How Gulzar reacted when two girls showed up at his home, praised him for poem he never wrote

Published on Aug 18, 2021 06:21 PM IST

Lyricist and poet Gulzar celebrates his 87th birthday on Wednesday. On the occasion we revisit the amusing story when two girls came to meet him at his house.

Gulzar recently worked on the film Chhapaak.
Gulzar recently worked on the film Chhapaak.

Celebrated lyricist and writer Gulzar turned 87 on Wednesday. He is among the most quoted poets of his generation in India and adored by his fans. But there are times when fans end up making mistakes.

In 2019, Gulzar had recalled an amusing incident during a chat with Hindustan Times. He said that once two girls came knocking at his door, telling him all about how a poem written by him that had changed their lives.

The poem, they said, was called Auratein Bhi Ajeeb Hoti Hain (Women are strange, indeed). Gulzar, however, told them they were at a wrong address for he had not written any such poem. But the girls insisted they had read the poem, which was attributed to him on social media.

Gulzar has scores of fanpages on social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. They regularly share verses written by him but often misquote him too. About the issue, Gulzar had said, "Earlier I used to say 99% poems on Whatsapp posted as mine are wrongly attributed to me, but now I can say for sure that 100% of them are fake. I had written a poem called ‘Adatein bhi ajeeb hoti hain’ (Habits are strange, indeed) but I would certainly not write that women are strange!”

However, he knew that many acclaimed writers often get falsely attributed. "This whole thing is upsetting,” said Gulzar, adding, “I will not speak for myself but it pains me greatly, when I find my ideal–the great Ghalib–being wronged thus!” He said, “All I can say is that I am in exalted company. Pranksters have spared no one, not even Ghalib."

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Gulzar recently worked with his daughter Meghna Gulzar on her movie Chhapaak. The film starred Deepika Padukone in the lead as an acid attack survivor. He wrote the lyrics of the film's songs. He is also reportedly working on a book will which recount his encounters with stalwarts of Indian cinema, art, and literature, slated to release this year.

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