Romancing verses: Jashn-E-Rekhta is back, all for the love of Urdu language
Javed Akhtar, Waheeda Rehman, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Nandita Das, Imtiaz Ali are among the Bollywood celebs who will be present at Jashn-E-Rekhta - a three-day Urdu language festival at Delhi’s Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.art and culture Updated: Dec 08, 2017 19:19 IST
It’s time for “waah waah”, for Jashn-e-Rekhta is back with its fourth edition. The festival has revived the appreciation of eloquence and aesthetics of Urdu in a city that has a historical relationship with the language.
Amidst the Urdu lovers at the three-day event, starting December 8, will be celebrities such as lyricist Javed Akhtar, actors Waheeda Rehman, Nandita Das and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, and filmmaker Imtiaz Ali. The fest’s popularity among both the old and new generations makes a strong point for celeb participation.
“Its credibility and appeal has reached a level where people look forward to connect with the festival. We have come some way... when we were not known, it was bit of a challenge to get people to accept our invitation... The festival is curated to bring forward genres and art forms that Urdu lends itself to. And, it’s a blend of popular, intellectual, musical, artistic events, which everyone likes,” says founder Sanjiv Saraf.
Moin Khan, a political science graduate of Delhi University who has been attending the event since its inception in 2015, says, “It’s the perfect place to get lost in the world of Urdu. There’s poetry, music, eminent personalities — all at one place.”
Among the cultural acts will be a Dastangoi by Nadeem Shah and Shankar Musafir, and a performance by Seven Eyes — Tanya Wells (UK) & Paulo Vinícius (Brazil). The concluding act will be a Qawwali by Nizami Bandhu.
Bollywood playback singer Shilpa Rao, a regular at the fest, will perform on December 10. “Ghazal is my first love. I have been singing ghazals since childhood. This is the first time I’ll perform Ghazal Shayari.” About the festival, she adds, “It’s a platform that brings like-minded people together. One can also buy rare books here.”
Rekhta Bazaar is another highlight of the event, with a display of handicrafts, antiquities from Old Delhi, and a wide range of books in Urdu, Hindi and English languages. “Our focus is to get the youth to connect with the language, especially the non-Urdu speaking youngsters. So now, our publications are also in Devanagri,” says Saraf.
Now comes the delicious bit: the food, because no cultural fest can be complete without it, right? Head to Aiwan-e-Zaiqa — a section offering Hyderabadi, Awadhi, Kashmiri and Mughlai cuisines, and popular foods of Old Delhi.
- WHAT: Jashn-E-Rekhta
- WHERE: Major Dhyan Chand Stadium, India Gate
- WHEN: December 8 (6pm onwards); December 9 and 10 (9am onwards)
- NEAREST METRO STATION: Pragati Maidan on the Blue Line
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