As I have time and again said, there is no poet I would like to read in Hindi, or for that matter most would like to read, after they have read or heard Mahakavi Bhushan. He is well and truly unparalleled, and I am yet to read or hear any poem on veer ras in any language which can be compared to what he has written about 300 years back.
While on one hand, he lauds Shivaji Maharaj as a just, fair, generous king, one cannot help but contain a smile when he takes a dig at Aurangzeb.
There is a story which goes that once Aurangzeb ordered Bhushan to write about his qualities. Bhushan agreed to do so, provided that he had Abhaydaan. When Aurangzeb accepted his request, Bhushan composed the following two chhandas:
किबले की थोर बाप बादशाह शाहजहाँ टाको कैद कियो मान मक्के आग लाई है
बड़ोभाई दाराको पकरी के मार डार्यो मेहरहो नहीं माँ को नहीं सगा भाई है
बंधू तो मुरादबक्ष बादी चुग करिबे को बीचले कुरान खुदा की कसम खाई है
भूषण सुकवि कहे सुनो नवरंगजेब एतो काम किन्हें तेऊ पादशाही पाई है |
This literally means
By imprisioning your father who is like the sacred water, you have committed an act which is as bad as burning the city of Mecca. By capturing and murduring your blood-brother Dara, you have shown that you do not have mercy in your heart what so ever. You gave false assurances to your other half brother Murad Baksh that you will support him for the throne by swearing to the Quran. I Kavi Bhushan am saying: Listen Navrangzeb, its because you have done these unholy deeds, you have obtained the throne.
On listening to this, the story goes, that Aurangzeb was furious. But before he could do anything, Bhushan went even further and said the following:
हात तसबी अलिये प्रतःउठे बंध की अपही कपटरूप कपटसु जपसे
आगरे मी जाओ दारा चौक में चुनाय लिनो छात्र ही छिनाई लीनो मरे बूढ़े बाप के
कीन्हो है सबेत घात में तो नाही कहो फेरी पीलपे तुराय चारो चुगुलके गपके
भूषण भनत शतचंडी मतिमंड वहा सौ सौ चूहे खायके बिलडी बैठी तपके !
Translated, this means:
Oh Aurangzeb, you think as yourself as a good man by reading the Quran every morning and by repeated taking of Gods name. But in truth you are the perfect embodiment of wickedness, and its the wickedness you pray to every morning. You killed your own brother openly in the square at Agra, and snatched your fathers throne. You slaughtered your family members and kin by stampeding them under elephants on the slightest hints from miscreants and your spies who wanted to eliminate them for personal gains. I, Bhushan am saying that you may show the world that you are wise and religious- but this is all a pretension. Your acts are comparable only with that of a cat which has dined upon a thousand mice, and is pretending to meditate.
The story goes that each word was piercing Aurangzeb like a double edged sword. He was furious, and ordered the decapitation of Bhushan. Fortunately, Bhushan escaped before such an act could take place. A marathi translation of the whole episode is available. This is translated by Baal Kolhatkar.
प्रातःकाळी स्मरूनी खुदाचे हाती घेसी जपमाला
तुझे रूप जे मूर्तिमंत जे जपजपासी कपटाला
जिवंत असुनी बाप आपुला मेला बुभाट केला
ऐशाकरणी हाती घेतिले सिंव्हासन भूपाला!
वडीलबंधू दारा वधुनी बंधुधर्म उद्धरिला
चुगलखोर दूतांच्या वचनी वंशनाश करवियला
तुझ्यापुढे हा भूषण कुठला कुण्या तरुचा पाला
हजार मूषक मारून बसले मार्जारच ध्यानाला
I simply could not resist putting this one up on the blog. I mean, I get a sense of satisfaction everytime someone takes a dig at Aurangzeb, indeed the most inhuman and inflexible person to ever rule India. Indeed he epitomized what we can call as "A 700 year old tradition of harassing and mistreating Hindus and showing utter disregard for their religion". As Bhushan has rightly said, our Dharma is alive today, because atrocious people like Aurangzeb got a staunch resistance from the likes of Shivaji Maharaj in Maharashtra, Chhatrasal Bundela in Bundelkhand and Lacchit Barphukan in Assam.. May these heroes be rekindled in us, as we strive for a better India.
(Anyone who wants to have a better understanding of Bhushan, refer any cassete/CD by Ninadrao Bedekar. His oratory is exceptional, and he really brings the whole Bhushan kavya to life)