Heer And Ranjha: A Centuries-Old Love Story Still Cited Widely

Heer And Ranjha: A Centuries-Old Love Story Still Cited Widely
Pakistan’s culture dates back a long history of love. ‘Heer Ranjha’ written by Waris Shah is rumoured to be the story of the author’s own love. However, the popular belief is that Heer and Ranjha were two real life personalities who fell madly in love with each other in India. Upon hearing of their undying love, Waris Shah wrote a novel on their love life.

Heer, known to her family as Ezzat Bibi, was from an affluent family of Sial Rajput in Jhang, which is presently Punjab, Pakistan. Stories portray Heer to be a woman in possession of extreme beauty. Ranjha, nicknamed Deedo, was the youngest of the four siblings who lived by the stream Chenab.

Ranjha left his family after a spat over the land his father had left behind upon his demise. Ultimately, he arrived at the town where Heer used to live. He started working for Heer’s father. Upon seeing her, Ranjha was captivated by Heer’s beauty and Heer was dazzled by the way Ranjha used to play the flute. They used to meet each other secretly but it was not long before they got caught by Heer’s jealous uncle, Kaido, and her parents Chuchak and Malki.

Heer was forced by her family and the local priest or 'Maulvi' to marry another man named Saida Khera. Ranjha was devastated and meandered in the roads. Madly in love and devastated by the loss of Heer, he bacame a Jogi (Malang).

While some say that Heer and Ranjha got married to each other, the alleged true story is that Kaido poisoned Heer’s food. When Ranjha got to know of this, he rushed at Heer’s place to aid her, but it was too late. She had already eaten the Laddu and died. Ranjha  later ate the same laddu himself and died by her side.

Heer and Ranjha are buried in Heer's old neighborhood, Jhang. Love-stricken couples and history enthusiasts frequently pay visit to their tomb. The couple and the story of their great love is still cited widely.