PAL to launch ‘Pas-e-Zindan’ award
LAHORE: Pakistan Academy of Letters (PAL) Chairman Fakhar Zaman has said that the academy will give ‘Pas-e-Zindan’ awards to all such writers who had produced literature while being in jail in dictatorial regimes.
He said this at a function on Monday at the Punjab Institute of Language, Art and Culture held in connection with two awards given to him — Hilal-e-Imtiaz by the Pakistan government and Sharomani Award on Literature by the Indian government.
“In Oct, the academy will hold an international writers’ conference on ‘Sufism and peace’ in which 80 countries will participate,” he added.
He urged cordial relations between India and Pakistan so that the people on either side could lead a prosperous life. He said the academy has translated books on mystic poets of Pakistan into eight languages. These books were available in various libraries of the world. He said the academy was reprinting the literature on resistance.
Intellectual Qazi Javed held Mr Zaman, who is also chairman of the World Punjabi Congress (WPC), in high esteem for his efforts to create a friendly atmosphere between the Punjbas on either side of the border through his struggle for peace and through his writings.
WPC Vice President Chaudhry Saeedullah said Zaman’s writings were always revolutionary. He said Zaman had been given honour across the border for his literary contributions and for the first time the prestigious Sharomani award had been given to a non-Indian writer, he added.
Writer Azhar Javed said Mr Zaman had introduced Pakistani literature the world over through the Pakistan Academy of Letters.
Actress Bahar said she joined the WPC as she was impressed by Mr Zaman. Critic Dr Saleem Akhtar said Mr Zaman had unofficially played the role of an ambassador of Pakistan to the world through his thought provoking writings.
WPC Vice Chairman Hameed Akhtar said very few writers had always stuck to their principles and Mr Zaman was one of them.
Folk singer Shaukat Ali presented a turban to Mr Zaman while a number of participants presented bouquets to him.