Urdu poet Sahir Ludhianvi’s priceless handwritten notes, poems found at scrap shop

Agencies
September 9,2019

Mumbai, Sept 9: A bunch of priceless handwritten letters, diaries, nazm, and black and white photographs of legendary Urdu poet-lyricist Sahir Ludhianvi were found at a scrap shop in Mumbai, and has been bought by an NGO for just ₹3,000 for preserving it.

Mumbai-based Film Heritage Foundation, a not-for-profit NGO, found these items recently amid a dump of newspapers and magazines at the scrap shop in Juhu and now plans to preserve and exhibit "the archives".

"The diaries found have details of his daily routines like where he would be going for song recording and other personal life happenings. Then there are several poems and notes. The notes are related to his publishing house 'Parchaian'," Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, the founding-director of Film Heritage Foundation, told PTI.

"There are letters addressed to him from prominent people of the time like music composer Ravi, his friend and poet Harbans. Some of the letters are in English, and some in Urdu. Rest all work is in Urdu," he said.

Then there are photographs of Sahir — some individual, some with his sisters and friends and some of his home in Punjab. The foundation's experts are analyzing the poems and finding out which are the ones that have not got published, he said.

"This is reminiscent of a scene from Guru Dutt's 'Pyaasa' where the protagonist's poems and writings are found at a scrap shop," he said.

Sahir had written songs for the 1957 film, now considered a cult classic. Several situations in the film, whose protagonist played by Dutt too was a poet, were based on Sahir's life.

Dungarpur said his foundation had purchased the entire collection of Sahir's items for ₹3,000, stressing how the invaluable work of the master poet had landed in a quaint scrap shop in a Mumbai bylane.

"Our team is always on the lookout for such film-related works. We once found original film reel of Guru Dutt's 'Bharosa' and actress Sadhna's items in similar condition and have restored them," he said.

"Afsos hota in cheezon ko aisi haalat mein dekh ke (it is saddening to find such articles in this condition). But we are happy that we are able to find and preserve them," he added.

The Film Heritage Foundation now hopes to restore these archival items, digitize the documents and preserve them.

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With spike of 37,148 cases, India's COVID-19 tally reaches 11,55,191

News Network
July 21,2020

New Delhi, Jul 21: With a spike of 37,148 cases and 587 deaths reported in India in the last 24 hours, the total number of COVID-19 cases stands at 11,55,191, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The total number of cases include 4,02,529 active cases, 7,24,578 cured/discharged/migrated and 28,084 deaths, the ministry informed.

Maharashtra remains the worst affected state with 3,18,695 cases and 12,030 deaths.
The second worst-hit state, Tamil Nadu has reported 1,75,678 COVID-19 cases so far while Delhi has reported 1,23,747 cases, according to the Health Ministry.

Meanwhile, as per the information provided by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 1,43,81,303 samples have been tested for COVID-19 up to July 20. Of these 3,33,395 were tested yesterday.

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Karnataka’s covid-19 tally crosses 2-lakh mark

coastaldigest.com news network
August 13,2020

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Bengaluru, Aug 13: Karnataka's COVID-19 count crossed the grim milestone of 2-lakh mark today. 

At least 6,706 people tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours. With this, the total number of coronavirus patients in the state increased to 2,03,200. 

There were 78,337 active coronavirus cases in the country. The deadly virus claimed 103 lives in the last 24 hours, bringing the fatalities in the southern state to 3,613, according to the state health bulletin. Most of these patients had a history of Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) or Influenza-like illness (ILI).

The COVID-19 recovery rate improved in the last few days. Over 8,500 COVID-19 patients were cured in the last 24 hours. More than 1.21 lakh patients were recovered from the infection since the outbreak.

Bengaluru urban district had the most number of coroanvirus patients. Over 81,000 people tested positive for the virus since the outbreak.

The southern state also improved its testing facilities over the months. At least 55,999 samples were tested in the last 24 hours. Karnataka tested 18,82,316 samples since the pandemic.

Former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah recovered from coronavirus infection on Wednesday. He was also discharged from the hospital. "Siddaramaiah has been discharged after the reports of second tests also came out negative," the statement said. The Congress leader thanked doctors and medical staff at the Manipal hospital for their treatment.

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85-year-old Shantabai Pawar displays `lathi-kathi' skills on Pune streets, video goes viral

Agencies
July 24,2020

Pune, Jul 24: Agile and dexterous, 85-year-old Shantabai Pawar wields sticks with absolute ease as she displays 'lathi-kathi' on the streets of Pune.

A video of her, displaying her skills in the Indian martial art form for livelihood, has gone viral on social media.

Pawar told media persons that she learnt the art form when she was only eight and has been practising it since then. The ancient martial art s believed to be linked to Dombari community, a nomadic tribe in Maharashtra.

"I have been pursuing the art of lathi-kathi since I was eight. I have never left it. It is part of me and it is an honour to practice it. My father taught me this. He taught me to work hard," Pawar told media persons.

In the video, the sari-clad octogenarian takes a warrior-like stride and effortlessly rotates a stick several times in a second in her hand and around her head and then does it with two sticks together with a smile on her face. She also tosses a stick in the air and catches it with ease.

The assembled gathering is impressed and enthused.

"People come and say, 'Well done Daadi!' I practice it to earn money for my children and grandchildren," she said.

Pawar leaves her home in the morning in the conditions created by coronavirus and performs the art form on roads and streets.

"I go to various areas to perform the art form and people give money," she said.

The artiste also uses thali and stick to gather the attention of people as most of them are indoors due to conditions created by COVID-19.

Senior citizens have been advised against venturing out due to their greater susceptibility to coronavirus but Pawar said she is not afraid to step out.

"People do advise me to not go out due to fear of COVID-19 but I am not scared. Whenever I step out, I pray to my God and he has kept me safe so far," she said.

Aishwarya Kale, a dancer and the person who uploaded the video on social media, said that it is "only an artist who can understand what help another artist needs".

"I was in that area shopping for some items and it was then I saw her performing and thought that I should film her and upload her video on social media. But I never thought that the video would go viral and she would receive financial help not just from people in the country but overseas as well," Kale told media persons.

"She is now getting honour for her craft that she couldn't get in the last 85 years. I feel good that through my small video, her art form has become viral," she added. 

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