Habib Jalib’s dastoor: Main nahin manta

With my recent love for Habib Jalib sahab here’s one of his finest poems. The fact that it pretty much implies for every era is commendable.  The poem was originally written In 1962, when Field Marshal Ayub Khan formulated the new constitution and was playing the flute of his administrative capabilities, Jalib called it faulty. He called it a tool of exploitation and wrote his most memorable poem Dastoor which shattered the manipulated intentions of the government.


Deep jis ka sirf mehellaat hi main jalay,
Chand logon ki khushyon ko lay ker chalay,
Wo jo saye main har maslihat kay palay;
Aisay dastoor ko,
Subh e bay noor ko,
Main naheen maanta,
Main naheen jaanta.

The light which shines only in palaces
Burns up the joy of the people in the shadows
Derives its strength from others’ weakness
That kind of system,
like dawn without light
I refuse to acknowledge,
I refuse to accept

Main bhee kha’if naheen takhta e daar say,
Main bhee Mansoor hoon, keh do aghyaar say,
Kyun daraatay ho zindaan ki divar say,
Zulm ki baat ko,
Jehel ki raat ko,
Main naheen maanta,
Main naheen jaanta.

I am not afraid of execution,
Tell the world that I am the martyr
How can you frighten me with prison walls?
This overhanging doom,
this night of ignorance,
I refuse to acknowledge,
I refuse to accept

Phool shaakhon pay khilnay lagay tum kaho,
Jaam rindon ko milnay lagay tum kaho,
Chak seenon kay silnay lagay tum kaho,
Iss khulay jhoot ko,
Zehan ki loot ko,
Main naheen maanta,
Main naheen jaanta.

“Flowers are budding on branches”, that’s what you say,
“Every cup overflows”, that’s what you say,
“Wounds are healing themselves”, that’s what you say,
These bare-faces lies,
this insult to the intelligence,
I refuse to acknowledge,
I refuse to accept

Tum nay loota hai sadyon hamara sakoon,
Ab na hum per chalay ga tumhara fasoon,
Chara gar main tumhain kiss tara say kahoon?
Tum naheen charaagar,
Koi maanay magar,
Main naheen maanta,
Main naheen jaanta.

For centuries you have all stolen our peace of mind
But your power over us is coming to an end
Why do you pretend you can cure pain?
Even if some claim that you’ve healed them,
I refuse to acknowledge,
I refuse to accept.  


And now time for some punjabi touch to it 😀

My apologies to all the Mushy fans out there, but I had to put it up without bias and editing.Please dont judge me for it but I tend to like Shareef Sahab’s voice too 😛

PS : Not that I know editing anyway 🙂


43 thoughts on “Habib Jalib’s dastoor: Main nahin manta

  1. Sana, Be Blessed for keeping the flame ignited.
    Allah willing, the day is not far away when we will all sing this as One Voice.

  2. Yesterday at the book launching ceremony of Mujahid Barelvi (former patron of Ahbaab-e-Jalib) in Hyderabad I heard him saying that those who struggled against Ayub got themselves “encashed” during Bhutto era, those who resisted Bhutto got encashed in Zia rule, those who struggled against Zia rcvd favors in BB’s term but Jalib was/is the only “Cheque” who never got encashed in any era. True symbol of popular resistance!

  3. raft-o-guzisht aankh se ojhal hain kiun phir aaj….
    kis bhool mai paray hain ye nadan hukumran…..
    amrikioon ka taba-e-farman tha jo shakhs……
    saddam se sabaq lien musalman hukumran…..
    pakistan muslim league (functional)

  4. Hi Sana,

    Would like to suggest a correction in the last paragraph it is “Charagar dardmandon ke bantay ho kyun?”

    Not “Charagar Main tumhe kese kahoon”

    According to this recitation by Habib Jalib:

  5. wow thats great work done by habib jalib many years ago. It means we are still standing on the spot, pointed out by the typical revolutionary poet.Its very shameful for our politicians.

  6. A very good poem from Habib Jalib, but its Goodness become double when Great Khadim of Punjab Mr.Shahbaz Sharif recite it..
    Musharraf o Zard-aari k dor ko mai nhi manta mai nhi jaanta..

  7. i am dedicating hereunder my poetry to great
    revolutionary poet Habib Jalib.

  8. Its realy amazing poem,thanks for publishing it on the internet.when “charaagh charaagh”will burn each and other light will be spread over our society +9203006087151

  9. i love your blog, and its nice, attractive and full of amazing words.

    the poem you published is really a symbol of encouragement for young people, whatever circumstances we face, we need to know the difference between right and wrong, justice and injustice…

  10. I was looking for his poetry on net as he is one the revolutionary poets who Allah sent to us and here I am, got both, his poetry and also rendering my tribute to his superb lines.
    Keep the flag flying……..

  11. Whats awfully sad is that poems in urdu are so open worded they lend themselves to anything you decide to render them too. I’m sure Jalib sahab must be turning in his grave seeing the likes of the Shariffs using his poetry!

    on a lighter note: the man REALLY CAN’T SING.

    1. @ Sohail: Welcome to my blog 😀 and I believe its not awful but indeed beautiful how Jalib’s words are still applicable today 🙂 however some tend to abuse it but then thats ok

  12. i love him(JALiB), He is my hero, and my inspiration, his motivational poems towards revolt against the capitalists is SPOT ON,

  13. in every era and regime our government turns out to be worse than ever but today its acting like tomorrow:P..however it is more like yesterday’s sycophants morphed into tomorrow’s shoe seekers..

    great work Jalib!

    thanks for sharing such a great poem 🙂

  14. Dr.farukh welcome to my blog 🙂 and yes it is indeed a very sad thing, I recently heard about this artists NGO working in helping artists that have served the country in times of need. A very confused whether that actually was about Pakistan, I think I ll look into it.

  15. Thanks for sharing these beautiful verses. Here, I would like to mention that few days back I was watching a package by Geo giving the glimpses of Jalib Sahab’s family and my heart was aching to see that families of such personalities are suffering due to poverty. I wonder why we are a nation whose learned are always poor!!!!

  16. Zios u r most welcome 🙂 Jalib Sahab is truly amazing 🙂
    Harris I loved his voice too 🙂 but I dont have an audio to it, it was a sponatneous act done in a recent speech :). One of these momment make me forgets how much I hate youtube otherwise 🙂

  17. Sana…Very Nice!…Jalib has always been one of my favorites and in fact this poem was the first one that attracted me to him long time ago. It is a beautiful poem! Thankyou 🙂

  18. Thank u 🙂 a glad u did .. n lol at the little bits of urdu u used :). The poem surely is amazing its written in such high spirits that one cant help but relate to it 🙂

  19. Thanks for the translation! Vaise bhi bino iske mujhe aadhe se zyada samajh mein nahin aate. Anyway he seems to have expressed himself very strongly. Giving voice to those that do not have one is a very heavy burden to put on one’s shoulders. He must have been a brave man to attempt it. I enjoyed the poem. A nice way to end the day.

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