Mumbai: An impressive and elegant five-colour design, state of the art and of unmatchable quality calligraphy, meticulously embedded and perfectly designed computer graphics, magnifier to further ease recitation combined with useful hints and meanings of difficult words printed diligently in the margins and opinions of experts confirming the translation is free from errors, 13x18 cm2 in size, the only Alafi Quran in the world with Urdu translation is also a master piece of art.
To bring this master piece into existence, a seven-member team toiled day in and day out for seven long years, many a time sacrificing all other engagements including festivals and marriage holidays, spending countless sleepless nights, ignoring sicknesses, and also skipping lunches and dinners innumerable number of times just to make sure that the project is completed as early as possible.
“It was a dream project for us. During the last seven years, we had only one agenda in our mind. To complete the project as early as possible, and for this, we sacrificed everything”, Mohsin Jaleel, who did the computer work for this masterpiece, said while talking to ummid.com.
Explaining why this Alafi Quran is unique, he said, “Every page of this Alafi Quran has a total of 13 lines of Arabic texts and their Urdu translation. Every line of the page starts with the letter ‘Alif’. Below the Arabic text and translation is the ‘tafseer’ [interpretation] in the Urdu language. This is for the first time an Alafi Quarn is published with the Urdu translation.”
He said the Arabic text is a fully calligraphic work whereas the Urdu translation is a computer work, and composed using the InPage software.
“The Arabic calligraphic work is of Kaatib Mehmood Ahmed Ab Haque. He first wrote the Arabic text line by line in big size by hand. It was then enlarged and cleaned using computer software before the final use”, he added.
Kaatib Mehmood is a renowned calligrapher based in Mumbai whose father, Kaatib Ab Haque, has to his credit 140 different calligraphic works for Quran published by the Taj Company.
The five-color border on every page and the one on the opening page are also the artwork of Kaatib Mehmood. These artworks are also first created manually, and later enlarged and cleaned using computer software.
The Urdu texts though are composed using InPage Urdu software, they too have many firsts.
“The InPage Urdu software has certain shortcomings, especially the visible faults when two characters and letters are joined together. To correct this fault, we had to change the ligatures of some of the fonts”, Mohsin Jaleel, a Malegaon based computer graphic designer in whose name InPage Urdu has integrated two fonts in the upcoming version, said.
These fonts will also be made available to other users in the new version of the InPage Urdu.
For the Urdu translation too, utmost care was used so that it is error free, and has no ambiguity.
“For the translation of this Alafi Quran, we have used the original Urdu texts of Ahmed Raza Khan Barelvi’s notable work. Then, we took the help of a renowned scholar for the proof reading”, Mohsin said.
The Quran was released in Baghdad, the capital of Iraq, and a copy was gifted to Baghdad’s central library. Such was the craze for this unique Quran that the first edition of 1000 copies was finished within hours.