Crowds Applaud As PM Recites Kashmiri Poem
18 April 2003
The Hindustan Times
Srinagar: Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Friday received thunderous applause from 30,000-strong crowd at a rally in Srinagar when he recited a couplet of famous Kashmiri poet Mehjoor. 'Wala ho baghawano, nav baharuk shaan paida kar, pholan gul gath karan bulbul, timay saman paida kar (let us build an atmosphere where flowers bloom, birds chirp and play and it will be a paradise),' Vajpayee said during his 20-minute speech at the Sher-e-Kashmir stadium. The couplet was written by Mehjoor for former Chief Minister Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah after the Dogra rule had ended in the state and he had taken over reins of the administration. As Vajpayee completed the couplet in Kashmiri and began its translation, thunderous applause greeted him with people raising slogans 'Atal Bihari Vajpayee zindabad.' 'Din badle, mausam badle, bharen phir aayengi (days have changed, weather has changed and now spring will come soon),' said Vajpayee when he sought co-operation of youths in re-building the state.