Chai Khana

Meet Azra Choudhary, the talent behind Dogri Quran

For those who spread hate, this should serve as an eye-opener.

A 62-year-old Muslim woman from the winter-capital has scripted history by translating the Holy Qur’an into Dogri language in a bid to send a message of love, peace and brotherhood across the Hindu-dominated Jammu region.

Azra Chaudhary, former chief editor at Jammu and Kashmir Academy of Art, Culture and Languages, worked tirelessly for five years to translate the Holy Qur’an into Dogri.

This, as per open source information, is the 116th language the Holy Book has been translated into world worldwide.

“My colleague’s husband is the principal of Shah-e-Hamdan Society, Rajouri. They wanted Holy Qur’an translated into Dogri language. So she suggested my name for the project. I was in service at that time. But I said yes and it took me five years to complete the translation,” said Azra.

From proofreading to the final draft, Azra said she did it all by herself.“I was offered money for my work but I refused to take it,” she added.
Azra’s effort is the first such exercise when anyone has attempted and translated the Holy Book into Dogri language in Jammu and Kashmir.

Her strong academic credentials made her an apt choice for the vital translation work.

She has a Masters each in Hindi and Dogri and has authored the Hind-Dogri and Dogri-Hindi dictionaries at Jammu and Kashmir Academy of Art, Culture and Languages.

“After completing my MA Hindi, I got married. My friend recommended me to do MA Dogri as well, but the university did not have that course. Since I was married I said no. But my father-in-law was very forward looking and he told me to go ahead. After that, there was no looking back,” she said.

It was this knowledge of Hindi and Dogri that made her translation work easy.

“When I worked on these dictionaries, my vocabulary became very rich. May be Almighty Allah wanted me to do this translation work. I started with 30th Para (chapter) of Holy Qur’an.

This was sent to Moulana Waheed-ud-Din Khan who, after going through, approved it. Then I worked on other chapters,” she said.

Azra believes the translation will send across a message of peace, clear the misgivings and overcome Islamophobia.

“Those who do not read Holy Qur’an do not know about it. When they will read it, they will find that it gives a message of peace. It will clear misgivings. Violence is from all sides, but it has been linked to a particular community. When they will read Qur’an, they will come to know that it gives a message of love, peace and humanity,” she said.

 

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