“The moths, who forewent over the gleam of truth” Sarmad Khoso’s second book of Essays in Sindhi

Book review by Yasir Qazi

“Sarrya Mathay Sach’a”  (The moths, who lost their lives, burning over the gleam of truth) is the second published book of Sarmad Khoso, an Educator, Educationist, an emerging prose writer of Sindhi language and one, who possesses a tender soul for the conjoint torments of society and humanity. This discomfort compels him to write, not for his recognition, but for being the voice of society. His first book “Taneen Khe Taaleem’a Ji” (Those, who are conferred with the concern of the Education) was published in 2019, which comprised various essays about education in Sindh, addressing the problems of the local academic system and curriculum and recommendations towards their elucidation. This book was also received by the readers and literary circles in Sindh, amiably. 

This on the agenda book of Sarmad Khoso “Sarrya Mathay Sach’a” is a Sindhi prose book, consisting of 27 essays and articles, which were published in various leading Sindhi newspapers, news magazines and social media from time to time, mostly during the last few years. The title of the book is chosen from one of the Sindhi verses of Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai, the noted poet of Sindhi language, which means “The moths, who forewent over the gleam of truth”. This book is published recently on Sunday, May 9, 2021 (Mother’s Day) and Sarmad has initiated a new tradition of getting his books launched by his parents, who both are the utmost source of his inspiration and attainment. This time, this celebration was additionally memorable due to the fact that it took place on the very day, which was already being commemorated as ‘Mother’s Day’ by the world, and I think no day could be more appropriate for reveling such accomplishment of the author, to get his book launched by the golden hands of his mother on her day.   

I was honoured to write the comprehensive foreword of this book, describing a brief history of prose and essay writing as a genre all through the world and in Sindhi literature predominantly. This background follows the current essay-writing trends in Sindhi and the flair of Sarmad’s lettering and exclusivity of his style of jotting down the issues precisely. The book contains a short dissertation of Dr Soomar Khoso, a doctor by profession and a social worker by passion, whose legacy of being in love with letters is carried forward by Sarmad, as the author of the book is the proud eldest son of Dr Soomar. He writes out of extreme adoration about Sarmad and his writing aptitude and is blissful on the assortment of his themes and areas of the articles, he has written. A short comment printed on the back title of the book is written by Zaib Sindhi, a noted Sindhi short story writer and playwright. 

The book entails 27 different essays on various socio-political subjects, the size of each write-up varies. These topics include (1) The shortage of water in the region and the agricultural deterioration (2) While keen-sighting around, my within drowns (3) Youth of Sindh being ridiculed in the name of applying for employment (4) the use of technology in Education (5) Social disconnect (6) The lollypop offered to the public and the real core issues (7) Where will this political turbulence end? (8) The growing population – a massive challenge for the country (9) Rainfall in Sindh: Blessing? Or inconvenience? (10) Save youth of Sindh from obliteration (11) Sindh, in the perspective of global warming (12) The degeneration of forests is hazardous to the environment (13) The genocide of ‘Salvadora persica’ (the tree) in the Badin and Thatta districts of Sindh, Pakistan (14) The incorrect usage of the Sindhi language on local Sindhi television channels (15) Cumulating trends of quacks and evil-eyed magicians in the society (16) Political assurances by the politicians with the inert and acquitted folks (17) Two small images – two enormous grieves (18) Condolences through the FaceBook (19) The causes of annihilation of the nation (20) Minors always learn from their elders (21) Various lame excuses of avoiding Book reading (22) a word for those, who learn a word and pertain to be well-read and a word for the existing educational standards (23) Literary festivals and cultural bonfires: Implications and imperfections (24) COVID-19 and our educational system (25) Dear politicians! You have never owned the public (26) Pandemic and the educational institutions reopened (27) The pupils from rural areas of Sindh and the online Education: Problems and solutions. 

The best part of these write-ups is that this is not only a commentary on the issues, but it is a comprehensive analysis of the substance discussed, along with the indication of fundamental prevailing problems and their number-wise elucidation, so that this could be supportive in policymaking also, if someone is actually thoughtful towards resolving these issues. In this way, this can be measured as input from at least a walk of life headed for the resolution of the afore-mentioned 27 problems. While going through the manuscript, the reader realizes that the author has put forward some very considerable and stern submissions and recommendation regarding fighting global warming, especially in the perspective of Sindh, population control – local scenario with respect to the global outlook, issues related to the local youth and the educational issues, especially the education in the time of the pandemic. 

Murtaza Laghari, on the behalf of Murk Publication, has published this book as its 110th title. Naeem Deswali, an emerging digital artist from Hyderabad Sindh has beautifully designed the title cover of the book, portraying the theme stunningly. This book costs PKR 300/- (US $ 2) and is available on almost every significant bookstall of Sindh, or can be had from the publisher. 

The details of the book can be sought internationally through ISBN # 978-969-7958-33-7

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