Home Art/Culture Urdu mushaira organised in Washington by the alumni of Aligarh University

Urdu mushaira organised in Washington by the alumni of Aligarh University

TCN News

The 44th Annual Mushaira was organized by the Aligarh Alumni Association (AAA), Washington DC on 11th November 2018 in Silver Spring, Maryland.

The Aligarh Alumni Association, Washington DC started the tradition of holding Mushaira more than four decades ago and it is the oldest South-Asian cultural event in Washington. Starting with a humble beginning, it has achieved an international reputation. Almost all renowned and stalwart poets from the Subcontinent have participated in this annual event. Every year 5-6 poets from India, Pakistan, and other countries are invited for their participation. The time constraints allow only a few local poets from USA and Canada to recite their poetry, and a big number of established poets such as Professor Satyapal Anand, come to the mushaira as host-poets to listen to the overseas guest poets. This year’s invited poets were Dr. Salman Akhtar, Mr. Khushbir Singh Shaad, Dr. Sabiha Saba, Dr. Nikhat Iftekhar, Mr. Rehman Faris, Ms. Qania Ada Mr. Saud Usmani, Mr. Hashmat Sohail, Bina Goindi, Dr. Razi Raziuddin, and Dr. A. Abdullah.

Nuzaira interviewing Salman Akhtar

The chief guest for the Mushaira was none other than Sanjeev Saraf, who is the founder of Rekhta.org. The Rekhta organization holds a 3-days annual Jashn-e-Rekhta in Delhi that brings 30-40,000 people of all ages to the program. Saraf, who learned Urdu because of his passion for the language, was very hopeful about the future of the language as the majority of the audiences coming to his Jashn-e-Rekhta are young between the ages of 18-25 years and they represent all sections of the society. Addressing the audience at the Mushaira, he said that the Rekhta Foundation was working out the details of holding similar programs in the various parts of the world, including the United States. He also opined that Urdu is a language that binds people of all religions.

The Alumni honoured Sanjeev Saraf for his efforts in popularising the Urdu language and for his service to Urdu. Sajeev Saraf has digitized copies of more than 30,000 books of Urdu writers and poets on its website.

Sanjiv Saraf receiving associations award

The mushaira was attended by more than 400 Urdu lovers from the diverse sections of the Indo-Pak community. Other dignitaries, including Mr. Imran Arshad, Counsellor (CA), Embassy of Pakistan, Washington DC, presidents and members of the literary and academic associations such as The University of Karachi Alumni Association, The Association of Indian Muslims in America, Halqa-e-Arba-e-Zauq, the Hyderabad Association of Washington Metropolitan Area, The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) Metro-Washington, The Hindi Association, and The Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC were also present.

As always, there was a rendition of Aligarh University Tarana, Yeh Mera Chaman Hai, written by a well-known Aligarian, Majaz Lakhnawi.

The mushaira was presided over by Mr. Khushbir Singh Shaad and skillfully moderated by Dr. A. Abdullah.

Poets with few volunteers