Azadi, translating a call for freedom


Azadi is an Iranic word, meaning freedom and liberty. The word is used in other Iranic languages, such as Luri, Pashto, Kurdish, and Baluchi and is also borrowed by other languages such as Azeri Turkish, Hindi, Urdu and Kashmiri.

Some words have a greater significance if not crudely translated. The word ‘azadi’ signifies more than liberty. It not just speaks of the act of being free, as much as the possession of a fundamental right as a human being. I would refrain from romanticizing a concept so seeped in violence and misery, for the people who wrote and sang these words fight and bleed, for their azadi even as I write.

I am rarely ever political, I translate these words as humanely as I can, in a small attempt to remind every single angry Indian, what the Kashmiris are truly fighting for.

They do not fight to leave India and go to Pakistan. They fight for something so simple, so basic, it will break your heart if you would just listen.

This is a liberal translation of an impromptu speech-turned- song by a Kashmiri Protester


By sharing the cause a little,

A little freedom, or azadi.

It is coming, it is coming azadi

The return of the time of flowers,

Blooming in bursts of fragrance,

That once beloved Azadi,

The very life of ours, Azadi

More loved than life, our Azadi.

You traitors, listen its liberty

You betrayers, listen its liberty

A little through common effort,

Why are you afraid? Its Azadi.

Come forward, its azadi

Make an unbroken circle of azadi.

*PDP listen to our Azadi,

BJP listen to our Azadi,

Sonia you too, listen to our liberty

Advani, listen to Azadi.

For take our liberty we will,

It is our promise, this azadi.

If you don’t give us our freedom,

we will claim it, our azadi

For that child wants his freedom

That old man wants his freedom

My brothers want azadi,

My sisters want azadi,

Who ever I ask, says Liberty

So what did my mother say?


So I asked her again, she said Azadi

So I asked her again, she said Azadi,

Louder she said- Azadi

So say it with force- azadi

shout it aloud, azadi

You can say it too, azadi

Our blooming, bursting liberty,

Our flowers of azadi.

The beat of our heart says azadi,

So why should we fear, its liberty.

It mirrors our mind, azadi

It is a balm for our tears, azadi

The glow of our skin is azadi

Like diamonds it sparkles, our pure azadi.

So tell us why should we not ask for our azadi?

Take we will, our azadi

It is our promise, this azadi.

Those mountains call for liberty,

these rivers ask for azadi

Our very soil wants Azadi

The waterfalls want their azadi

So you too can ask for azadi,

Say it a little louder, azadi

Say it united, azadi

Dance, rejoice when you ask for liberty

It is our promise, this azadi

We will take this, our azadi

Dear God, give us our Azadi.

*NB: sonia- refers to Sonia Gandhi, Indian politician, who has served as President of the Indian National Congress party since 1998.

PDP-The Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party is a state political party in Jammu and Kashmir, India.

BJP- The Bharatiya Janata Party is one of the two major political parties in India, along with the Indian National Congress

Advani-Lal Krishna Advani is an Indian politician and a senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party.


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