Faiz’s struggle against capitalism showcased through performing arts

Pakistan Press Foundation

LAHORE: Speakers, poets, singers and intellectuals at the Faiz Amn Mela (Faiz Peace Festival) said that Faiz Ahmed Faiz had always struggled and fought against the capitalist-ruling-elite class of the country through his poetry, was against war hysteria and promoted peace thoughts pinning to the left wing ideology.

Faiz Amn Mela was organised on Sunday by the Faiz Amn Mela Committee in collaboration with the Punjab Arts Council, on the second day of the celebrations of the 104th birth anniversary of renowned poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz at the Open Air Theatre, Bagh-e-Jinnah

A large number of people from all walks of life including women and children came to attend the Faiz Amn Mela. The festival had three sessions. In the first session drama ‘Heer’ directed by Huma Safdar was staged by the artists. A mushaira was organised in the second session, while in the third session of the Faiz Mela, a concert was arranged in which many artists including ‘Laal’ band performed songs based on Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s lyrical poetry.

This year’s Faiz Amn Mela was dedicated to the martyrs of Army Public School Peshawar, in which 151 innocent people including children were killed by the Taliban. Addressing the festival, Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s granddaughter Salima Hashmi said this festival was organised to show solidarity with the innocent martyrs of the Peshawar attack. She said that Faiz, who struggled all his life, conveyed the message of peace and to bring change through peaceful ways; a pacifist always opposes war and conflicts. She said Faiz fought against the ruling class and proudly promoted left wing ideology. Speaking on the occasion, Awami Workers Party General Secretary Farooq Tariq said the only purpose of holding the festival was to remind people of the struggle of the left wing in Pakistan. He said that religious extremism was a greater challenge for our society, which could only be eradicated by spreading Faiz’s message and ideology.

In the first session of Faiz Mela, a street play directed by Huma Safdar was performed, which portrayed the Punjab folklore culture in a true sense, since the festival was also arranged to promote the cultures of Pakistan.

In the second session, a peace mushaira was organised in which Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s lyrical poetry was recited by poets. Poets recited variety of poetry of Faiz upon which people chanted slogans ‘Hey Faiz Bhi Zinda’ with enthusiasm. The mushaira was presided over by Aslam Gurdaspuri and moderated by Khalid Javed. Poets who presented the poems were Shafiq Ahmed, Baba Najmi, Dr Kanwal, Anjum Bhatti, Javed Qasim, DR Gulzar Bhukhari, comrade Irfan and others.

Interestingly, although India-Pakistan one-day international cricket match was the main attraction in the city, Faiz Amn Mela event attracted much crowd and a large number of people from all walks of life participated at the Open Air Theatre. In the third session, Laal band lead singer Timur Rehman, Jawad Ahmad, Adeel Barki, Anayat Abid and other artists performed and enthralled the audience.

Daily Times