Noted poet and writer Javed Akhtar has claimed that the famous ghazal “Na kisi ki ankh ka noor hoon” has been penned by his grandfather Muztar Khair Abadi and not by the last Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar, as it is popularly believed.
The ghazal, said to voice the inner distress and poignancy of Bahadur Shah Zafar while in exile in Burma, now Myanmar, means “I am the light of no one’s eyes, the throb of no one’s heart, I am that fistful of dust that can be of no use to anyone” and has acquired legendary status.
Akhtar, while releasing a five-volume collection of poems of Muztar Khair Abadi titled “Kharman” at AMU yesterday, claimed that this legendary ghazal was penned by his grandfather.
“Eminent literary critics such as Niaz Fatehpuri, Ale Ahmad Suroor and Gopi Chand Narang had for long argued that this verse was not found in Zafar’s complete works, published in 1887, and was definitely Muztar’s,” Akhtar said.
“In this poem, Muztar infact gave a poetic expression to what he guessed was the inner turmoil of Bahadur Shah Zafar when he was languishing in a garage attached to a bungalow of a junior British officer in Yangon, where he died,” he said.
Muztar, born in 1862, gave expression to the turmoil of Shah on the basis of the accounts of what was told to him as stories by his family members.