Monday 16 June 2014

Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan in Supreme Court

On the evening of 20th October, 2008 a grand Mushaira-cum-Kavi Sammelan in a function called 'Eid Diwali Milan' was held on the lawns of the Indian Supreme Court, which was inaugurated by the then Chief Justice of India, Hon'ble Mr. Justice K.G. Balkrishnan. Several Hon'ble Judges of the Supreme Court and Delhi High Court and a large number of lawyers and members of the Registry and others attended it, some with their families.

This was a historical event because no such Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan had ever been held in the Indian Supreme Court premises in the past. Even the Pakistan Supreme Court had never held a Mushaira on its premises.

The idea of holding a Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan in the Supreme Court premises arose in my mind after I became a Judge of the Supreme Court in 2006. In the Allahabad High Court, where I was a Judge from 1991 to 2004, the High Court Bar Association used to hold a Holi-Eid Milan every year in the High Court premises, in which a Mushaira-cum-Kavi Sammelan was held. I thought that a similar function should also be held in the Supreme Court. Coincidentally, Eid and Diwali were occurring within a few weeks of each other that year. So I invited the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association, Mr. Parekh, the Secretary, Mr. Kaushik, and other office bearers of the Bar Association, to my chamber and explained to them my idea. They readily agreed.

However, when this came to the knowledge of the senior Supreme Court Judges most of them strongly objected. They were of the view that the Supreme Court premises was no place to hold such a function. However I stuck to my guns, and was able to persuade the Chief Justice of India to give his consent to holding such a function. After all, we were not holding the function in the Court rooms or during Court hours.

The Diwali-Eid Milan was held on the lawns of the Supreme Court on 20.10. 2008, starting from 6 p.m. Mr. Syed Naushad Ali, who is himself an Urdu poet in his own right, conducted it. Some of the topmost Urdu shayars in India like Waseem Barelvi, Munawwar Rana, Malikzada Manzoor, Iqbal Firdausi, Ana Dehlvi, Naseem Nikhat, etc participated, apart from prominent Hindi poets.
Before the Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan a tea party was held in which, among other items, sevain, which is usually eaten on Eid, was served.

The poets were seated on a dias, while the audience were seated below on chairs. There was a massive crowd in that function, including Supreme Court and Delhi High Court Judges, members of the bar, members of the Registry, some with their families, and others. No such event had ever happened earlier in the Supreme Court premises.

At the beginning, Hon'ble the Chief Justice of India distributed cash awards and a shawl to each of the poets. Thereafter the Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan started. It went on till late into the night.
The function was a grand success and was appreciated by all. Such functions promote the composite culture of India.

The next year, in 2009, also a similar function was held in the Supreme Court. A similar Mushaira-cum-Kavi Sammelan was held at my instance in the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court in August 2011. The Avadh Bar Association was celebrating its 110th Anniversary that year, and had invited, inter alia, the Supreme Judges to the function. I suggested to the office bearers of the Avadh Bar Association, who had come to Delhi to invite me, that a Mushaira-cum-Kavi Sammelan should also be held in the function. They readily agreed. Three Supreme Court Judges, Justice Sathasivam, Justice Chauhan, and myself, apart from High Court Judges, members of the bar, and others attended the function, which was a grand success. Again, top poets of Urdu and Hindi participated and read their kalaam. The audience particularly appreciated Munawwar Rana's poem Muhajirnama, and in fact many wept on hearing it, as it poignantly depicts the plight of Muhajirs who left India during Partition in 1947, but later wanted to return, which was no longer possible. 

One of the foremost Urdu poets in India, Waseem Barelvi, came specially to participate at my request, cancelling his other commitments. Naseem Nikhat's nazm about the plight of oppressed women in India struck a chord in the hearts of the audience.

All such functions serve to promote national unity and the composite culture of India. As is said in the well known Hindi poem :

" Hind desh ke niwasi, sabhi jan ek hain
Rang, roop, bhesh, bhasha, chahe anek hain "


  1. The Gujarat Model

  2. Nice article sir, I love to read this types of articles. Thanks a lot to share with us......Ind Govt Jobs, Latest Recruitment, Latest Employment News.

  3. respected sir,
    plz post pictures of the function (if any)