Even in a hundred years

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Kazi Nazrul Islam’s ‘Rebel’ poem is a wonderful time-honored creation of the twentieth century. The poem was published simultaneously in ‘Moslem Bharat’ and ‘Bijli’. Besides, the Magh issue was published in ‘Prabasi’ and some other newspapers. The poet wrote this poem at the age of only 22 years and 6 months. It would be wonderful if a young Muslim poet could write such a wonderful animated poem as ‘Rebel’. With the publication of the poem ‘Rebel’, Nazrul’s fame aroused indomitable passion and insanity in Bengali society, especially among the youth.

Regarding the first publication, the then poet Khan Muhammad Moinuddin wrote, ‘I remember, what emotion and insanity awoke in our young minds that day! The whole of Bangladesh seemed to be agitated with joy and excitement. On the way, in the ghat, in the restaurant, in the tea meeting, only this poem was being discussed. The young society started talking in the language of rebels. One of the lines of the poem is addressed to the youth when they meet each other in a chat or on the street. For example, ‘I am Genghis, I do not leave you without someone, Kurnish’ — maybe someone else is saying in reply,’ I am the ever-rebellious — the hero, I am the only ever-advanced head left in the world.

Just as the poem ‘Rebel’ inspired the youth of Bengal, so did the language in the voices of the revolutionaries and awaken the social and political consciousness in the minds of the people.

Poet Buddhadev Bose wrote about the poem ‘Rebel’, ‘It is true that Nazrul was the first original poet in Bengali after Rabindranath. He showed that a path other than the path of Rabindranath is possible in Bengali poetry.

Poet Premendra Mitra writes in the context of the poem ‘Rebel’, ‘Although some of the earlier works have attracted the attention of the aficionados, it is in the poem’ Rebel ‘that Nazrul seems to be able to earn the shocking recognition of all the literary world. The value of the ‘rebel’ may not be the same for everyone, but it seems that no one will deny that the then epoch-maker was first reflected in this poem.

Samil Muktak composed ‘Vidrohi’ in dimensional verse. Nazrul is the originator of this rhythm in Bengali language. Such a rhythm was essential for the expression of restlessness and zeal in the poem ‘Rebel’. Habildar poet Nazrul has been permanently awarded the title of ‘Rebel Poet’ in the history of Bengali literature. This creation has made Nazrul one of the most original poets of Bengal. ‘Rebel’ is a long poem of 6 stanzas, 149 lines. The poem ‘Rebel’ was written in late December 1921 in a room at 3/4 C, Taltola Lane, Calcutta. There my grandfather Kazi Nazrul Islam and Kakababu comrade Muzaffar Ahmad lived together in one room.

Grandpa first wrote the poem ‘Rebel’ one night with a pencil. As a reason, Comrade Muzaffar Ahmed wrote, ‘Neither Nazrul nor I had a fountain pen at that time. He will not be able to keep his hands and mind in rhythm while dipping the pen again and again in prayer. With this in mind, he first wrote the poem in pencil. After writing at night, Dadu recited the poem in the morning to his friend Muzaffar Ahmed.

Nazrul did not receive unceasing praise and congratulations for his poem ‘Rebel’. Fame was accompanied by equal criticism and ridicule. Many people are jealous and call this poem fake and arrogant. One of them is the poet Mohitlal Majumder. He first wrote letters to Moslem India praising Nazrul’s poems

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