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Different Aspects of Khoabnama

Akhteruzzaman Elias was a Bangladeshi novelist and short story writer. He was born in Gaibandha district, February 16th 1943 and died in January 4th 1997. He wrote only two novels in his life of which one of them was Chilekothar Sepai (The Soldier in an attic) 1987. In this novel the writer describe the psychological journey of a man during the turbulent period just prior the Bangladeshi independence in 1971. This novel also contain what is arguably the most authentic description of life in old Dhaka. Another novel that Akhteruzzaman wrote was Khoabnama (Tale of Dreams) 1996. This novel described the socio-political scene in rural pre partition Bangladesh. Akteruzzaman Elias was one of the most powerful writer in Bangladeshi literature articulated spiritually in the form of memory, elegy, dream and intense poetic in his epic-like novel like Khoabnama The plot and characters are designed in polyphonic pattern and its counter narrative begins with the history uprising against the colonial rules in India and spread for the next 200 years. Akhtaruzzaman Elias removed the barrier between real and the unreal and (like Achebe and Marquez) dug deep into the world of myths, legends, history and folklore. It was as if the entire past overflowing with the spiritual vision of fantasy to the decaying present. In Khowabnama Elias composed spiritual hymn in the old Bengali poetic idiom to sanctify the remembrance of the battles past: Interpretation of dreams offers a great help in decoding the desires, achievements, political; social and religious flourish and secret intentions of man. Here the discourse of dream joins spirituality. Interpretation of dreams gives a good account of descriptions about Munshis abode, the myth about him and his movements. Cherag Alis song overflows the current and waves of Yamuna into the water of Bengali river. Akhtaruzzaman Elias seeks the root of a mans spiritual consciousness into his ethnic identity, where development of a personality is inextricably intertwined with pangs of hunger. Tamij always desires to get promoted to an independent plowman from his state of a bonded one. The thin layer of fog, moonlight and the arched lips of Fuljaan, all get mixed into his own self. The beauty, reality and continuous strolls taken by dreams confuse Tamij about the real man who has the proprietary rights over the paddy field.


The Paonagaan of Cherag Ali fakir is basically a marfoti song that tells about the mortal world and theheaven, something that continuously relates the author to his creation through symbolism, imagery and several other discourses of dreams. The lyrics and music of Ponagaan is predefined and spontaneous. They roam about the bucolic regions with do-tara in hand to search the soul-mate. They exist in family but even the family cannot keep them. They stay in darga astana. Around the end of the eighth century, Sufism originated in Arab in order to spread the esoteric and mystic knowledge inscribed in Quran. The Sufism traveled Iran and Afghanistan to enter north and north-western part of India in the dawn of eleventh century. Finally, it arrived in Bengal in the second half of thirteenth century. In fifteenth and sixteenth century, Sufism has its deep mark in the Bengali. The Sufis set their dargas to preach the commoners about the mystic connection between man and Allah. Later in india the Sufism found a support in Buddhism and tantra practices. Sufism influenced the aaul-baul-snai community here. It is also the stemming point of the the Pir community. The song of the Muslim spiritualists of Bengal were primarily called marfot and murshid. In fifteenth and sixteenth century, the muslim fakirs had a small school stemming fromit. They were called madari fakir. In Khowabnama, Cherag Ali fakir represents this school. His song is Paonagaan, according to Keramat, fakirgaan. Cherag Ali is omnipresent in the novel, though not in flesh and blood as an active character, but in rumination, in dream and in interpretation of dream of several other characters. Tamijs father preserves the dreams of this figure. His identity is of a father of a boatman. A raven black complexioned man, he is, with sickly thin structure. His feet have caught unhealthy diseases. He has hairy ears, for a year a wound is there on his knee. 23 His eyes are not clean, and he coughs always and with everything he dreams, and he mutters the hymns of Cherag Ali. He is a simpleton, but he is faithful and hard-working. He walks in his dream and each night he goes to the Katlahars lake where in the north side there is a pakur tree on which resides Munshi Baitullah Shah. The leader of Fakir uprising Majnu shahs disciple, Baitullah rules the lake becoming sunlight in sunlight in daytime and at night, from the top of the pakur tree. Several myths crowd in this association, the boundary, gojar fish, white lamb or the soft flesh of hariyali bird. Akhtaruzzaman Elias has seen spirituality with an objective outlook. He merged reality with history. Delving deep into the history of the lower class he has shown us how popular

belief, folk lore get a permanent place in the lives of the lower class. How politics regulates them. The darga (shrine) of Cherag Ali is forcefully taken for religious reasons. Five new khadem come to the dargatala, and the practise namaz five times a day. They made it a mosque. Cherag Ali, with Kulsum, later stays in the kalam majhis bamboo-stock. Though nobody objects when Cherag Ali goes begging door to door but as time changes, in Chandahas Akanda house, it became a topic of discussion. Cherag Ali has to compromise with the real condition of his life, he says, as a madari fakir he cannot take food alone. Bangladeshi Novels are really extent evidence of spiritually from the beginning, sometimes in popular narrative form and sometimes in counter narrative with binary structure. Spiritually Bangladeshi novels have gradually pointed towards aesthetic sensibility and individual perception and has fascinated for the past with legends, folk-tales and myths. In Khoabnama Akhtaruzzaman Elias describe many aspect of the war in Bangladesh and elaborated very distinctively the condition and surroundings focusing upon the war in 1971. He also narrated the exploitation of lower class people by the higher class people. In Tebhaga andolon where it was decided that the farmers are entitled to receive only 1/3rd of the crop the produce and rest was taken by the landowner. This was exercised because the farmers didnt have their own land and they used the landowners land to cultivate the crops. The novel also shows many relationship among the community and family at that time. He also mentioned the protest between Pakistan and Hindustan.