Lagta naheen hai dil mera, by Vijay Kumar

लगता नहीं है जी मेरा उजड़े दयार में

If I am obligated to pick one score with minimum music but the maximum impact, I will never be able to decide which one to put my finger on of the two: lagata nahi hai jee mera ujade dayar mein or na kisi ki aankh ka noor hoon…! Tripathy’s lilt in either is only facilitative yet terrific. He understood that the words are far too deep and poignant not to be jarred and distracted by the sound of instruments. He also knew that Rafi’s rendition of these ghazals would lend them a timelessness – an impact almost transcendental!

I am not sure if Zafar is better known for the two ghazals or for being the last even if the weakest of the Mughals. Interestingly, Javed Akhtar, the famous lyricist, had earlier asserted that na kisi ki aankh ka noor hoon … was not by Zafar but his grandfather Muztar Khairabadi. I have never considered Javed as belonging to the higher echelon of poets. But with this averment, he has gone down even below my ordinary esteem. Zafar patronized such eminences as Mirza Ghalib, Dagh, Mumin, and Zauq. He needed to be poet himself to handle them. He was a devout sufi. The poems of love, to reach Him, must be accruing to his ken and pen easily. He was a practising sufi too. He needed the means to reach Him. He, therefore, had in his harem four begums formally married to him and numerous concubines, who in totality bore, perhaps incidentally, his 22 sons and 32 daughters! Ironically, he yet died lamenting that he was unloved …. Na kisi ki aankh ka noor hoon, na kisi ke dil ka karar hoon…..! No doubt such were his circumstances then, languishing in jail far away from the land of his loved ones……. कितना है बदनसीब “ज़फ़र″ दफ़्न के लिए /दो गज़ ज़मीन भी न मिली कू-ए-यार में…

I do not know but if one has to go by the intent and import of the two poems, na kisi ki aankh ka nor hoon… appears to have been written later. Lagata nahi hai dil mera is a poem of despair and dejection with an undercurrent of bitterness, of complaint… कह दो इन हसरतों से कहीं और जा बसें / इतनी जगह कहाँ है दिल-ए-दाग़दार में. Na kisi ki aankh noor….decries self, Zafar admits his worthlessness….sans any expectation – a soul prepared to depart as Zafar seems to have written his own epitaph…. Mein bekasi ka mazaar hoon! What a sum up of the life and times of an emperor who lived the longest but was the weakest – he was a nominal ruler of a territory that did not extend beyond Delhi!

But if I have to pick a part expression from the two poems, as relevant to and subserving any time, which is still part of the popular lingo, it has to be:

उम्र-ए-दराज़ माँगके लाए थे चार दिन
दो आरज़ू में कट गए, दो इन्तज़ार में

It took about a century in time before Rajinder Krishan came up with an equally effective verse: unko ye shikayat hain ki hum…..

Presently, lagata nahi dil mera…


Originally written on 18 March 2018.

Exceptional thinker and writer Vijay Kumar was with The Ministry of Tourism, New Delhi, where he resides. He enjoys his children, dotes on his grandchildren, and loves Hindi film songs with meaningful lyrics.


One thought on “Lagta naheen hai dil mera, by Vijay Kumar

  1. Remarkable song and the way you have curated it, in just a few hundred words, wonderful! Loved especially the point about the ownership of the song…how appropriately claimed too, after everyone has gone.

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