Majha House hosts session with Pak author on his latest book : The Tribune India

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Majha House hosts session with Pak author on his latest book

Haroon Khalid dwells on the idea of love through Waris Shah’s lens

Majha House hosts session with Pak author on his latest book

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, May 18

Majha House organised an exclusive online meeting with renowned author and Pakistan-based journalist Haroon Khalid, who is out with his new book –From Waris to Heer. In conversation with US-based author Sarbpreet Singh (his latest book being Sufi’s Nightingale), and poet Arvinder Chamak, Haroon said the book is as much about perennial lovers Heer and Ranjha as it is about the immortal charm of Waris Shah’s verses.

Preeti Gill, founder of Majha House, while introducing both the writers said that through their books people get a glimpse of the history of Punjab, which is very important to know. More so, the youth of today have become distant from this history, she said. Talking about the book, From Waris to Heer, Preeti said because it is the story of Heer, it talks about love, which gives satisfaction after reading because in today’s time where hatred and war are everywhere and it is very difficult to talk about love.

Haroon, too, asserted, “It is necessary to know that before Waris Shah, the symbol of love was usually a husband and wife in the gloves of love. But with characters of Ranjha and Heer, he gave us lovers, beloveds, who were not married yet immortalized in love,” he said.

He further shared that he was fond of Punjab’s history, both the charda and lehnda Punjab and he read the translation of Waris Shah’s Heer during Covid-19 pandemic. “I fell in love with that story and the idea of love through Waris Shah’s lens.”

Regarding the structure of the book, he said that there are two stories going simultaneously developing in this book, one contemporary and the other historical. In this, he had to face the challenge of how to retell such a famous story. He coped with this by experimenting with its language and structure. Although, he did cautioned that at the end of the book it is mentioned that this is Waris’ Heer and not Damodar’s because there are many versions of Heer, which have differences. “Waris Shah’s Heer is material and worldly and does not talk about the next world or afterlife,” he said.

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