Shakuntala Nailwal Ishtwal: Super sensitive about surroundings
By: Bhishma Kukreti
Born in Nailwal family Kapholswyun, Pauri Garhwal in 1960, Shakuntala Ishtwal is teacher by profession and is very famous for reading poems in local kavisammelan or other local forums or events. She has published tens of Garhwali poems in local papers of Pauri Garhwali . Akashvani Nazeebabad also relayed her many verses. We may also find her five Garhwali poems in Gwai a Garhwali poetry collection from Dhaundiyalsyun (Syunsee -Baijaron) region.
Her DaLyun ki DagDdya poem is symbolic and have philosophical meaning too. My mother used to describe ‘bhemata’ (the creator of this earth) that bhemata has beautiful but no body can see her form (bhemata ek bhaut sundar baand cha pan ween tain kain ni dykh). Same way Shakuntala Ishtwal describes the friend of trees as with beautiful, attractive form but ultimately, without form:
DaLyun ki dagaDya tu phoolon si swaNi
Ini pyari koo chhai tu kail nee jaNi
Aankhi teri neeli-neeli unni dant pati
Bat teri chhan mithi hilans
Ini pyari koo chhai tu kain ni jaNi
Shakuntala Ishtwal is not only teacher but is super sensitive about happening in our rural society and is a social activist too in her poetry. Her Raibar poem tells us about the misfortunes of gambling and alcoholic drinking habits among youths. She not only speak about the hard lucks, failures, beatings, trouncing from the disorders of betting, gambling and alcohol drinking but also find a purely indigenous way for teaching to the gamblers, alcohol drinkers and alcohol sellers. Women folks of Garhwal has to suffer the thrashings and defeat from gambling, drinking exist in the society. Therefore Shakuntala the social activist poet advices the females of Garhwal:
DarwaLyun, juwaryun par daam lagawa
Raibar bainyun ! Toom sooNilyawaa
Shakuntala Ishtwal is very insightful about horrific happenings in the villages of Garhwal. That is the reason that she also criticizes
critically to smokers and cigarette, beedi, pan-masala or jarda sellers in her poem dhumrapaan.
The poems like halchal and lapata of Shakuntala Nailwal Ishtwal are full of wit, drollness, sharp, irony and lampoon on the day to day’s happenings around Garhwali villages.
Uttrakhand ka in chhan halchal ji
Bhair-bhair chahal pahal bhitar gairal ji
Or we may see the painful happenings in the following poem :
PungaDi patLi bechik hamun
Banayi primary gaonki
Roj bajana ghanta baccha
Ar master jee ko lapata ji
We find her motherly quality about caring e for the society and future of the society in her each poem
From form and style point of view, Shakuntala Ishtwal does not use any newness or is far away from any experimenting. She uses doha and chaupaya for creating poems and I can say that she is conventional Garhwali poet in terms of form, style and construction of the verses.
Shakuntala does not believe in surprising the audience by form or words. We may judge easily about her ignorance about new happenings in the poetry world around the globe and Garhwali literature too.
Many supporter of ‘standardization in Garhwali’ will accuse her using local dialects of Raath ara (Dhoundiyalsyun, Syunsee-Baijraun and Kapolsyun). However, this author supports her for using the local dialects .
At the end we may say that Shakuntala Ishtwal write Garhwali poetries in conventional methods and is super responsive about happenings surrounding her.
@copyright: @ Bhishma Kukreti,7/3/2009/Mumbai/India