December 7, 2023


Connecting Asian writers with global readers

Short Story: The New Constitution (Originally written in Urdu as Naya Qanoon by Saadat Hasan Manto and translated by Shuyan (Michael) Huang

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Shuyan (Michael) Huang beautifully translates Saadat Hasan Manto’s story Naya Qanoon into English making the poignant narrative come alive in his words.

Mangu the tongawalla was considered a very wise man among tongawallas at his station, or adda. Although his educational level was equal to zero and he had never seen the face of a school, despite of this he knew everything in the world. All those tongawallas at the adda who desired to know what is happing in the world were well informed by master Mangu’s extensive knowledge. 

Several days ago, when master Mangu had heard from a passenger about a rumor that war was going to break out in Spain, he patted Gama Chaudhary’s broad shoulder and predicted in a prudent manner, “You will see, Chaudhary, in a few days a war is going to break out in Spain.” 

And when Gama Chaudhary asked him about where Spain is located, master Mangu answered with absolute firmness, “In God’s kingdom or where else?”

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