Gulzar: this name has become a legend not only in the field of films, but also in the field of literature. Born in Pakistan, in 1934, Gulzar came to India after partition and started his career as an assistant to celebrated Director Bimal Roy and Hrishikesh Mukherjee. In a career spanning 40 years, Gulzar has written stories for around 60 films and directed 17 movies, each one a masterpiece. During 1980's he did one of the most outstanding jobs for the small screen, the serial called Mirza Ghalib, a tribute to the legendary poet. Mirza Ghalib will remain one of the most memorable TV productions for its music, direction, dialogues and portrayal of Ghalib by Naseeruddin Shah. Infact, Gulzar calls himself the third servant of Ghalib, next to Ghalib's wife and his faithful servant.
As a tribute to Ghalib, Gulzar was in the capital during the 214th birth anniversary of this great poet on 27th December. A marble bust of poet was installed at Galib's Gali Qasam Jaan haveli in walled city. Gulzar also took part in the annual candle march from the Townhall to Gali Qasim Jaan on the eve of Ghalib's birthday.
Gulzar firmly believes that while reading and appreciating the foreign writers and poets, we should not ignore our own writers and poets.
He said that he is not sure whether things will change or people start reading and admiring Ghalib after all this Ghalib movement, but still some body has to take initiative to preserve our heritage, literature for next generation. The public should come forward and raise the voice and fund, things will set to go.
Lyricist Gulzar, who attributes his poetry to Mirza Ghalib, feels the legendary poet was a great egotist because of his different style of poetry. He dared to write the poetry in Urdu when his contemporaries preferred to write in Persian.
At present, he is working on Rabindranath Tagore as this is his 15oth birth year. Gulzar feels that people know Tagore only for kabuliwala and cannot think of him beyond that. But Gitanjali is the work which appeals Gulzar most. He wants to make Tagore popular among children.
So far film direction is concerned, now it does not fascinate Gulzar any more. He thinks it is time consuming and too much commercialised.
Translation is the form of literary work, Gulzar is doing now a days. He has translated poems of marathi poet Kusumagraj and working on others.
The lyricist-director, who took retirement from directing movies to devote time on books, said the idea behind making a serial on Ghalib in 1988 was to introduce people to the poet, who is known for his way with words and emotions.
By Sangeeta Mahadani with Nisha Mukesh, AIR News, New Delhi