‘He took me to Dabangg on his 95th’

I never believed Husain could die. At his 95th birthday last September in Doha, he took me to see Dabanng. He always treated me like a son.

It is a shame on our nation and our political leaders that they could not stand up to the communal forces who tried to defame him and his art and allowed him to be forced into exile. It is a blot which will forever mark our belief that our nation was a bastion of secular democratic values.

But the people of India never gave up their love for Husain himself and his art.

All of us in the artist's community know full well that Husain's art is so deeply tied into our cultural traditions that it will stand the test of time. He, more than almost anyone else, truly understood the journey our nation embarked on in it's project of modernity after independence.

His project was an epic narrative of our culture, and he has succeeded in full measure.

(Artist Ram Rahman’s parents — Habib and Indrani — were friends of Husain.)


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