with a third grade in the examination--

(Mantonama Page 107)

Refer to Page 107....the text is exactly similar to Page 59...

Excerpts - Manto was asked his opinion about marriage and Manto had assented---one Malik Hassan was the uncle of Manto's would be wife and was a print assistant in the police department---Manto could not really make up with the meagre salary and was used to a beer bottle--the girl's uncle was in parliament, besides being a social worker!!! Safia's father was killed some where in a scuffle or some dispute--and Safia was brought up by her uncle----unfortunately the financial position of Imperial film company was having a bad patch and the conditions grew worse day by day. Even the allowance in place of pay could not be given and the company's proprietor requested for some assistance---All this has been pirated from Brij Premi's book" Life and Achievements of Sadat Hassan Manto".

Excerpts----In all about four to five hundred rupees were spent----Sometimes Safia would appear---and he writes about Safia to his friend Ahmad Nadim Qasmi as---It is not yet a what one calls a perfect marriage---I have been only engaged. My wife is connected to some Kashmiri dynasty. Her father is dead and my father too is dead, she puts glasses as I put...she was born on 11th May the day I too was. Her mother wears glasses as my mother uses---The first letter of her name is also common like so many things to us---Manto shifted to a room on rupees thirty as the rent and pay was rupees forty from "Musavir", just to manage life on Rs 5 a month. Manto kept up the room in the wake of Safia coming to live with him---with him---producer Nana Bai Desai gave him a thousand rupees and eight hundred for his (Desials) Apni Nagar" (Manto Nama Page 110-111) all this has been pirated from Page No: 61 of Premi's book" Life and Achievements of Sadat Hassan Manto.

Excerpts - Manto was employed in All India Radio---and began receiving letters from Nazir Ludhanavi, the proprietor of 'Musavir' to come back to Bombay---Manto gave up the job---Shoukat Hussan was some what stubborn and (Manto Nama Page 141) This is a complete piracy frmo Page No: 76 and 77 of Premi's book Life and Achievements of Sadat Hassan Manto”.

Excerpts - Filmstan took up making a propaganda film. Short story writer of Filmstan, Gyan Mukerjee had written a film story but it was rejected and the work was asigned to Manto...who worked quitely, with dedication and changed the fundamental texture of the story. The script was accepted and it was put on the screen.

(Manto Nama Page 165)

The above text, quite word by word" completely resembles the contents on Page 82 from Manto-Life and achievements by Dr Brij Premi--I reached Page 165 from Manto Nama and now I didn't dare go ahead readers can well guess how Jagdish Chander Vidavan has prepared his book

Quarterly Tarkash Kolkata

Shumara No: 04

July 2003

Translated by Sh. M.N. Kak

*(The author is Professor of Urdu at Bhagalpur University).

Source: Kashmir Sentinel



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