Progressive poet, Sahib Shah remembered as epitome of humanism

Sher Alam Shinwari

PESHAWAR: Poets from different parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa paid glowing tribute to late progressive poet, Sahib Shah Sabir at a grand Pashto recitation session held here on the other day at the Agriculture University Peshawar and remembered him as strong voice for the poor masses and advocate of universal humanism, peace and brotherhood.

Arranged under the joint auspices of Pakhtun Students Federation (PSF), Agriculture University and Pakhto Adab Zalanda Stori, around 30 noted poets participated who presented poetic tribute to late Sahib Shah Sabir, a staunch devotee of Bacha Khan and former student leader of PSF and author of several books.

The organizers distributed Bacha Khan Talent Awards among the participants in different activities over the week. Senior poet, Shams Buneri graced the event as the chief guest. Peace, humanism, pluralism, unity and mutual respects were versified by the poets and stressed the need for national integration.

Shams Buneri in his brief talk asked the students to promote the cause of nonviolence through positive activities on campus and prove to the world that Pakhtuns were a peace loving nation and make getting quality education as the first target.

“Bacha Khan wanted an enlightened Pashtun society free of aggression, exploitation, injustice, poverty and ignorance and where mutual respect without any bias of gender, race and religion should reign supreme. Sahib Shah has advocated the same in his writings,” he added.

The event was part of centenary celebrations of Anjuman-i-Islahul Afaghina of Bacha Khan spanned over a week where different functions were held including a football match, book fair, painting exhibition, seminar and study circles where a large number of students, party workers and civil society activists participated.

Khadim Hussain, provincial culture secretary of Awami National Party (ANP) while speaking at the concluding event said that Sahib Shah Sabir was an embodiment of true spirit of universal humanism and wanted a pluralistic society where peace and beauty ruled over hearts of people and hatred never crept in.

He said that Mr Shah was an enlightened student leader and believed in Bacha Khan’s philosophy of nonviolence. “He suffered imprisonments on several occasions but never turned violent, as a writer he introduced a new style of progressive expression in literary criticism, research, poetry, prose and fiction,” Mr Hussain remarked.

Fazal Momand, President of district Peshawar Malgari Leekwalan, pointed out that university campuses should serve as the store houses of scholarship and knowledge and should therefore encourage such events which he said would motivate a spirit of critical thinking.

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