Kaleem Ajiz speaks about poetic career
Kaleem Ajiz, or Kaleem Ahmad, the Indian veteran poet was recently in the Kingdom to perform Umrah. His face and long poetic career is quite familiar to Urdu poetry lovers.
The 90-year-old poet was born in 1924, in Telhara, Bihar in an educated family of landlords.
In his paternal and maternal family, Ajiz’s family had no poets. His outstanding poetic career started before partition.
In a communal massacre in his area most of his family members were killed. This pain became a perennial spring for him. Instead of making him sick his grief made him a better human being who could not even hate people who killed his whole family.
The poet obtained his PhD from Patna University in 1965. His topic was the evolution of Urdu poetry in Bihar.
Ajiz never joined any literary or political movement, but was immensely successful in the cultural arena. He had the ability to steal the limelight of the Mushairah even in the presence of great poets of the 20th century like Raghupati Sahai Firaq.
Ajiz’s poetry collection “Jub Fasle Baharan Aai Thi (When the spring arrived)” has Firaq’s remarks on the back page:
“I think I was lucky that I had a chance to see Kalim Ajiz reciting his poetry…when I heard his recitation I felt extreme love for his poetry that created a harmony, love and unbearable happiness in me.”
Firaq Gorakhpuri, one of the greatest Urdu poets of his times, was not exaggerating or joking when he admired Ajiz’s poetry. His acceptance was laced with wonder and love.
Ajiz, who is also an educationist, a poet, and possess a suave personality, has witnessed the evolution of human and cultural values. His poetry attracts common people because it’s simple and full of ethos. For his distinguished services in the field of poetry, he was awarded Padma Shri by the Indian government.
Only literary critics and the time can decide his place among great Urdu poets but his poetry is tell-tale of his life. This candle lightens the oppressed hearts and shall continue enlightening the dark environment.