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Festival for Sahir Ludhianvi

March 11, 2010

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LAHORE, March 10 A one-day Sahir Ludhianvi festival will be held at Bagh-i-Jinnah Open Air Theatre on Friday (tomorrow).

The Punjab chapter of the Progressive Writers Association has organised the event.

The festival will open with a seminar titled 'Sahir's personality and works'. The seminar will be presided over by Hameed Akhtar. The participants will be Nisar Safdar, Husain Majrooh, Ahmad Aqeel Ruby, Amjad Ali Shakir, Asad Mufti, Dr Ziaul Hsana, Abib Husain Abid and Khalid Mehmood.

In the afternoon there will be a poetry sitting which will be presided over by Aslam Gurdaspuri.

A music concert is also part of the festival in which Ustad Hamid Ali Khan, Suriya Khanum, Saieen Zahoor, Jawad Ahmed, Aqeel Manzoor, Muhammad Jawad, Rustam Fateh Ali, Shafqat Salamat Ali and a few other vocalists will perform.

Born into a landlord family in 1922, Sahir Ludhianvi's early education was in Khalsa High School, Ludhiana.

In the college, he was quite famous because of his revolutionary nazms. After being expelled from the college in 1943, Sahir settled in Lahore. Here, he completed his first Urdu work, 'Talkhiyaan' (Bitterness).

He then began searching for a publisher and after two years, he found one in 1945. After his work was published, he began editing some Urdu magazines. Later, he became a member of the Progressive Writers Association.

However, inflammatory writings in 'Savera,' an Urdu magazine, resulted in issuance of a warrant for his arrest by the Pakistan government. Somewhere in 1949, Sahir fled from Lahore to Delhi.

After a couple of months, he settled in Bombay. He was a popular Urdu poet and a songwriter.

He won the Filmfare Award twice in 1964 and 1977, and was awarded the Padma Shri award in 1971. He died in 1980.