The Body of Resistance Poet Returns Home after Decades

Relatives and friends of Ustad Khalilullah Khalili, a well-respected author and poet, finally transferred the poet’s body to Kabul from Pakistan where he was buried in 1987, ending a refugee life following Russian invasion at home. 

The relatives feared the Taliban threat after some famous Sufi graves were blown up by insurgent groups. Ustad Khalili, a mammoth supporter of Mujahedeen, escaped to Pakistan alongside thousands of other Afghan families as soon as the Communist parties took power. He then praised the freedom fighters with enormous poems and articles honoring their bravery in the fight against the Red Army and continued to be an outstanding devotee for them. His patriotic poems were often secretly sent inside Afghanistan and distributed among Mujahedeen.

Yesterday, May 27, Afghan lawmakers, students, activists and high-ranking officials gathered to rebury his body in a certified ceremony inside the Kabul University campus. Ustad Khalili’s body came home almost 25 years after his tragic death. Among the government officials attending the ceremony were Minister of Higher Education Obaidullah Obaid, Minister of Information and Culture Makhdom Rahin, Education Minister Farooq Wardak, and the poet son, Afghan Ambassador to Spain Massoud Khalili. Speakers appreciated the decision to have the poet rest in his own country and called it a victory for the nation. 

Ustad Khalili was born in 1907 in Kabul, Afghanistan. He travelled to Europe and North America but declined to live in the West. He returned home and begun his literary work. He served as the governor of Balkh province during the region of Habibullah Kalakani . Mr. Khalili is known as the founder of resistance poetry in Afghanistan which also impressed many Persian-speaking poets in Iran and Tajikistan by his inspiring original style of writing poetry. 

Mr. Khalili, a creative writer, generated over the course of his career a diverse selection ranging from poetry to fiction to history to biography. He published 35 volumes of poetry, including his celebrated works Ashk wa KhonTears And Blood’, composed during the Soviet occupation, and Ayyar az Khorasan ‘Hero of Khorasan’ and with  a collection of his quatrains,.

 Afghanistan Study Group


  1. Very great news , khodawand rohi ustad ra shad dashta bashad janat ha nasib shan , thanks for sharing this great news ,
    Hamid Rahimi
    Toronto Canada

  2. May Allah bless his soul. One correction: According to elders who knew him, he was born in Jabal Saraj, Parwan.

  3. of course it is a good news that a real patriot has at last come back in his motherland though not in life but as a dead body.
    Home invasion