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Lok Virsa to launch Lok Baithak on 9th Jan 

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ISLAMABAD: National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Lok Virsa has announced to start a new fortnightly series of folklore and folk music called “Lok Baithak” here from 9th of January.
With the advent of new year, “Lok Baithak” Program has been presented by Research and Media section of Lok Virsa. The first program will take place on Wednesday and that will be arranged on alternate Wednesdays.
The main purpose behind “Lok Baithak” is to revive the informal settings of the traditional and rural communities. These Lok Baithaks were multifaceted and used to serve the multiple purposes of associationalism, camaraderie, entertainment, social cohesion, knowledge sharing, the creation of disciplinarian and organizational spirit, and above all hub of promotion of art and culture in the general communities.
“Lok Baithak” at Lok Virsa would be run while being true to the mandate of Lok Virsa i.e. the promotion of folk and traditional heritage of Pakistan. This program would be open to the people of all age groups and to all ethnicities, in the style that they themselves would be the speakers and listeners with Lok Virsa as regulator and facilitator only. Agenda of the next Baithak sittings would also be set in the general meetings of the Baithaks making people feel this as their very own program.
“Our audience is encouraged and allowed to bring their musical instruments and crafts that they specialize in. They would be mobilized to share the values, knowledge, wisdom, stories, songs, tales, fables, epics, jokes, traditional games, riddles etc. Overall everything falling within the domain of folklore of their respective regions. Singers and musicians among them would sing and play music. Lok Virsa would make its contribution through inviting a folk/ semi-classical / classical singer or through musical performance. We would also invite traditional treasurers (gunny, sughars people etc.) who have a lot to share about the folk and traditional heritage of their respective regions”, said the organizers.
The star artist of first “Lok Baithak” would be Muhammad Ali a renowned ghazal, semi-classical and folk singer. He learned music from Ustad Mehdi Hassan, Ustad Shokat Manzoor, and Ustad Allah Rakha. Among accompanist, Ustad Nizakat Ali Khan on harmonium and Ustad Amanat Ali Khan on tabla will show their skills.

 

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Khalida Hussain, Fehmida Riaz remembered

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ISLAMABAD: Speakers at a reference held here Tuesday paid rich tribute to Fahmida Riaz and Khalida Hussain, saying that both were symbols of courage, bravery, and resistance who fought their whole lives for rights of the oppressed and marginalized class of the society.
Family, friends and noted literary colleagues during the reference said that their writings, poetry, fiction stories, and poems reflected the true picture and stark realities of the society. Both were great literary personalities, having deep knowledge and understanding of the society. Their contribution to the literature and society cannot be ignored and shall always be remembered. The reference to pay tribute to Fahmida Riaz and Khalida Hussain was organized here by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI).
Kishwar Naheed, renowned Urdu Poet said that Fahmida Riaz was against conservative thoughts which also depicts in her writings and poetry. Her fictions and poetry usually revolved around the socio-political conditions of the subcontinent after partition. Kishwar while expressing her thoughts for Khalida Hussain said that her name was a big name in the literature. Every single novel and fiction of Khalida Hussain depict the different and true picture of the society, she added.
Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Executive Director, SDPI said that Sustainable development and sustainable societies cannot be accomplished and achieved without the contributions of such noted literary figures whose work cannot be ignored.  He said that if Fahmida Riaz and Khalida Hussain do not raise the issues of oppressed women class, our society would remain backward. He said that our young generation should familiar with the struggle and contribution of such great literary figures for their contribution to literature and society.
Ahmed Salim, a Noted Progressive Writer, and Senior Advisor Education & Religious Diversity, SDPI said that there is need to acknowledge the work of both great literary personalities and realize the new-generation about their work and contribution.
Hameed Shahid, Fiction Writer said that Khalida Hussain and Fahmida Riaz were two different ladies by natures but full of life and creation. He said that Khalida Hussaisn’s life revolved around movements, resistance, and demonstrations. She spent her life fighting for her thought and ideology, which mostly about existence and identity.
She was, though, not a feminist but her work depicts the very issues of women. He said that to understand Khalida Hussain, one should read “Dadi Jan aj Chuti par hain”, a masterpiece of her fictions. Whereas, Fahmida Riaz, work in fiction cannot be ignored. ‘Jhano ko Chithi mili’ was her best fiction work which depicts the true picture of the society. Dr. Najeeba Arif, of International Islamic University Islamabad, said that we should be thankful to these two great ladies who empowered us through her writings, fictions, poetry, and poems.
Yasra, daughter of Khalida Hussain while expressing her thoughts at the reference said that her mother was a compassionate, humble and brave lady. She said that her mother was not a feminist but she wanted to see women naturally strong and empowered.
Ishfaq Salim Mirza, a noted progressive writer said that my first encounter to Fahmida Riaz was through her literary collections which include Badan Dareeda and Pathar ki Zaban. He said that Fahmida was among those literary personalities whose work always be remembered, whereas, Khalida Hussain was a confident lady who was committed to her work.
Fatima Hassan, Urdu Poet said that Fahmida Riaz was a symbol of resistant who did not compromise on her thought, believes and ideology, whereas, Khalida Hussain raises awareness among women through her writing and fictions. Dr. Humaira, Urdu Editor and Research Fellow SDPI said that both great ladies fought for the oppressed and marginalized class of the society.  She said that both were a symbol of courage and bravery, which reflected in their writings, poetry, fiction stories, and poems.

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First death anniversary of renowned poet, columnist Munnu Bhai today

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ISLAMABAD: The first death anniversary of renowned poet, playwright and columnist Muneer Ahmed popularly known as Munnu Bhai is being observed on Saturday (January 19).

He was born in 1933 at Wazirabad, Punjab.

According to a Radio Pakistan report, he started his career as a journalist at an Urdu newspaper but soon turned to writing dramas.

He penned down some of the immortal drama serials for Pakistan Television including ‘Sona Chandi’, ‘Dasht’, ‘Tammanna’, ‘Gumshuda’, ‘Aashiyana’ and ‘Khoobsurat’.

Munnu Bhai was also awarded with Pride of Performance by the government of Pakistan.

He died on January 19, 2018 in Lahore.

 

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Abandoned reading rooms to be revived

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Abandoned reading rooms to be revived

KARACHI: Commissioner Karachi, Iftikhar A Shalwani here today approved proposed constitution of a Council of Libraries to help revive abandoned reading rooms & relevant facilities in the Metropolis.
Chairing a meeting of librarians and concerned administrative staff, representing public libraries as well as those run by nongovernment sector, he said a pragmatic approach was needed to protect and restore many of these left unattended over the years. Taking stock of massive decline in the number of libraries over the years, he said the ever-expanding city is found to have little room for reading culture.
“We have to inculcate reading habits among our children and youth besides creating a pleasant and congenial environment for the citizens with good literary taste,” he said. Senior professionals including directors and senior librarians associated with Liaquat National Library, Frere Hall Library, DHA Library, British Council also attended the meeting. They assured to extend their support and services for the cause.

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