Kaifi?s potential remained untapped

KAIFI AZMI?S life and times were remembered by his daughter Shabana Azmi, actor Farookh Sheikh, governor of Haryana Dr AR Kidwai, besides several others at a seminar organised by the Hindi Urdu Sahitya Award Committee on Sunday. The speakers recalled Kaifi?s contribution both as poet, litterateur and social activist.

india Updated: Jun 12, 2006 01:31 IST

KAIFI AZMI’S life and times were remembered by his daughter Shabana Azmi, actor Farookh Sheikh, governor of Haryana Dr AR Kidwai, besides several others at a seminar organised by the Hindi Urdu Sahitya Award Committee on Sunday.

The speakers recalled Kaifi’s contribution both as poet, litterateur and social activist.

Prof Waris Kirmani, who presided over the seminar, felt that Kaifi would have been an even greater poet had he not been inspired by the works of Ali Sardar Jaffri. “I feel that because Kaifi was hugely inspired by Ali Sardar’s work, his true potential was never tapped,” he said, adding that “I feel that Kaifi’s poetry was as pure as that of Aristotle.”

Dr AR Kidwai, Haryana governor, recalled the times that he spent with Kaifi in Mumbai between 1940-45. “I still remember how Kaifi started living with labourers when he was working for their uplift and improvement in their working conditions. His idealism was his very own,” he said.

Shabana Azmi said that the social work she did now was basically due to what her father taught her. “My father felt, pyaar ka jashn nayi tarah manana hoga, gham kisi dil main sahi, gham ko mitana hoga” She also recited another couplet, “aaj ki raat bahut garam hawa chalti hai, aaj ki raat footpath par neend nahi ayegi” to highlight her father’s concern for the poor and the underprivileged.

Farookh Sheikh said that Kaifi Azmi’s life was not very different from his poetry.

Canada’s poet Javed Danish who had come especially to attend the seminar, reflected on Kaifi’s contribution to theatre movement, his role in IPTA.

Shahnawaz Qureshi, litterateur, Abid Sohail besides several others also spoke.
On the occasion, Shabana Azmi also recited a nazm ‘Ajeeb Aadmi tha woh’ that her husband Javed Akhtar had written for Kaifi. Secretary of Hindi Urdu Sahitya Award Committee Athar Nabi proposed the vote of thanks.

First Published: Jun 12, 2006 01:31 IST