Eternal Echoes: A Celestial Saga of Kashmiri Marsiya Maestro, Tribute to Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi

wilayattimes (Jammu and Kashmir)

In homage to him, who painted Karbala’s tale with heartfelt tears, where devotees echoed their grief through chest-beating and torn garments. My uncle, Zakir Mushtaq Hussain Sufi, leaves an eternal imprint on the canvas of Kashmiri elegy.

By Zakir Mujtaba Sufi

In the expansive realm where echoes gently sway,

A voice ascended, touched by a heavenly display.

Imam Barghas stand tall, grand in their presence,

Resonating with sacred verses, a divine essence.

Through hidden dimensions, whispers persist,

A melody of sanctity, timeless and artist.

In the fabric of time, their words unfurl,

Blessed speakers, their tales in a quiet swirl.

Voices, like soft whispers in the divine breeze,

Imam Barghas resonate, transcending earthly decrees.

A symphony of devotion, an art from the celestial chart,

In the echo, solace embraces every heart.

In homage to him, who painted Karbala’s tale with heartfelt tears, where devotees echoed their grief through chest-beating and torn garments. My uncle, Zakir Mushtaq Hussain Sufi, leaves an eternal imprint on the canvas of Kashmiri elegy.

Guided and mentored by his father, the esteemed maestro of Kashmiri elegy,Sultanul zakireen Al-Haj Ghulam Mustafa Hussain Sufi, Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi not only imbibed the teachings but also kindled the flame of his father’s legacy. He brought a new and practical dimension to Kashmiri elegy, ensuring its continued brilliance.

With a remarkable mastery of the Kashmiri language encompassing its structuralism, syntax, and melody, this family has played a pivotal role. Their contribution extends beyond preserving Kashmiri elegy to actively safeguarding the essence of the Kashmiri language.

Their recitation of countless Kashmiri elegies has become a shared experience, echoing even among tender-aged children. It’s noteworthy that many among them have committed these elegies to memory, significantly enriching the Kashmiri vocabulary for the newer generation. The authentic Kashmiri diction used in these verses has played a vital role in this linguistic continuity.

Zakir Mustafa Ahmad Sufi, a distinguished figure in the realm of elegies, carved a niche for himself through his unparalleled mastery over numerous compositions. His artful recitations elevated him to the status of a hallmark in the world of elegiac poetry.

Sufi’s journey as a reciter of elegies was a testament to his dedication and profound understanding of the craft. He stood as a beacon, carrying forward the rich tradition of elegy recitation with finesse and passion.

The hallmark of his artistry lay in his ability to breathe life into the verses, infusing each elegy with emotion, depth, and resonance. Sofi’s recitations were not merely performances; they were poignant expressions that resonated with the hearts of the audience.

One could not overlook the vast repertoire of elegies that Sofi mastered. His proficiency spanned a range of compositions, each carrying its unique narrative and emotional weight. From “Qadr-u-Jalal” to “Suto’on,” “Fad’ak” to “Shama Parda,” he navigated through the diverse landscape of elegies with grace and authenticity.

Sufi’s commitment to the art extended beyond the technicalities of recitation. He was a custodian of the cultural and linguistic heritage embedded in the elegies. The authenticity of his delivery, coupled with a deep understanding of the cultural nuances, enriched the audience’s experience.

In the echo of Zakir Mustaq Hussain Sufi’s recitations, there was a profound connection between the past and the present. His renditions served as a bridge, connecting generations through the timeless art of elegy recitation. The impact of his performances was not confined to the immediate audience but rippled through the cultural fabric, leaving an enduring imprint.

As a maestro of elegies, Sufi brought more than vocal prowess to the stage. He embodied the spirit of the narratives he recited, becoming a conduit for the emotions, struggles, and triumphs embedded in each elegy. His art transcended mere recitation; it was a heartfelt expression that resonated with the spiritual and cultural essence of the Kashmiri Marsiya tradition.

In the hands of Zakir Mustafa Hussain Sufi, elegies became more than verses; they became living entities that captivated, consoled, and inspired. His mastery extended beyond the technicalities, touching the soul of the audience and perpetuating the legacy of eloquent recitations in the rich world of Kashmiri cultural heritage.Zakir
Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi has mastery over numerous elegies which has made him the hallmark of reciting elegies

Such as “Qadr-u- Jalal , Suto’on, Fad’ak ,

Shama Parda, Ijtihaad ,Mah -i-Ramzan ,Rad -e- jangi Shab ,

Paigambari ,Wa’az, Qu’oh , Reh’m’at Be’hi’sht , J’a’far , Fai’tul ‘Ah’bab” L’aal.

Some of his Distinguished elegies

“Sh’ut’ur , Be’hi’sht ,Aiyeena , Satar-ul -Ayoub Ala’m, Gul’ab , Aam’maam-I safaid Shar’aab -e tuho’or ,Dare Bala , Khayal and Darya”


“O Allah, the sanctuary of praise is like a court of grace,

What a magnificent and dignified sovereign, triumphant , a devotee of eloquence.

Guided by the divine, with the essence of Bismillah, the quill scribes words of wisdom,

Munshi, expressing destiny, inscribing tales in the name of Allah.”

In the ethereal circles of time,Sultanul zakireen Haji Mustafa Hussain Sufi, a regal figure in the realm of Kashmiri Marsiya, bid farewell, not long after his eminent father, the king of elegies, Zakir. Together, this father-son duo poured their blood into the service of Kashmiri Marsiya, a family perennially echoing with the elegiac resonance of “YA Hussain (As).”

Alas, Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi, the torchbearer of this legacy, didn’t tread the earthly paths for an extended journey after his father. However, in the brief span he graced, he wielded the art of Kashmiri elegy with unparalleled prowess, adding his own chapter to the melodic tales of remembrance. The extraordinary reciter Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi’s Profound Connection with Elegies had an evidence in kashmiri Marsiya art. Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi , a luminary in the realm of reciting elegies, possessed a rare and exceptional talent that allowed him to effortlessly navigate through the verses penned by eminent poets like Hazrat Mirza Abu’l Qasim “RA,” Fakeer, and Munshi writers. His ability to seamlessly recite compositions from diverse authors showcased not only his technical prowess but also a profound connection with the soul-stirring verses.

At the heart of sufi’s artistry was his deep understanding and appreciation for the elegies written by Hazrat Mirza Abu’l Qasim “RA.” These verses, filled with spiritual depth and poetic brilliance, found a poignant resonance in Sufi’s recitations. His renditions brought to life the emotions, struggles, and profound spiritual insights embedded in the works of this revered poet.

Additionally, sufi’s repertoire extended to elegies penned by Fakir and Munshi writers. The diversity in his selection highlighted his versatility and the breadth of his understanding of Kashmiri literature. Whether it was the poignant verses of Fakir or the eloquent compositions of Munshi writers, Sufi’s recitations breathed life into each word, creating an immersive experience for his audience.

What set Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi apart was not only his technical ability but also the genuine love and respect he garnered from the people. His kind nature and humble demeanour endeared him to audiences far and wide. It was not merely a recital; it was a shared experience where the audience felt a deep connection with the reciter.

Sufi’s extraordinary gift for elegy recitation became a source of solace and inspiration for those who had the privilege of witnessing his performances. The sincerity with which he approached each elegy, regardless of the author, reflected a devotion to the art that went beyond the superficial.

In the hearts of the people, Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi became more than a reciter; he became a custodian of the cultural and spiritual heritage woven into the fabric of Kashmiri elegies. His legacy is not just in the verses he recited but in the indelible impact he left on the hearts and minds of those who had the honor of experiencing his art.

As we reflect on Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi extraordinary journey through the verses of Hazrat Mirza Abu’l Qasim “RA,” Fakeer, and Munshi writers, we are reminded of the enduring power of elegies to transcend time and touch the deepest recesses of the human soul. Sofi’s contributions to this timeless tradition stand as a testament to the profound connection between the reciter, the verses, and the hearts of those who listen.

On the sombre day of 9th January 2022, the earthly realm bid farewell to a luminary in the world of elegies, Zakir Mushtaq Hussain Sofi. His departure marked not an end but a transition, as he embarked on a celestial journey to join the illustrious company of Imam Hussain “As.”

For years, Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi graced the mortal stage with his extraordinary gift of elegy recitation. His voice, laden with emotion and devotion, became a source of solace and inspiration for countless souls. However, on that fateful day, his earthly sojourn concluded, and he ascended to continue his divine calling in the heavens.
As he crossed the threshold between this world and the next, the hearts of those who had witnessed his art were left with a profound sense of loss. Yet, in the nexus of grief, there lingered a thread of comfort—the belief that Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi had merely transitioned to a grander stage, where he could continue his mission of reciting elegies in the divine presence.

In the celestial abode, where the echoes of Imam Barghas resound with eternal grace,Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi found his place among the blessed souls. The remaining elegies that he was destined to recite found their audience in the realm where the sacred and the sublime converge.

Imam Hussain “As,” the revered figure whose saga was often the focal point of Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi renditions, now became the primary audience for the remaining verses. As he embarked on this heavenly recital, the heavens themselves bore witness to the continuation of a tradition that transcended the boundaries of time and space.

While the mortal world mourned the departure of a maestro, the celestial spheres welcomed a soul whose artistry would now resonate in the divine realms. Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi journey to meet Imam Hussain “As” was not an end but a continuation—a cosmic extension of his earthly endeavours.

As we reflect on this transition, we are reminded that the impact of an artist transcends the confines of mortality. Zakir Mushtaq Ahmad Sufi legacy lives on, not just in the memories of those who heard his earthly recitations but In the celestial echoes that now reverberate through the heavens. (WILAYAT TIMES)