Monday, July 19, 2010

Rashid Minhas: Book Launch Friday 6pm (intro here)


Educational Resource Development Centre (ERDC) and PAF KIET cordially invite you to the book launch of Rashid Minhas (Urdu)- the first full-length biography of Pilot Officer Rashid Minhas Shaheed, N.H. - by Khurram Ali Shafique and published by Al-Fattah Academy, Pakistan


6:00 pm - Friday, July 23, 2010

At PAF Kiet (City Campus), 28-D, Block 6, P.E.C.H. Society, Shahrah-i-Faisal, Karachi

Kindly confirm ERDC for participation
at(021)36723454, 36051229
or info@erdconline. org

Select quotes, paraphrases, other introductory early portions which
Khurram Ali Shafique Sahib offered at The Republic of Rumi Blog Website/blog...

"...The exact circumstances remain a mystery but it can be said reliably that Rashid was taxiing for his third solo flight in T-33 aircraft when his flight instructor Matiurrahman got into the rear cockpit. Mati was from East Pakistan and had been grounded as a precaution in those tension-ridden days. Soon after the takeoff, Rashid sent message to the control tower, “1-6-6 hijacked.” Apparently, the instructor was diverting the plane towards India. Rashid was able to repeat the same line a few more times before fading out from the radar.

Rashid Minhas's actual voice here

'His aircraft was later found crashed 32 miles from the Indian border...It was determined through the examination of the wreckage that in order to prevent the hijack, “Rashid Minhas tried to regain control of his aircraft, but finding this to be impossible in the face of the superior skill and experience of his instructor, forced the aircraft to crash.” Nine days after the incident, he was awarded the highest military honor."

Shafique Sahib told his blog-readers last year how he began the biography years ago:
"There was no footage of him from life, nor any voice recording (except that “1-6-6 hijacked”). Yet, his charisma outshines celebrities. I also fell captive to it in 1985. I was a teenager then. I got intrigued by a story in the English weekly MAG, (which)... mentioned that Rashid was fond of playing gramophone records of Western music at loud volume whenever he came home on vacation...

'I (was) amazed to see that Rashid (when I eventually read his choice of Iqbal's poetry) had chosen precisely the lines which suited the end of his story – the end which he could not have foreseen. The gist was that we are like a short-lived spark but it is not our lot to end up in smoke. We can pierce the heart of this universe and become immortal.

'...Destiny? Yes, destiny was the most oft-repeated theme in the few quotes printed in the magazine... I’m not referring (just)to his life...I am talking about mine.
...I found and read everything which I could find about him but I wasn’t satiated: the intrigue was increased. The face of the sophisticated Rashid, his mild looks and gentle gaze kept haunting me...

'Soon, I found myself visiting the house where Rashid had lived. I gained unrestrained access to all his private papers, his letters, diaries, and the entire collection of his books...'I wanted to...try to get into his mindset...

'The family was still living in the house where Rashid had spent many of his years when they were in Karachi. It was built in the early 1950’s and as I began to frequent it – sometimes every day for an entire week – it began to feel like traveling back in time. Sometimes (his brother) Rahat would play the same music for me that used to fill the house when Rashid was home: Jim Reeves, Kishore Kumar, Ahmad Rushdi. Then it would feel, really, as if Rashid was in the other room and we were just waiting for him..."

The following is condensed from a long letter he wrote to his younger brother Rahat and Anjum (Ratti and Jimmy in the letter) when he was eighteen from P.A.F. Academy
Risalpur 29/10/69

Dear Ratti Jimmy: I’ve been thinking for a long time about this letter...Life is fast but because of the routine, happy! Settled in a way that is. Studies are there mainly of all sorts of things about aircraft. The fuel systems, communications, navigation, aerodynamics, engines..We also do a bit of procedures – what you do when you get lost without radio and such like things...

Then there’s gliding – for sport. Its fun though you hardly ever go up above 1000! I’ve done a take off and tried my hand at landing too but the thing just doesn’t go straight! (If there’s even a slight breeze it carried the thing with it!) So that’s all I’m doing here – next time inshallah I’ll be learning to fly T-6G’s...Now let me know what you are doing? Studies the usual bore but cheer up! They’ll soon be, over, honestly I’m telling you – you won’t know it and THE day will be there when you are free...

At this stage maybe I should pore out my lecture to you as an elder brother – at least I’m supposed to, it’s only that I’ve no lecture for you but just a piece of advice more as a friend than as an elder brother. I don’t ask you to do anything for me, for yourself, for anybody, for that matter, for I can’t ask you – It’s your life your wish your will your mind your world...Believe me, when I say that I have the fullest confidence in you...

Nothing in this world is meaningless – if we just stop and think about it. I’m sure you know that already and I’m sure you never let things pass...everything, every person, belief, action has a reason isn’t it? But then there are so many things we never think about – we never bother because we think we are too busy, don’t you think so? Have you ever thought of why you go to school? ...You must be knowing already that it is just because man wants to know the truth, the truth about himself, about the world, about everything...

YOU MUST FIND OUT THE TRUTH YOURSELF. Satisfy your self. The books just give you the thing how it happens. People can just advise you, HOW? & WHY? You must answer yourself think it out. It’s just like geometry, your reasoning, use it! Try to find for yourself what happens around you and why? Wake up! (That’s what the drill instructor says!) Whatever appeals to you, think over it and come to your own conclusions about it...So many delicious secrets to be known by you...

Then you must also ask questions about yourself to yourself. What will happen? What am I to do? What is “good” what is “bad”? And then you’ll find so many strange things in this world – discover them. You’ll find more oddities than you can imagine. Standing on the earth you are traveling at 900 nautical miles an hour (even more rather much more than that!! Why?)

...you (are) also in this world...(for) some purpose, some reason for being here – and now it is up to you to accomplish it. It is for you to decide where you fit in the giant machinery of our world. Soon, very soon, people will look up to you...DO NOT LET THEM DOWN ...

Khuda Hafiz
Rashid

See the test page of first page (URDU) of biography here

For more, GO here or here and continue with 'newer' or 'older' posts...

Khurram Ali Shafique Sahib (as final introductory transition on one of these early blog posts) says - as conclusion to his search to understand Rashid's youthful grasp of DESTINY - "I found the answers. I now realize that in all these twenty-three years I have hardly shared them with anyone. I will now..."

2 comments:

Connie L. Nash said...

http://mypageonweb.blogspot.com/2010/05/rashid-minhas-biography.html

connie nash said...

Although I guess it will be awhile before I'll be able to read the Urdu & no English version for awhile. I was up 1/2 of a night or longer immersing myself in the wisdom and young life of Rashid Minhas via Khurram Ali Shafique's able and piercing mind/heart's mind...what a life, what wisdom, what inspiration!