Barren highlands with beautiful mountains is a common thought as the word Balochistan is uttered. In fact, what is less known to the world is the inspirational personalities with excellent achievements. Over the course of history, many esteemed figures are remembered who have guided the nation towards a different level. Many well-known personalities revolutionized the region through their academic or political roles, some through arts or excellent leadership, bagging trophies in sports, fighting for a cause or just with their unique ideas and remarkable actions. No amount of appreciation could ever suffice to their invaluable contributions for the progressive transition of the region. One name from these shining stars is Atta Shad.
The Baloch poet was born on November 1, 1939, in Singanisar, Turbat. The original name of Atta Shad was Muhammad Ishaq and Shad was his pen name.
He got his early education in Singanisar Middle School and completed matriculation from High School Panjgur in 1956. He did Fundamental of Arts and Bachelor of Arts from the Government College University.
Shad was a poet, critic, playwright, researcher and an intellectual. In beginning he wrote poetry in Urdu and later in the Balochi language. Shad is considered the architect of modern symbolic Balochi poetry. He was inspired by the tutelage of Faiz Ahmed Faiz but soon felt the need to evolve his own style of poetry. His marvellous style gave him a prominent place in the literary quarters. Atta Shad is known the prominent figure of modern Balochi literature and was highly influenced by western romantic poets as Coleridge, Persey Shelley and T.S Eliok.
His first poem “Shepaank” was published in “Ols” magazine, but Atta succeeded to achieve widespread attention after writing his poem “Sah Kandan” which represented the true senses of Baloch tradition and history.
Shad divided Balochi poetry into two parts. He wrote his own poetry in Balochi. He had completely dominated the other poets. He emerged as a great poet in Urdu and Balochi and could speak Persian and English as well.
Atta Shad has multiple contributions for Balochi literature which include Rochgir, Shap Sahar Andem, Singaab, Barfaag, Gichain shairi, Balochi Nama, Dreen, Urdu Balochi lughat, Balochi Urdu dictionary, Haft Zubani lughat, and Jawansal.
Atta’s main focus was on writing Ghazal and Nazm. He was a modernist and romantic poet. Atta got Presidential Pride of Performance Award in 1983 for his unique performance.
He left the Balochi literature orphan on February 13, 1997, at the age of 57. Atta will be remembered till Baloch, Balochi and Balochistan exist.
“On my motherland a bowl of water is worth eternal allegiance, let us quench our thirst and submit ourselves to the eternal bond.”