The Interiod Designer

The Interiod Designer

Kaifi aur Main – A Real Life Romance

March 13, 2018
Contributor - Harmohan Singh Walia

Harmohan Singh Walia or Harry Walia as he is popularly known was an Olympic Torchbearer in Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. He graduated as a Mechanical Engineer from Guru Nanak Engineering College, Ludhiana in 1973 and post graduated as an Industrial Engineer from Thaper University Patiala in 1987.

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Photo Credit- Vishaal from Evergreen Memories

Who could better present the love story of the revolutionary Urdu poet Kaifi Azmi and his wife Shaukat than their daughter Shabana Azmi and son-in-law Javed Aktar?

On 9th March 2018 Sydney audience witnessed “Kaifi aur Main”- a conceptualised story about Kaifi and his 55-year-old romance with Shaukat – right from the time she met him as a young girl, till their last day together. The story is set amidst the backdrop of a political and rebellious pre-partition of India and summarizes everything – a sprint of romance, humour and grief – or his progressive social ideas.

This theatrical collage is a compilation of Shaukat’s interaction with Kaifi, from her book ‘Yaad Ki Rehguzaar’, along with portions from various interviews of Kaifi, which have been strung together by Javed Akhtar and directed by Ramesh Talwar. The story is interwoven with ghazals that are complemented with the beautiful music that includes melancholic violins and rhythmic tabla. The ghazals were sung by Jaswinder Singh.

When the words, ‘Jannat ek aur hai jo mard ke pehlu mein nahin, uski aazaad ravish par hi machalna hai tujhe, uth meri jaan, mere saath hi chalna hai tujhe,’ from one of his best poems Aurat are recited, you’re going to applaud. Shaukat’s role was recited by Shabana Azmi and Kaifi Azmi’s role was recited by Javed Akhtar.

The Sydney siders did not miss the opportunity to mingle with the legends and show their talent. Aman preet made a sketch of Javed Sahib which surely amazed him.

Organisers Manju Mittal and Ruchi Bansal did an incredible for bringing Kaifi aur Main downunder- the play which has performed over 100 shows to the standing ovations from the audiences across various cities nationally & internationally like New York, New Jersey, Boston, Detroit, Chicago, Houston, SF, LA, Atlanta, Washington DC, Toronto, London, Dubai, Muscat, Singapore, Australia etc.

From left: Ruchi Bansal and Manju Mittal



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