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Bollywood figures grace Bazm-e-Urdu event
By Jamil Khan August 21, 2018
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DUBAI: A large number of Urdu language patrons attended the 5th edition of the ‘Mehfil-e-Urdu’ to show their loyalty to the one of the major languages being spoken by millions of people in India, Pakistan and around the world.

The gala launch was a star-studded event where Urdu lovers got to attend an exclusive meet-and-greet with the gutsy director Nandita Das, the ever-versatile Nawazuddin Siddiqui, the charismatic Shahbaz Khan and the mind behind Antakshri, SaReGaMa and several other reality shows, Gajendra Singh.

A non-profit, non-religious and non-political organisation, Bazm-e-Urdu is the only organisation in the UAE that is registered under the Community Development Authority (CDA) and strives towards promoting Urdu globally.

Mehfil-e-Urdu commenced in the evening where the huge turnout of people was way beyond what was expected. As attendance for the event was by invite only, Bazm-e-Urdu found itself pleasantly surprised when the passes ran out three days prior to the event and the eager audience continued to ask for more till the last minute.

The 1,600-seater Sheikh Rashid Auditorium experienced a full house for what was surely a treat for Urdu lovers.

The Josh-e-Urdu Award for service to Urdu, instated by Bazm-e-Urdu in the sweet memory of renowned poet Josh Malihabadi, is awarded annually to an individual or organisation to recognise their efforts and honour their work for the Urdu language.

This year’s recipient was Padma Shri Dr Basheer Badr, who is known for his eloquent expressions of anguished love and the many mysteries of life. The well-acclaimed poet, who has 69 award-winning ghazals to his name, has mastered the art of touching the hearts of the masses through his simple style of poetry.  The second segment of the mesmerising event included a conversation with Team Manto where Dubai’s very own presenter, Tarannum Ahmed, interviewed Nandita Das and Nawazuddin Siddiqui about their upcoming film.

The star-struck audience applauded and hooted as dialogues were enacted and laughs were exchanged. The ‘Rubaru’ (conversation) shed light on the making of the film Manto, a tribute to the life of the outspoken and courageous Urdu poet Saadat Hassan Manto.

The last segment of the show titled ‘Bollywood ki Kahani Urdu ki Zabani’ was filled with stellar performances that left the audience asking for more. Written by Suhail Akhtar and coordinated by Tarannum Ahmed, the concept was the brainchild of Rehan Khan, founder of Bazm-e-Urdu.

Bazm-e-Urdu takes immense pride in and hopes to continue providing a platform to people from all regions and religions to taste the sweetness and feel the beauty of the Urdu language.

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