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Man of letters

chandigarh Updated: Oct 01, 2012 11:04 IST
SD Sharma
SD Sharma
Hindustan Times
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‘Literary creations, especially poetry, of any regional language must epitomise the living culture of its people, taking their real concerns, perceptions and problems in its ambit. These writings must also reflect the true feelings of the author and should not be influenced by any other considerations,” observes Amritsar-based acclaimed Punjabi poet Parminderjeet.

In Chandigarh on Saturday on the invitation of Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi for a Ru-Ba-Ru, he shared views on contemporary Punjabi literature. Credited with writing numerous articles, almost twenty books including translations and poems, Parminderjeet is hailed as one of the most quality
conscious literary critics of today’s times.

“My poetry is a depiction of my heartfelt emotions and of my tryst with the social environment. Sometimes, they come with contradictory attributes, but they are weaved in an appealing paradigm of words,” claims Parminderjeet about his works. Honoured with a highly reputed award by the Punjab state language department — Shiromani Punjabi Poet Award in 2005 — the poet’s works have also been commemorated by Punjabi literary organisations based in the US, UK, Italy and Japan.

He also participated in the World Punjabi Conference in 2008 as a delegate.

On Punjabi literature being churned out in the current times, Parminderjeet opines, “These days, Punjabi literature is being brought out in tons in all genres. But novel writing is rare and not up to the mark. And as compared with prose writing, poetry is better.” The writer of popular poetry books such as Mere Kujh Hasil (2007), Tan Takia (2010-11), Chaumukhia (2012) and of books that include Dhooni (a biography), says, “For me, poetry writing in musical meters is a sacred endeavour and an exacting discipline. But, I feel that most of the blank verse these days, lacks in both lyrical rhythm and content of merit.” Despite not being a graduate, Parminderjeet’s book, Meri Marfat (2000), was a part of MA-2 (Punjabi) syllabus for three years.

Asked about the sustained brilliance of his bi-monthly magazine Akhar, which he has been publishing since 1975 (with a break from 1978-89), and the poet says, “I never compromise on quality. If the subscriptions do not meet my set standards, I prefer to translate poems from Hindi and Urdu.”

On the contribution of the government or autonomous bodies of art and culture in Punjab, he laments, saying, “While I have been bestowed with a prestigious award, yet it is the Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi that invited me for a Ru-Ba-Ru. I have depended completely on my friends to bring uninterrupted editions of my magazine since the last four decades,” he signs off.