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Monday, 11 August 2014 00:00

Chenab: The River Of Romance

Background Song: Sun Vanjhli Di Mithri Taan Ve by Madam Noor Jahan (Heer Ranjha 1970)

The word Chenab is a formulation of the words Chen which means moon and ab which means river. So literally it means Moon River? Chenab River is formed as the glacial melt of the snow topped Upper Himalayas in the Jammu and Kashmir region. It enters Pakistan near the Sialkot district and then flows through the Punjab plain. It flows between the cities of Gujrat and Sialkot until it meets River Jhelum at Trimmu. A little further down, it is joined by River Ravi. Then Sutlej River joins Chenab at Uch Sharif. At this point it is called Punjnad (or literally Five Rivers). This confluence of Rivers finally joins Indus River at Mithankot which ofcourse flows downstream to Arabian Ocean.

The mystic waters of this majestic river hold secrets of four of Punjab's famous love legends. Many a writer and poet has written about Heer-Ranjha, Sohni-Mahiwal and Mirza-Sabhiban and Sassi-Punnu The most famous among them being Waris Shah who immortalized the love story of Heer and Ranjha in his famous poetry. Its on the scenic and lush banks of this river where Ranjha played his enchanting flute and where he first met Heer. Its these waters of Chenab where Sassi was thrown into as a new born child by her royal parents. Its the same waters of Chenab where Sohni drowned while swimming to meet her lover Mahiwal. The story of Mirza and Sahiban blossomed also in the region between Chenab and Ravi rivers.

The muddy waters of this river Chenab have flowed throughout the centuries but in them are the stories and legends of four tragic romances of Punjab. This entry is a dedication to this river and those romances.


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