Roshandaan literally means “that which has/admits light” or “ventilator”.This is also the title of the book written by renowned writer Mr. Javed Siddiqui. This book, which is a collection of short stories written in the form of life sketches, was the topic of discussion at mehfil@Prithvi this month.
The crowd trickled in slowly as the panel of readers geared up to read excerpts from the various stories. We had an enthusiastic panel at the mehfil including Javed Siddiqui Saab , Sama Zaidi
Apa, Atul Tiwari Saab, Saadiya Siddiqui, Asad Hussain, Lubna Salim, Suhail Warsi, Ilyas Shauki Saab And Salim Arif Saab.
The evening commenced with a magnificent introduction of the book by the author himself Javed Siddiqui Saab. He explained that the reason he has written these pen sketches is that these characters have been an integral part his life and their eccentricities, their quirkiness and their distinct behavior have stayed with him over the years. He believes these stories were aching to come out and not perish with time. He mentioned the style of writing is called ‘Khaka Nigarey’.
Ilyas Shuaki Saab explained in brief the meaning of ‘Khaka Nigarey’ which means life sketches. It is written in a manner in which the reader can almost feel the presence of the character the writer is trying to express.
After this background the first short story to be read was titled ‘Mogrey ke baalion wali’. Saadiya Siddiqui and Asad Hussain read this story. The fluency with which they read it made the main character Sultana Jaffery come alive for the audience.
Lubna Salim read the next story. This story was titled “Ek Bnajara” after which we called for an interval.
We commenced the second half with Shama Apa reading a story called “ Mama aur Bajiya” followed by Suhail reading “ Ek Hare Hue Lashkar Ka Sipahi”. The last story to be read was a story of Abrar Alvi called “ Guruji” by Atul Tiwari Saab.
We had already crossed the stipulated time but the audience were so enthralled that we decided to play an half an hour film called “ Hajiani” which was based on one of the life sketches. The audience was so mesmerized by the evening that they almost lost indication of the time.
This has been our longest mehfil and it was heartwarming to see a packed audience as the film ended.
Next month there will be another mehfil, there will another topic and there will be more tales and stories to discuss, with that promise we concluded this chapter.
The book Roshandaan will be available in the Hindi script shortly.