When there are poets around, they are always looking for an excuse to get together and share their latest words with each other. Eid al-Fitr proved itself to be just the perfect occasion for such a gathering.
Local poets and Urdu language aficionados from India and Pakistan recently gathered for an ‘Eid Milan’ poetic session organised by Karwan-e-Urdu Qatar (KUQ), a community organisation of Indian expatriates for promotion of Urdu language, at a local hotel.
A large number of poets, writers and literary personalities from India and Pakistan attended the session and heard the latest poetic works from each other.
“This session was unique in a way that people from other community organisations were also invited and they came here and presented their works. It was great to see every one coming together,” Atiq Anzar, the President of KUQ, tells Community.
It is acknowledged by the masters and well-established poets and literary personalities from the sub-continent that Qatar is doing very well in the promotion and preservation of Urdu language through poetry, says Anzar, adding that standard of poetry from the local poets is very good.
The session began with the recitation of the Holy Qur’an by Ramiz Ahmad Naqi after which the hosts invited chief guest Azim Abbas and guest of honour Dr Mohamed Aleem, Third Secretary at the Embassy of India, on to the stage.
Speaking at the occasion, Aleem recited a few couplets from Allama Iqbal’s poetry and praised KUQ for its efforts in organising such sessions. He said everyone needs to work together for the promotion of Urdu.
Azim Abbas said Atiq Anzar, KUQ president, was a “dedicated and active personality” and wished him success in taking KUQ ahead.
“It was a very successful event today. I am always with KUQ, [helping] with whatever I can do. It was a great audience here today and this was enough to tell you how popular this organisation is becoming here,” said Abbas.
Anzar said KUQ was formed with an open mind and everybody is invited to use this platform for the promotion of Urdu language and to present their work.
Nadeem Mahir, Aziz Nabeel, Iftikhar Raghib and many other poets presented very good poetry, said Anzar.
Poets of today, he added, are not just focusing on romantic poetry but are trying to tackle contemporary social issues as well. It is heartening to see that many poets are trying to focus on everyday problems in people’s lives and they are doing well.
The aim of KUQ, which is a relatively new organisation, is only to promote the local talents and provide the literary people with a platform to present and share their works with others. “It is a purely literary organisation and we have no political, financial or religious agendas or affiliations,” said Anzar while talking to Community.
“We only work to promote Urdu language. We try to hold a literary session every month and we would try to hold at least two seminars on the same topic every year. We are planning to hold our first seminar on the topic of the role of poetic sessions in the promotion of Urdu,” said Anzar.
They are also planning to hold a poetic session on Qatar’s National Day, where they would invite poets from India and Pakistan.
In their seminars, Anzar said, they invite local literary experts besides people from outside Qatar. In their regular sittings, for instance, Dr Faisal Hanif hosts a session on sub-continent’s legendary poet Mirza Ghalib where they discuss his poetry with the aim to better understand it, and celebrate it.
Anzar said the inclusion and mixing of foreign language into Urdu is not problematic in its preservation. However, he urged Urdu speakers to endeavour to make it sound more like Urdu, to preserve its identity.
He said there are a great number of Urdu speakers in Qatar from both Pakistan and India. It is one of the biggest languages of communication. But there are not many people who can understand Urdu poetry. However, literary sessions like this promote this understanding of the literature among the people, he added. While selecting poets to participate in their sessions, Anzar said they carefully select people based on the quality of their work and not just their popularity.
Anzar has been associated with Urdu literature and poetry from a very young age. His own poetry is written in contemporary style and has already been compiled into a book. He is currently working on another book.
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