Saturday, August 24, 2013

Ashok Lav : A writer with the heart of a poet / Dr Makhan Lal Das

Dr Ashok Lav

Dr Makhan Lal Das at Dr Ashok Lav's residence


I met him through face book, a simple, honest looking man from Delhi.  My fondness towards poetry drew me closer to the poet in him. His poems are born out of subtle human emotions and feelings, often touching a raw nerve here and there.  It touched me too.  I started translating his poems to Assamese and the bond grew stronger. Finally I came face to face with him on a bright sunny morning at the Metro Station in Dwarka. There he was, waiting to receive me, my respected friend, Ashok Lav.
Ashok Lav is a multifaceted personality.  He is a well-known academician, poet, writer, critique, journalist and social worker.  He started his academic pursuits in the fields of science but his love towards literature finally took him to the arts stream.  He was born in a Mohyal Brahmin family . He spent his childhood at Kaithal (Haryana) and also studied at Bhagalpur and Monghyr (Bihar).He obtained  his graduation  and B. Ed. degrees from Delhi University and  post graduate degree from Himachal Pradesh University. He was conferred with Ph.D. and D. Lit. degrees for his outstanding contribution in the fields of Hindi literature . 
After completing his Masters in Hindi, he joined teaching profession and continued to do so with full devotion and dedication for nearly thirty years. Teaching was his profession but writing remained his passion.  He has tried his hands in almost all areas of Hindi Literature and has been successful in creating a niche for himself wherever he did. His first writing, a children one-act play was published in ‘Navrashtra’, a Hindi daily, published from Patna and his second in ‘Dainik Veer Arjun’, a daily published from Delhi. It was in the year 1964 when he was in the school. He has been writing since then and the flow of writings has never stopped. His published works have already touched the century mark which includes both educational and literary creations. As a successful academician he has written a large number of text-books for students of all standards.  He has worked on almost all modes of prose and has done exceedingly well in that.  His Short stories,  Laghukatha, novel, short stories, interviews, reviews, essays and articles, drama etc. have been of the highest quality and are very well received in the Hindi literary circles. In fact he played a historical role in establishing  Laghukatha as a distinct form of writing. He has initiated discussions on various forums like radio, television, literary circles etc on different aspects of Laghukatha.  Ashok Lav is considered as a senior and leading exponent of Hindi Laghukatha and ‘Salaam Dilli’, a collection of his  Laghukatha is considered to be a historic document on this.
Ashok Lav has seriously worked on the much neglected area of interviews too. ‘Hindi Ke Pratinidhi Sahityokaron Se Sakshatkaar’ is his greatest gift to Hindi literature in this line. While ceremonially releasing the book, Vice-President of India Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma called it a unique creation in this much neglected area of literature. These interviews were serially published in ‘Dainik Hindustan’, a Hindi daily of repute. His novel ‘Shikharon Se Age’ has been a subject of research. This novel depicts the modern Indian society vividly covering almost all the aspects.  Four students have received M. Phil. degrees for their research works based on this novel.  Some other well acclaimed works of Ashok Lav included Pattharon Se Bandhe Pankh ( Collection of short stories), Anubhooatiyon Ki Aahten ( Collection of Poems),  Tutate Chakrvyuh ( ed-collection of Poems), Band Darwazon Par Dastaken (ed- collection of  Lakhukatha), Chanakya Neeti (edited), Prem Chand Ki Lokpriya Kahaniyan, Prem Chand Ki Sarvottam
Kahaniyan, Yug Pravartak Mahapurush, Yug Nayak Mahapurush, Madhu Parag , Phulwaree and Mahak , Kholo Apne Baste Jee and Jhumen-Nachen-Gayen(Children rhyms) etc..
Ladkiyan Chhoona Chahtee Hain  Aasman, ceremonially released by Mrs. Shila Dixit, Chief Minister of Delhi, is his latest collection of poems. Four students had done M.Phil on this book.
Ashok Lav has been a successful journalist too. He has edited many journals and magazines till date.  His has been associated with Samkaleen Chouthi Duniya (Literary editor), Rashtriya Nilayam (Advisor-editor),  Komal Vichar (editor), Mansi (Advisor-editor), Laghu Katha-Sahitya (chief editor) , New Observer Post, Qutub Mail (Advisor-editor), Yuva Batan (Advisor-editor)  and many other magazines and periodicals. He has been serving as the editor of the Hindi Edition of Mohyal Mitra , a mouthpiece of the General Mohyal Sabha, for last twenty seven  years. This is one of the longest continuously published magazines of Indiaestablished in 1891.  He was awarded with the ‘ Acharya Vijyendra Snatak Smriti Samman’ and ‘ Yagnavalkya Patrakarita Puraskaar’  recently for his outstanding contribution towards Hindi journalism.  For his exploits in the field of Hindi Literature, Ashok Lav has received awards/citations/honors from more than sixty institutions/organizations so far. Among them are Surya Kant Tripathi Nirala Samman,  Creative Foundation Awarad, Mohyal Gaurav Samman, Kabir Samman, Premchand Smriti Samman, Avantika Sahitya Samman, Rashtriya Hindi Sevi Samman etc. to name a few. He has been ordained with titles like Sahitya Shree, Patrakaar Ratna, Sahityalankar , Mohyal Shri etc.  Some notable  institutions/organizations who have honored him are Kendriya Sachivalaya Hindi Parishad,  Dilli Sahitya Samaj, Supathaga, Mitra Sangam, Yuva Chetna Mandal, Sahitya Kala Bharti, Mitra Sansar, Raslok, Samay Sahitya Sammelan, Agaman Manch, Akhil Bhartiya Sahityakar Parishad, Shabd Setu, Amar Sahitya Sansthan etc. The accolades he received were not confined to literature only. His distinguished services as a teacher was well recognized and he received the prestigious Dr Radhakrishnan Smriti Rashtriya Sikshak Puraskar. After retirement from active service as a teacher Ashok Lav has settled down in the Surya Apartments, Dwarka, New Delhi but has never really retired. He has been actively involved in social activities in addition to his literary works .He is one of the guiding lights of organizations like General Mohyal Sabha etc. This simple, adorable writer and poet has touched and inspired many a lives and I am fortunate enough to be one of them.
-Dr Makhan Lal Das   
Director (Academics), Chartered Institute of technology, Abu Road( Rajasthan), E-mail--dasmakhanlal@gmail.com
Contact : Ashok Lav ,FLAT-363,SURYA APTT, PLOT-14,SECTOR-6,DWARKA,NEW DELHI-110075 (M) 9971010063, E-mail: kumar1641@gmail.com

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