Artistes gear up for writer Premchand's birth centenary | india | Hindustan Times
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Artistes gear up for writer Premchand's birth centenary

india Updated: Jul 04, 2006 13:14 IST
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As the nation prepares itself to mark the birth centenary of renowned short story writer and novelist Munshi PremChand, at least 11 popular artistes from different parts of the country have arrived here to bring alive some of the characters from his most appreciated stories.

Different characters are being sculpted to remember the works of the prolific writer.

"On the occasion of Munshi Premchand's birth centenary, we are sculpting the character sketches of his story. Initially, we studied the stories and tried to sketch the characters. We are trying to bring alive the character sketches of Munshi Premchand's stories," said Benu Gopal Parashar, an artiste from Delhi Art College.

Ahead of the 125th birth centenary celebrations of the legendary Hindi writer Munshi Premchand in July, renovation work is being done in his ancestral village of Lamahi in Varanasi as the nation prepares to celebrate the renowned short story writer.

But the President of the Premchand Memorial Trust has alleged that the original structure of the luminary writer's house was tampered and thus it should be restored.

The Trust has placed its demand before the District Magistrate to order the restoration of the original structure.

"The original structure of the residence was different and it was distorted by the development authority many years ago. We have demanded to the District Magistrate to restore the original structure," said Ramesh Dube, President of Premchand Memorial Trust.

Munshi Premchand (July 31, 1880-October 8, 1936) (pen name: Premchand) was one of the greatest literary figures of modern Hindi and Urdu literature.

Born as Dhanpat Rai Srivastava on July31, 1880 in Lamahi near Varanasi, his father worked as clerk in a post office. But his parents died young - his mother when he was seven and his father while he was fourteen and still a student. He was left responsible for his step-mother and step-siblings.

Early in life, he faced immense poverty, earning a meagre five rupees a month tutoring a lawyer's child. He passed matriculation exams with great effort and took up a teaching position, with a monthly salary of eighteen rupees.

Later, Dhanpat Rai worked as the deputy sub-inspector of schools in what was then the United Provinces.

Initially, Premchand wrote in Urdu under the name of Nawabrai. However, when his novel Soz-e-Watan was confiscated by the British, he started writing under the pseudonym Premchand.

Before Premchand, Hindi literature consisted mainly of fantasy or religious works. Premchand brought realism to Hindi literature. He wrote over 300 stories, a dozen novels and two plays.

The great writer died on October 8, 1936.

The famous filmmaker, late Satyajit Ray had made films on his works like Sadgati and Shatranj Ke Khiladi. 

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