Ghalib memorial in Agra, demands Farooque Sheikh

By Hindustan Times

Actor Farooque Shaikh, Sunday demanded a fitting memorial and even a light and sound show to the doyen of Urdu poetry Mirza Ghalib in the Taj city where the poet was born in 1797.

"Not only a memorial, I would say a light and sound programme in the evening should be started for tourists, many of whom could be interested in arts and literature," Farooque said at a panel discussion on Urdu at the Taj Literature Festival here.

Earlier, Urdu writers and poets at the panel discussion discussed how the language unfortunately identified with a community was in essence a potent vehicle for communicating romance, love and adab (culture).

"Woh Urdu ka musafir hai, yehi pehchaan hai uski/ Jahan se bhi guzarta hai, saleeka chhod jata hai... (He is a traveller of Urdu, this is his recognition/ Wherever he passes by, he leaves a way of life)," read Syed Iftikar Jafri, leading the discussion.

Panelists stressed Urdu, a language of the Indian masses, was the language of sweetness and love. "Born and nurtured in India, Urdu was neither a language of gods, nor of Arabs, or Muslims and emperors, but a language of the Indian people and therefore a medium for love," they said.

Talking to IANS, Jafri said the slogan Inquilab Zindabad and patriotic song Saare Jahan se Achcha Hindostan Hamara were gifts from Urdu and the language had enriched Bollywood films in a substantial manner.

Chief guest Dil Tajmahali, Mohammed Arshad, poet Ahmar Jalesari, story writer Shahid Salim Shamshi pleaded for secularisation of languages and called for concrete steps to promote Urdu writing.

Four books were also released on the occasion.

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