Friday, March 1, 2024

Munawwar Rana, renowned Urdu poet, dies at 71

Renowned Urdu poet Munawwar Rana passed away at the age of 71, succumbing to a cardiac arrest at Lucknow’s PGI Hospital after battling a prolonged illness for several months. 

Born on November 26, 1952, in Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh, Rana gained widespread recognition for his contributions to Urdu literature, particularly his ghazals. 

His poetic style, known for its accessibility, resonated with Indian audiences as he incorporated Hindi and Awadhi words while avoiding Persian and Arabic. 

One of his most famous poems, ‘Maa,’ celebrated the virtues of motherhood in the traditional ghazal form. 

Rana received a Sahitya Akademi Award in 2014 for his book ‘Shahdaba,’ which he returned a year later due to concerns over growing intolerance in the country.

Along with the Sahitya Akademi Award, Rana received various honours such as the Ameer Khusro Award, Mir Taqi Mir Award, Ghalib Award, Dr Zakir Hussain Award, and the Saraswati Samaj Award. 

His literary works have been translated into multiple languages. Spending a significant part of his life in Kolkata, Rana had a notable presence in poetic symposiums (mushairas) both in India and foreign.

Beyond his literary contributions, Rana was actively involved in the political landscape of Uttar Pradesh. 

His daughter, Sumaiya Rana is also a member of the Samajwadi Party (SP), led by Akhilesh Yadav.

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