Home > Saraiki Sooba > Seraiki province as a bargaining chip – By Aziz-ud-din Ahmad

Seraiki province as a bargaining chip – By Aziz-ud-din Ahmad

While the issue of a separate Seraiki province has so far been raised mainly by the intellectuals and out-of-mainstream politicians, it is now on the agenda of the political elite also.

The Seraikis have a language of their own. They also have a geographical habitat which is different from much of the rest of Punjab. Its Rohi, Thal, Damaan have been celebrated with deep love by poets from Khwaja Fareed to Dilshad Kulanchvi and evoke feelings not shared by their Punjabi neighbours. Its Pilu, once abundant but now a rarity in Punjab, also provides popular imagery to Seraiki poetry. While jhumar is a popular folk dance in Seraiki area, Punjabis are enthused by altogether different steps and movements of bhangra and ludhi. Unlike Punjabis who comfortably settled in Canada and parts of the US as early as in late 19th century and joined the British Army to fight wars in far off lands around the same period, the Seraikis have led till a few decades back a somewhat sedentary life. The tendency is described in the proverb: Safar-e-Multani ta ba Eidgah i.e, the Multani hardly travels beyond the Eidgah, constructed by a governor of the later Moghul era in 18th century on what in those days comprised the boundary of the city.

Multan has retained a separate identity for hundreds of years before and after the Muslim rule. Under the Moghuls too it had its own governor. It was first amalgamated into Punjab under Ranjit Singh who was out to unify and extend Punjab through diplomacy, cunning and conquest in early 19th century. While Ranjit occupied Multan, Bahawalpur remained an independent state till it was made a part of One Unit and at the latter’s demise in 1970 merged with Punjab on orders from General Yahya Khan amid widespread protests. A number of protestors demanding a separate status for Bahwalpur were awarded lashes by a military court.

Numerous reasons have attracted people to the idea of a separate Seraiki province, the foremost being a sense of domination by Punjab. Having better access to bureaucracy and army, Punjabis acquired vast tracts of land in Cholistan during and after the Zia era. This was the latest but by no means the only instance of domination. Many army officers awarded land in Cholistan also hail from Punjab. This has sent a wave of resentment among thousands of local landless and small cultivators.

Source: The Nation, July 2, 2009

Categories: Saraiki Sooba
  1. BSPP
    June 27, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    With the reluctant introduction of 18th amendment delegating pledged powers to the national entities of this federation, instead of executing it in its actual letter and spirit and devolving power to the local/regional levels; establishment has openly triggered its efforts to undermine the genuine 4 nations (Sindhis,Pashtoons,Balochs and Punjabis) question by creating pseudo nations within them one after another. Which are about to produce fruit with another division of the most vulnerable entity of this federation…i-e Punjab, the foundation for what was surreptitiously laid in 60s and all the preparations in terms of getting de facto recognition of “Saraiki” as a separate language, culture, region through a well planned fabricated/distorted history through state controlled public & private media, have been done without any constitutional, legal, masses and expertise approval; however research on geography, history, language, culture and ground realities of Punjab clearly shows completely opposite picture…

    For instance Majhi, Doabi, Puadhi, Malwai, Rathi, Bhatiani, Dogri and Kangri are all the major eastern Punjabi dialects and sub classification of western Punjabi or Lahnda into three main categories: (1) Southern Lahndi consists of Saraiki and Jatki (2) North East Lahandi consists of Dhann, Hindko and Tinuaali etc. (3) North West Lahandi includes Potohari, Punchi, Awankari and Pahari by George Grierson, an English civil servant and numerous other indigenous and foreign researchers with the exception of a few ones; clearly shows that western Punjabi or Lahanda has got many dialects as well having Multani/Saraiki it’s integral part…

    So is in the case of geography having five rivers evidencing the name PUN-AB, history in which all the region including Multan has always been the integral part of the land of five rivers except a few times in the history, when it was ruled as one of the administrative-units/provinces of Sindh due to the tug of war among different rulers…above all the conversation of purely illiterate persons (belonging to any part of Punjab) with each other without any third person’s help is an irrefutable evidence of one language having diverse dialects…

    In spite of all those realities, a well organized un-constitutional, illegal and seditious campaign through print and electronic media without any hindrance has been in progress at the behest of establishment and supported by all right, left and so-called nationalist political & non-political proxy parties of establishment eventually to pave the way and to gain malicious political motives at the cost of the fate of Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashtoon & Baloch masses/nations…

    The said 4 genuine nations of this federation shall have to face the following immediate repercussions after the proposed division of Punjab…

    (1). With the increase of seats in senate for each divided unit of Punjab having the same faces in order to defeat the other provinces’ majority in both houses of Parliament, building of Kalabagh Dam to irrigate the agricultural land of southern & central Punjabi/Saraiki politicians and upper Punjabi/Potohari army against the wishes (expressed through the assemblies) of Balochs, Sindhis & Pashtoons…

    (2). The more firm control of “PUNJABI ESTABLISHMENT” (comprises of southern Punjabi/Saraiki politicians mostly have been plundering & ruling on TAKHT-E-LAHORE & TAKHT-E-ISLAMABAD, central Punjabi business class and upper Punjabi/Potohari army) over all the downtrodden masses in all divided units of Punjab and on Sindhis, Pashtoons and Balochs in terms of literally “BIG BROTHER”…

    (3). Above all the illegitimate and mischievous division of other entities/provinces one after another as well on the similar precedent of Punjab with the final occupation of the whole coastal belt of Sindh and Balochistan from already occupied city/capital Karachi up to Gawadar, for which already a coastal motorway has been built to get easy access…

    The proposed echoing division of Punjab has been underestimated not only by ignorant Punjabis but also by all well aware Baloch, Pashtoon and Sindhi masses…The extreme resentment of Baloch, Pashtoon and Sindhi masses against Punjabi establishment is comprehend-able, yet is insane as besides increasing the suffering of Punjabi masses instead of “PUNJABI ESTABLISHMENT” their annoyance would rather trigger their own adversities…So they shall have to analyze in depth to see the inside story…On the other hand Punjabis and particularly thinkers, who assume Urdu, UPite Islam and Pakistan as holy symbols shall have to revamp their said notions…If the division of Pakistani federation having remaining 4 nations is a sin, how could another division of a historical entity “PUNJAB”, which is their motherland as well can be swallowed? If earlier one is termed as treason, why can’t the later one be called sedition? If anyone could be declared traitor for writing, speaking airing, publishing so far against an abstract Pakistani federation, how could one be so easily allowed to do the same against a historical entity like Punjab keeping in view print and electronic media having many TV channels cultivating masses thinking just to pave the way for accomplishing the set goals of establishment by projecting a concocted history of southern Punjab painting it a separate entity…! In the light of above analysis, won’t the proposed division of Punjab would cause the division of other 3 national units/entities/provinces (KPK, Sindh & Balochistan) one after another as well with the eternal enslaver of all said 4 nations in terms of another worst form of one unit and eventual dismemberment of this federation once and for all having extreme anarchy, chaos, restlessness and bloodshed in this federation and region…? However the 5th columnists among all the said 4 indigenous nations in nexus with racist infiltrated Urdu speaking aliens of Ganga Jamana would reign… Please give your logical & objective deliberations with historical, linguistic, geographical and political proofs…!

  2. BSPP
    June 27, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    All the CORRUPT, DISHONEST & OPPORTUNIST Politicians having perverted nature in all political parties from southern, central & upper/northern Punjab in all parties could even sell their real mothers to/before the wimps of 9-0 for the sake of their unlimited lust not to speak of mother land…

    But the said all Punjabi Politicians and pro-establishment Politician from other native nations (particularly the ones in PONAM) of this should remember……. however deceitfully said sort of all 5th columnists & their supporters in nexus with powerful racist Urdu speaking infiltrators of Ganga Jamna fabricate and distort the irrefutable history of Punjab in an attempt to divide it by coining & labeling Punjab’s assets (in terms of its rivers, land, language, culture and saints from Khawaja Ghulam Fareed to Shah Hussain Lahori up to Sultan Bahoo, Baba Fareed, Mian Mohammad Buksh and many others) with the so-called Saraiki, Potohari blah blah sort of stamps at the behest of above wolves and hyenas in order to linger on their plundering and solidify/firm their de facto rule over the poor masses of all 4 genuine Sindhi, Pathan, Baloch and Punjabi nations; They can’t… Because history is cruel and those genuine nations, who have been divided on the whim of exploiters, plunderers & colonialists by traitors, got united again having followed the very laws of nature however all the conspirators had to lick the dust…so shall you all have to… The notorious Punjabi establishment, which comprises of greedy politicians of southern Punjab (from Gurmani & BASTARD JAVED HASHMI to present Gallani), powerful Army of upper/northern Punjab (who have been mostly/consistently ruling on TAKHT-E-LAHORE & TAKHT-E-ISLAMABAD simultaneously) and some of their counterpart politicians/technocrats/civil bureaucrats from central Punjab like Atizaz Hasan, Chuhadaries, Abida Hussain, proved to have been born on the other side of the blanket; now can’t vindicate themselves from their blunders and sins by desperately and direly supporting another division of Punjab in order to gain multiple benefits out of it again…

    Those, who cunningly tried to divert and subdue the menace of the division of every national unit/province one by one after the proposed division of Punjab having termed it merely a fear…For the sake of an argument lets assume it a fear; then let me know after the division of Punjab if no other national unit is divided; then having gained equal seats for each divided unit out of Punjab in senate, who could oppose the resolution in favor of Kalabagh at center besides deterring numerous other hidden ulterior agendas????????? So wouldn’t the division of any one existing units/entities/provinces (particularly Punjab) of this federation be a situation like out of frying pan into the fire for all the Sindhi, Baloch, Pathan & Punjabi masses/nations whether anyone of them is divided or all or divided…???That is why division of anyone of the 4 existing entities/provinces would be catastrophic for all as only and only above described dishonest, corrupt and greedy politicians of Punjab and racist Urdu speaking aliens could only capitalize from such situation; yes flunkies of theirs couldn’t get even peanuts out of it except miseries… The division of anyone of the existing units/entities/provinces would be the beginning of the end of this abstract Pakistani federation…! So if someone has to make this federation stronger, peaceful and prosperous; the linguistic/cultural, economical and political rights of all 4 existing nations/provinces/entities shall have to delegate to them in true letter and spirit instead of imposing any alien (Urdu) language, UPite misinterpreted version of Islam & fake (Pakistani) nationalism and those who claim themselves to be the biggest loyal to this federation and Islam, shall have to strive to seek those rights from the above described mafia rather to undermine the national struggles by concocting pseudo-nations within the genuine nations… Punjabis own all saints of the land of 5 rivers (rather labeling & dividing them) and intend to make our children read all of them (from Khawaja Ghulam Fareed, Shah Hussain Lahori, Sultan Bahoo, Baba Fareed, Waris Shah, and Mian Mohammad Buksh including others). As they are the actual binding forces among the masses of 5 rivers, which intact their coming generations with their roots and above all make them learn and realize that how to pay respect to their neighboring Shah Lateef, Rehman Baba and Gul Khan Naseer’s children…!

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