These Are the Girls of Jamia

Yukti Saumya translates “Yeh Hain Jamia Ki Ladkiyan,” a poem by Amir Aziz

Exposing the Shahs of the world, 

With their gestures, revolutions unfurl,

These are the girls of Jamia.

And patriarchy’s garb gets ripped to shreds,

People clear out the path ahead,

When they resolve to take on the streets, these girls of Jamia.

When these girls of Jamia come out onto the streets,

They are not Hindu, not Muslim,

not Sikh, not Christian,

not Parsi, not Jain.

They are the girls of Jamia.

They are not ‘this’ or ‘that,’

Not ‘good’ nor ‘bad,’

Not ‘like this-one or that-one,’

Not whoever, whatever.

They are the girls of Jamia.

Not someone’s mother or daughter,

Or wife or sister,

They are the girls of Jamia.

Not someone’s dignity or honour,

Someone’s home or someone’s anchor,

They are the girls of Jamia.

And when the police picks up lathis

And the people pick up stones,

Murderous screams rise,

A person suffocates.

When breaths keep getting slower,

All eyes keep getting lowered,

When all the men in the world start to bow down in the face of cruelty,

When even slaves tire of fighting the masters repeatedly,

When broken fragments of humanity start falling on the streets,

With clenched fists they pick up slogans from the streets, these girls of Jamia.

And when slogans from the street are picked up by these girls of Jamia,

Sparks of fire tied to gas stoves turn into a flashlight.

The sound of the slaves’ shackles turns into freedom chimes,

These girls become a source of worry for the dictator.

And they live their life, smoke cigarettes for pleasure,

They too enjoy their leisure, these girls of Jamia.

They wear their opinions on their sleeves,

They wear hijabs, too, if they please,

They go into fine detail, these girls of Jamia.

On the pages of history that speak of revolution,

All those who appear are the girls of Jamia

And in the hearts of all the women in the world,

They, too, are the girls of Jamia.

Note: The translated passage is for academic purposes only and has no commercial application.

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