Wali Mohammed Wali

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Wali Muhammad Wali
Wali Mohammed Wali New.svg
Born 1667
Aurangabad Maharashtra
Died 1707 (aged 40)
Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Pen name Wali Deccani, Wali Aurangabadi, Wali Gujarati
Occupation Poet
Period Mughal period
Genre Ghazal, masnavi, qasida, mukhammas

Wali Muhammad Wali (1667–1707) (Urdu: ولی محمد ولی ‎, also known as Wali Deccani, Urdu: ولی دکنی, Wali Gujarati and Wali Aurangabadi, was a classical Urdu poet from South Asia.

He is known as the father of Urdu poetry,[1] being the first established poet to have composed Ghazals in Urdu language[2] and compiled a divan (a collection of ghazals where the entire alphabet is used at least once as the last letter to define the rhyme pattern).

Before Wali, South Asian Ghazals were composed in Persian, almost being replicated in thought and style from the original Persian masters like Saa'di, Jami and Khaqani. Wali began, using not only an Indian language, but Indian themes, idioms and imagery in his ghazals. It is said that his visit to Delhi in 1700, along with his divan of Urdu ghazals created a ripple in the literary circles of the north, inspiring them to produce stalwarts like Zauq, Sauda and Mir.

Early life[edit]

Born in 1667 at Aurangabad, an important city in the present Maharashtra State. He loved travelling, which he regarded as a means of education. He visited Delhi, Surat, Burhanpur and also undertook pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina.


Wali Mohammed Wali's visit to Delhi in 1700 is considered to be of great significance for Urdu Ghazals. His simple, sensuous and melodious poems in Urdu, awakened the Persian loving poets of Delhi to the beauty and capability of "Rekhta" (the old name for Urdu) as a medium of poetic expression. Wali Mohammed Wali's visit thus stimulated the growth and development of Urdu Ghazal in Delhi.

He died in Ahmedabad in 1707 in what is now Gujarat state, and was buried in the same city.[2]


Although Wali tried his hand at a variety of verse forms including the masnavi, qasida, mukhammas, and the rubai., the ghazal is his speciality. He wrote 473 ghazals containing 3,225 couplets[3] (Ashaar). His poems were simple, sensuous & melodious.He was a trend setter in classical poetry who helped establish Urdu ghazal in Delhi by inspiring different poets to write in Urdu It is believed that Wali started to have established the tradition of writing ghazals in Urdu and also influencing the other writers when he visited Delhi. Before that, preferred language for ghazals was Persian.[2]

Some of his famous couplets are

Jisay Ishq Ka Teer Kaari Lagay

Use Zindagi Jag Mein Bhaari Lagay

Naa Chode Mohabbat Daame Marg Tak

Jisay Yaar Jaanisoon Yaari Lagay

Naa Howe Use Jag Mein Hargiz Qaraar

Jise Ishq Ki Beqaraari Lagay

Har Ek Waqt Mujhe Aashiq Zaar Koon

Pyaare Teri Baat pyaari Lagay

“Wali” Koon Kahe Tu Agar Yak Bachan

Raqeebon Dil Mein Kataari Lagay[4]


His favorite theme was love – both mystical and earthy – and his characteristic tone was one of cheerful affirmation and acceptance, rather than of melancholy grumbling. He was the first Urdu poet to have started the practice of expressing love from the man's point of view, as against the prevailing convention of impersonating as a woman.

If, on the one hand, Wali unraveled the beauty and richness of the native language as a poetic medium, on the other, he was alive to the vigor and verve of Persian diction and imagery which he successfully incorporated into the body of his verse. He may thus be called the architect of the modern poetic language, which is a skillful blend of Hindi and Persian vocabulary. His diction was unique here is one of his famous ghazal.

Yaad karna har ghari us yaar ka

Hai wazifa mujh dil-e-bimaar ka.

Aarzoo-e-chasma-e-kausar nahin

Tishna-lab hun sharbat-e-didaar ka.

Aakbat kya howega maalum nahin

Dil hua hai mubtla dildaar ka.

Kya kahe tarif dil, hai be nazir,

Harf harf us makhzan-e-Israar ka.

Gar hua hai taalib-e-Aazadgi,

Band mat ho subba-o-zunnaar ka.

Masnad-e-gul manzil-e-shabanam hui,

Dekh rutba dida-e-bedaar ka.

Aye Wali hona srijan par nisaar,

Mudda hai chashm-e-gohar baar ka.


His memorial tomb in Shahibaug, Ahmedabad was attacked by the Hindu mob during riots in 2002 and replaced with makeshift Hanuman temple. It was completely razed and the road was constructed overnight.[2][5][6][7] After protests from citizens and literary class of city, the Public Interest Litigation was filed in the Gujarat High Court.[2]

In 2010, a widely acclaimed short film on Wali's life was made by a film-maker Gopal K. Annam.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://twocircles.net/2014feb28/wali_gujarati_father_urdu_poetry.html#.VpF6dlSLTy0
  2. ^ a b c d e "Wali Gujarati's tomb may be rebuilt following HC directions". The Times Of India. Ahmedabad. February 2012. Retrieved August 18, 2013. 
  3. ^ Kanda, K.C. (1992). Masterpieces of Urdu Ghazal from the 17th to the 20th Century. Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd. p. 18. ISBN 9788120711952. 
  4. ^ "Wali Dakni | Shaa'iri". syaahi.com. Retrieved 2016-01-13. 
  5. ^ a b "Wali Gujarati rediscovered". Times of India. 18 December 2010. Retrieved 30 September 2013. 
  6. ^ Mehta, Harit (2 March 2004). "Vali Gujarati's tomb is still levelled road". The Times of India. Retrieved 5 March 2016. 
  7. ^ Siddharth Varadarajan (2002). Gujarat, the Making of a Tragedy. Penguin Books India. p. 111. ISBN 978-0-14-302901-4. 

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