By Saleem Aazar
Though Shahid Ilyas Shami is known as a singer and a music composer but he has recently published a novel titled ‘Udhoora Wa’ada’ that has made people stunt for his creative talents to write fiction.
What a nice novel that captured the lives of poor and weak in our society. It present a complete struggle of a young man namely Shaami who finally goes to abroad to get rid of poverty. His father
Moa’azam Ali is the owner of a provision shop. His mother has been died many years ago. He has three sisters and he is keen to assist his father in his financial affairs but he did not agree to the thoughts of his father who wants to assist him by working at the provision store.
His father desires to see his son a successful and responsible person by joining his business but a well qualified Shaani could not be followed the footsteps of his father and instead tries to flay high and become rich for getting rid of poverty.
Moa’azam Ali is much worried for his three unmarried young daughters. Here Shaami shares of his feelings with his father and father finally got convinced to allow his son to leave abroad.
Finally, Shaani leaves for Cyprus and settles over there. In Cyprus he meets with a girl Umeeta for whom he had been dreaming in the past.
The mother of Umeeta permits them to be married. Once the mother of the girl had suffered in the past due to her failure of marriage with a man from Pakistan who ditched her and used to torture and victimize her. Yet after meeting with Shaan,i she got fully satisfied and allowed Shaani to marry with her daughter. She not only gives her consent but also transferred her assets to the name of her daughter and daughter transfers to the same to Shaani’s bank account. The same funds are eventually sent to the family of Shaani.
Shaani asks his father and sisters to buy a good house in Karachi as the newly married couple (Shaani and Umeeta) was about to land in Karachi.
Moreover, Shaani asks his father on phone to spend a reasonable amount on the expected marriage of his younger sister. The expected marriage of his sister was being arranged (with a very good friend of Shaani) in Karachi.
The family is very happy and excited as Shaani (along with Umeeta) is coming back. In Pakistan his eldest sister Hajiraz is being married to a friend of his confidence Imran. Imran has a great love and sympathy for the family and once he had assisted Shaani in going abroad and settling over. Now, the couple has left for Pakistan and their sympathetic friends Ameen, Malik, Qayum and others are too keen to hear a good new of their arrival in Pakistan, but they suddenly died due to the plane crash.
In a way the novel revolves around a ‘dream’ and a romance of dreaming about life which could be taken at any stage of life.
Shahid Ilays Shaami has not mentioned the full name of the central character as his life was due to take a drastic turn at the end of the novel and an incomplete name was a symbol of his life and also the symbol of the title of the story ‘Udhoora Wa’ada’ (a promise that could never be fulfilled).
The other characters are also living an incomplete life in a way. The knitting of the story hints at the reasoning of their living lives in this manner.
The description of the story is so impressive and despite of the usage of present tense on some pages, it does not look awkward due to the nice sense of Shahid Ilyas Shami who made it more logical and effective. This was for the first time that Shaid Ilyas Shami wrote an Urdu novel regardless of the fact that he never wrote a singl short story earlier. This is indeed interesting and appreciable that he wrote such a good novel presenting deep observation and living styles of people of the biggest city (Karachi) and miseries of people as well. Besides, he has also painted the life of people living in abroad and others issues with using good phrases and mind-blowing diction which is indeed commendable.