The Well-known Seven Heroic Women of Sindh

Seven Queens or Seven Heroic Women is a name usually referred to the seven female characters that appear in the poetry of iconic Sindhi poet Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai in his book Shah Jo Risalo. They are: Marui, Moomal, Sasui, Noori, Sohni, Lilan and Sorath. These seven heroic women characters which the poet selected from history to convey his poetic message, have sustained to be cultural icons in the history of Sindh province for their valor, passion, loyalty, commitment, devotion and character strength.

The character of Marui portrays love for the land, its locals, her commitment with her traditions, her stance before a tyrant king, Umar. The character of Moomal conveys an image of a passionate soul, brimming with love for her beloved, Rano and suffers at the altar of separation and rejection but doesn’t surrender. Sasui is a courageous lady, who takes a debilitating tour of mountainous tracks to search her beloved, Punhoon. Noori is a fisher-lady who enchants the king Tamachi and turns out to be one of the most loving characters in the Sindhi literature. Sohni is a daring lady, who, in case to meet her lover Mehar (ميهار) overlooks the dangerous waves of the Indus River and keeps meeting her beloved on the far bank of the river and one night falls victim to the river waves and dies. Lilan loses her king (husband) Chanesar for just a costly necklace and undergoes travails of an intolerable separation to reacquire her status and character; while Sorath is a beautiful soul, full of passion and care about her beloved.

Shah Abdul Latif had organized his poetry book, Ganj, popularly known as Shah Jo Risalo, in a form that recommended he intended to convey his message to the globe through his verse. Among several of intentions behind his poetry, one of his huge inclinations was towards mentioning the marginalized populace of the country, particularly women. Accordingly, he selected these seven heroic women or Seven Queens of the Sindhi folktales as protagonists in his stories. These beautiful romantic tales are Umar MarviMomal RanoSohni MeharLilan ChanesarNoori Jam TamachiSassui Punhun and Sorath Rai Diyach.

These seven heroic women have a considerable impact on all the literature written in the state of Pakistan and specifically Sindhi literature in India, Moomal and Suhni being the notable ones. From the texts of these folktales, and particularly Latif’s poetry, the character of these very women would seem to dominate the role of males as their counterparts. In Umar-Marvi, if only Latif’s poetry is analyzed, less space is devoted to Umar’s role, most of the story cites to difficulties Marvi undergoes as an outcome of her abduction by the King Umar in the south-eastern part of Sindh province. In Moomal-Rano, the role of Moomal overwhelms everything else involving Rano’s role. Sasui-Punhoon is primarily the story of Sasui’s struggle to find her beloved husband who left her, apparently, for good. Just a little glimpse is dedicated to Punhoon in this story. Noori-Jam Tamachi is significantly the romantic folktale from Noori’s context. Tamachi is merely like a source to assist substantiates Noori’s perspective. Suhni-Mehar is again the story of Suhni’s worries and trouble she takes to meet Mehar. Mehar isn’t more than a figment of reference. In Lilan-Chanesar, again the main character is Lilan. Although, in Sorath-Rai Diyach, Sorath, unlike the roles in the aforementioned folktales, dominates the story in the spirit not the material.

Hence, the tale of each of these Seven Heroic Women, little or more, one or the other way, commonly relates to the cultural milieu and substance of the evolutionary procedure of the individuals living in the regions of historical India and current Pakistan.





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