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HindustanTimes Sat,01 Nov 2014

Cross-border website writes script of amity

Prabhjit Singh, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, March 06, 2013
First Published: 18:41 IST(6/3/2013) | Last Updated: 10:30 IST(7/3/2013)

Three journalists beating their Indo-Pak borders have something in common to boast about. They have launched a website www.suhisaver.org in Punjabi distinctly in both ‘gurmukhi’ and ‘shahmukhi’ (Urdu) scripts.

 

Inviting 500-1000 hits a day, the website carries perspective articles, as in any magazine, on politics, socio-economic issues, literature and culture.

Vikram Singh from Sangrur and Shiv Inder from Burjlitta village in Ludhiana district and Lahore-based storywriter and freelance journalist Asif Raza are the pillars of the said website that incorporated the ‘shahmukhi’ script in September 2012.

Interviews of renowned historian Habib Tanveer, Gandhian activist Himanshu Kumar, eminent poet Surjit Patar and that of Lahore-based famous storywriter Afzal Tauseef were some of the perspective pieces read in both the scripts for which the website got the applause from the visitor-readers.

“Transliteration is becoming a huge task for us and that is one of the challenges to sustain the regularity on daily basis in times to come,” said Shiv Inder.

It was Shiv Inder who firstly got in touch with Asif Raza in Lahore through the facebook and shared his idea for a Punjabi literary website in both the scripts.

“I knew Asif as a story writer for his contribution in Punjabi literary magazines, so, it became all the easy for me to make out that he would probably agree for this project,” Shiv Inder said.

His colleague Vikram Singh knows Urdu as well and, thus, he becomes a helping hand for Asif Raza in Lahore in translating the articles into ‘shahmukhi’.

Vikram visited Pakistan (Islamabad) as a member of the scouting team when he was in school in 2004 and it was then that the Urdu language appealed him.

He got his diploma in Urdu language from the Jamia Milia Islamia University’s regional centre in Malerkotla.

Revenue through advertisements, he said, was obviously the challenge still to rely on the website for bread and butter, he said.

Besides India and Pakistan, the readers include the visitors mainly from the US, Canada, Australia, Europe.

“This website can also be seen as a channel to bridge the gap between the people of both the countries on key issues,” Vikram said.

Besides www.suhisaver.org, two more such Punjabi literary websites in both ‘gurmukhi’ and shahmukhi scripts are www.vichar.com that is run by Manzoor Aizaz from the US and the UK-based www.apna.org.

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