Getting the news of the demise of our former prime minister, Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee has left entire country deeply sad and in a state of shock.
When I got this news it just did not register in my head. How can it be? Why did it have to be? Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji is no more….
It felt as if the world around me has come to a halt and maybe it actually did. There was silence all around me. People ached with pain which soon started to show on their faces after all India lost its one of the finest gems.
While on my way to the office today, the roads were empty, the national flag flown at half mast and newspapers full of articles written by editors and other influential people who want to bid him farewell with their words.
“Kyon na main kshan-kshan ko jioon?
Kan-kan mein bikhare saundarya ko pioon?”
All this takes me back to the time when I was in school as Atal Ji was the prime minister then. I remember my father listening so fondly of his speeches. He would make us sit with him and listen to this man in the simplest of clothes, soft curls parted on a side with calmness on his face and fire in his words. And so I started watching his speeches more regularly which always left me in awe.
“Swayam ko doosaron ki drushti se main dekh paata hoon,
Na main chup hoon na gaataa hoon”
Listening to the radio one day I heard a song “school chalein hum” that changed my (a 14 years old) whole outlook towards going to school. The words pumped and encouraged me to do all that was sung in the song. The lyrics were simple and yet so heartfelt. Written by the man himself, Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, I felt as if he understood exactly what it feels like to be a kid and what exactly must be said to get that adrenaline rush in all of us and motivate the children all over India to go to school.
“Kal kal karte karte,
Aaj haath se nikale saare,
Bhoot bhavishyat ki chinta mein,
Vartamaan ki baazi hare”
Another popular poem was written by him that was converted into a ghazal was “kya khoya kya paaya” sung by another legend, Jagjit Singh. The video brought the best of the world together for this project – SRK, Jagjit Singh, Amitabh Bachchan, Yash Chopra and of course, Atal Ji.
This combination of a poet and a politician is so rare. He was a wordsmith who wrote his mind out during his parliament sessions and heart out for the real things in life.
“Daanv per sab kuch lagaa hai,
Ruk nahi sakte,
Toot sakte hain magar,
Hum jhuk nahi sakte.”
He would be remembered by all of us for his warmth, his spellbinding oration, and his gentle calmness that made him India’s favourite. A man who made an impact so deep that his loss is irreparable!