Obaidullah Baig: a genius with multifarious branches of knowledge
ISLAMABAD: Iftikhar Arif, former chairman of Academy of Letters, said on Wednesday that late Obaidullah Baig was a gem of multifarious branches of knowledge in addition to being a writer, calligrapher, broadcaster, producer and expert in cooking.
Iftikhar was addressing the memorial reference on Obaidullah Baig organised by the Academy of Letters here on Wednesday. Agha Nasir was the chief guest on this occasion.
Iftikhar said that Baig was a big personality for the country as well as for him because of the 50-year association. He recalled Afzal Siddiqui and Baig’s Radio Pakistan days to translate news for him so that he was also paid Rs10 in addition to the amount for news reading. He said that despite meagre income, he did not let anybody else pay for the lunches, dinners they did together and taxi fare they travelled together.
Iftikhar Arif disclosed that Qudratullah Shahab was sent to investigate if any cheating took place in ‘Kasauty’. He said that Baig had done ‘Dars-e-Nizami’ also and could easily translate into Arabic and Persian. He lamented that none of the episodes of the programme is available anywhere in archive.
Agha Nasir said that Baig had not formal education, but was well read, translated books and wrote novels. He said that TV shot him into prominence. ‘Sailani’ was another marvellous programme that introduced cultures of all the regions to the viewers, he said recalling his documentaries and qualities as broadcaster also.
Baig’s friend Nasir Malik said that Baig was fond of ‘maash ki daal’ and ‘phulkaas’ prepared by his sister-in-law Salma who later became Baig’s wife.Once he refused to have dinner of an AC, which was arranged by an SHO because it, according to him, was not ‘halal’. He said that Obaidullah was fond of hunting and master in cooking hunted animals and birds.