Mirza Ghalib to be remembered at unique two-day event:
When the kathak maestro Uma Sharma, writer-diplomat Pavan K Varma,
heritage activist Firoz Bakht Ahmed, poet Gulzar Dehlvi, bureaucrat
Abid Hussain and the couplets of Ghalib go together, the churning
produces Yadgar-e-Ghalib - a two-day commemoration of Mirza Ghalib
Dec 26-27 ....
Agra: Doyen of Urdu poetry Mirza
Ghalib, whose 212th birth anniversary is being observed Sunday,
still does not have a proper memorial, or a lane named after him in
the city of his birth -- Agra.
This despite the
fact that demands for a Mirza Ghalib chair at the Agra University
and an auditorium with a research library have been hanging fire for
Pradesh governor Rajeshwar Rao had asked the Agra University to
institute a Chair in Ghalib's name, and the Agra Municipal
Corporation had passed a resolution renaming Bhagwan Talkies
crossing as Mirza Ghalib circle. Decisions are pending on both,"
Surendra Sharma, president of Braj Mandal Heritage Conservation
Society told IANS.
"The Taj city is identified with three
pillars of Urdu Adab -- Mir Taqi Mir, Ghalib and Nazeer Akbarabadi,
but unfortunately nothing has been done to perpetuate their memory.
Stones alone do not make heritage. Literature, traditions, culture
are all part of the heritage that we must preserve," said Sandeep
Arora, former president of the Agra Hotels and Restaurants
"When foreign tourists visit Agra,
particularly from Pakistan and other West Asian countries, they ask
us about Ghalib's house. We have been requesting the tourism and
other departments to build a memorial to the great poet but so far
our efforts have been futile," added Rakesh Chauhan, hotelier and
the president of the Hotels Association.
Mirza Asad Ullah Khan 'Ghalib' is
considered the Shakespeare of Urdu and was born in 1796 in Agra,
once the capital of Mughal rulers. He died in Delhi in 1869, leaving
behind a rich legacy of poetry that continues to inspire poets.
"The 'haveli' (palatial house) where
Ghalib was born should be acquired by the state government and
converted into a fitting memorial to Mirza Ghalib," a resolution
passed at a meeting of experts said.
The 'haveli' is in Kala Mahal area, in
the heart of the city and an educational institution run by a trust
currently uses it. Agra's literary fraternity wants that the
government should open a research academy at the site.