Sadaket Ali Malik
Wali Mohmad Aseer Kishtwari is a renowned name from Kashmir, Urdu literature, and Jammu and Kashmir history.
An emblematic figure was born in Kh. Ghulam Qadir Batt Berwari at Berwar Kishtwar village on August 2, 1954.
I was brought up in local schools like Islamia Faridia School, Kishtwar and ML Upper Secondary School in Kishtwar. Government graduate. Degree College, Bhaderwah in 1974. He did his MA in Urdu at Jammu University, then graduated from KAS in 1977. He also taught at Islamia Faridia High School, Kishtwar.
Later, he was appointed head of the Doda district treasury and shared the responsibility as the accounting manager of the Doda district fund office.
In April 1999, he was appointed Deputy Director of Accounts and Treasury Jammu. He had held an important position as general manager of accounts.
During his educational career, he actively participated in cultural programs and other competitions, seminars and debates. A student of Urdu, he studied literature and poetry in Urdu. He took an active part as a university student and his caliber was galvanized by the writers, poets, artists and other business leaders of the time. He became associated with literary and cultural organizations in Jammu and Kashmir and his skills developed in these organizations. Besides poetry, Aseer was drawn to prose writing, research, history, and literary criticism. The various literary organizations in the region have paved the way for him to prepare and compile several works such as the compilation of the Kashmiri literature of his illustrious father Changi Reh (The flame of the lamp).
Aseer Kishtwari remained actively associated with Faridiya Bazm-e-Adab, Doda, the only literary organization named after Hazrat Shah Farid-ud-Din Baghdadi. Around 1986, Aseer participated in many of its activities and became a member of this literary forum which was established with the aim of giving impetus to literature and language, poetry and research. This organization has launched a series of poetic symposia and publications at local, state and national levels. In 1986, 1987, 1988 and 1989, Poetry Symposia were held on National Integration across India in the remote Doda District, attended by eminent poets from the state and country. The organization’s programs were managed by him along with other members of the Bazm.
Aseer Kashtwari is a man of integrity and a well-noted bailiff in the field of literature. In literature, he has achieved a prominent place among the country’s authors and writers. His historical work on local history and cultural heritage like Tasveer Zila Doda in Urdu was first published in 1996, this book consists of 622 pages. As the name suggests, “Tasveer-e-Zila Doda” is the exclusive political, socio-cultural and developmental story of the former Doda district, also giving a living geographic context. The second edition of the same was published in 1997. The book meets the needs of various academics, researchers and other stakeholders.
His book “Focus on Jammu and Kashmir” has received great attention from thrilling posterity. The book was voted best English book of the year 2007 by the J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages. Four editions of this book have been published since 2002. It gives the most recent, comprehensive and documented political, social and cultural history of J&K State, including areas under occupation of Pakistan and China. The fourth and final edition contains 1768 pages, which covers various events up to June 2011.
Aseer Kashtwari has several books to his credit and serves as a research guide for researchers and other stakeholders. His book âTareekh-e-Auliya-e-Jammu wa Kashmirâ was chosen as the best book in Urdu of 2015 and received the J&K Academy of Art, Culture & Languages ââState Prize. In the book, he showcased over 400 Awliyas with their shrines located in different parts of the state including Jammu, Kashmir, Ladakh and Across the Line of Control (LoC). The 848-page book, published in 2013, is an authentic document on Sufism in J&K State and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
His other book on cashmere “Jamis Manz Kashir Zaban-O-Adab (Tawareekh Te Tanqeed) received the Sahitya Akadmi award for the year 2020.
His other works include Zilla Doda ki Adabi Shinakhat (Literary Identity of Doda District) was published in 1993, it contains articles on the history, culture and literature of Chenab Valley. This book contains 495 pages in which light has been shed on local poets and their literary contributions. Other books include Tareekh-i-Ishat-i-Islam, Farsh-e-Gul, Jamme-Subhik Kaeshir Kalamkar, Yaad-e-Nadeem, Safr-e-Harmain, Zikr-O-Fiqr, Jamis-Te-Kashir Manz Kashir Zabban-O-Adab (History and Criticism), Nishat Kishtwari Monograph, Janbaaz Kishtwari Monograph, Nishat Kishtwar (Monograph).
In addition, he wrote numerous articles, reviewed different types of books, wrote prefaces in Cashmere, Urdu, and English. His books are cited by local, national and international historians, researchers and even recommended in learned circles.
A man of many tastes, Aseer Kashtwari heads numerous social and literary organizations such as the president of the Jammu and Kashmir Urdu Forum, the general secretary of the Rasa-Javadani Memorial Literary Society Jammu, the press and finance secretary, Koushur Markazi-Adabi forum Jammu, founding member of Forum culturel Challant Kishtwar and Faridia Bazam-e-Adab, Doda.
Asser Kishtwar received the Rashtriya Gaurav Award from the India International Friendship Society for his meritorious service. The award was presented to him by Dr Bishma Naraian Singh, former Minister and Governor of the Union. He received the Gandhi Peace Award, the Rasa Javedani Literary Award, the Vitasta Award, the Urdu Award and the Best Book Award from the J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages ââfor the year 2015.
J&K Urdu Forum Jammu Prize, MA Urdu Prize (Professional) Urdu Jammu University, Best Book Prize (English) 2006 by J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages. The 2010 Best Citizens of India Award from International Publishing House New Delhi and the 2011 J&K State Award for Excellence in Literature on Republic Day. Aseer has several articles and research papers to his credit and has been published widely in newspapers and magazines. It is a moment of pride that once again this year, Aseer’s work was rewarded by the jury of this prestigious Sahitya Academy Award 2021 for its indelible literary critic “Tawazun”. This will inspire aspiring writers to emulate.