Tuesday, 24 June 2014

My first published writing-Punjabi Translation of Bharat Ke Krantikari

It was perhaps on 23rd March 1969, when I attended Bhagat Singh martyrdom day memorial meeting in Public Library Bathinda. The meeting was organised by CPI and conducted by District secretary Joginder Singh Bhasin. Editor of well known Punjabi literary monthly journal Preetlari, Navtej Singh was the key speaker. Probably I also spoke with some emotion, which impressed them. I was trying my hand at translation in those days by transllating in Punjabi from Manmathnath Gupt's Hindi book-Bharat Ke Krantikari, which cost in those days just one rupees, now its price is 100/rupees. Manmathnath Gupt himself was famous revolutionary convicted in Kakori case in 1927 for life imprisonment. I used to buy Hind Pocket Books of nine rupees by paying eight rupees as Book Club member of Hind Pocket Books Delhi. I had become a member of Public Library Rampura Phul, my home town in 1964 and started my reading from Premchand's Godan novel in May 1964. Since then I was avid reader of Hindi books. Since I was impressed by this book, so I wished to translate it in Punjabi for readers of my mother tongue. 
Preetlari was started in 1933 by eminent Punjabi prose writer Gurbux Singh Preetlari, who still was chief editor and his son Navtej, himself a good short story writer was editor and CPI activist. He invited me to send the translation to Preetlari and when I sent first piece, to my pleasant surprise it was published in September 1969 issue of the same year. It gave me immense pleasure and encouragement for further writings. I translated all the 16 or 18 sketches of Indian revolutionaries from this book and these were published within next two years in different Punjabi journals like Aarsee, Nawan Sahit , Jagriti and all of these were serialized in  Desh Bhagat Yaadgar Hall Jalandhar journal, edited by Baba Gurmukh Singh Lalton in those days. Unfortunately all the issues of Desh Bhagat Yaadan were lost by me and I could not recover it even from Jalandhar, Desh Bhagat Hall also lost these, due to perhaps police terror in those days in the name of crushing Naxalites. Now I am left with only five of these sketches, published during 1969-71 in various journals, which I shall share here. This very first one is being posted today. I will digitize all my publications in journals in due time.