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Published in the 1-15 Feb 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition


M RAFEEQUE AHMAD, president of the Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO) has been nominated chairman of the Foreign Trade Committee of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) for three years. He has also been elected to the FICCI’s Executive Committee.

PROF SEEMA JAWED of Women’s College, Aligarh Muslim University has been appointed chairperson of the Department of Fine Arts for a term of three years. She succeeds Prof Ashfaq M Rizvi. Seema Jawed has also been serving as OSD of Girls High School of AMU. 

PROF MAHR AZIZ, Head of the pathology department of JN Medical College, Aligarh Muslim University and KHWAJA IFTIKHAR, principal of Senior Secondary School (Boys) have been appointed members of the university court for three years. They succeed Prof A Iraqi and Prof. Shamim Idris respectively.

It was a dream come true for the 132-year-old RAHIM KHAN or Habib Miyan, as he is fondly called who went on Haj on December 27. Believed to be one of the oldest man of the world, this fragile centurion wished that he visited the holy city of Makkah. In an interview to CNN, he had expressed his desire to go on Haj. An Atlanta-based couple who watched the programme offered to support his visit. But it did not happen. Later two Pakistanis, residing in London and New York came to his help.

Lucknow University conferred a doctorate degree on ATHAR HABIB NADWI for his research on Arabic poetry of Libya. Son of noted scholar Maulana Habib Iman Nadwi Azhari, Athar Habib completed his thesis under the supervision of Dr Shabbir Ahmad. 

SYED SHAHABUDDIN, president of the All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat has once again been elected president for a two year period. Shahabuddin later appointed MAULANA MUHAMMAD SHAFI MOONIS as vice-president and Dr ZAFARUL ISLAM KHAN, editor of The Milli Gazette and EJAZ AHMED ASLAM , editor of Radiance, as general secretaries. Appointment of a 20-member executive body was also made. 

Former Indian cricket captain MANSUR ALI KHAN PATAUDI got a breather after the Delhi High Court’s directive to the Centre for not executing the eviction order to ask Pataudi to vacate his government bungalow at 1, K Kamaraj Marg. Justice Vijendra Jain has asked Pataudi to file an undertaking within four weeks and has asked the urban development ministry to allow him (Pataudi) to retain his government residence till April 30. The bungalow was allotted to the royal Pataudi family 53 years ago when Mansur’s father was appointed OSD in the external affairs ministry in 1950. After his death in 1951, his wife, the Begum of Bhopal was allowed to retain the bungalow considering the family status. Pataudi was also permitted to keep possession of the house on the same ground.

PROF NOOR MUHAMMAD of the Department of Sociology and Social Work, Aligarh Muslim University has been appointed Head of the department on seniority basis while PROF KHALIDUZZMAN KHAN has been made Head of the medicine department of Ajmal Khan Tibbiya College, each for a three year term.

IRSHAD KAMIL has composed the song for Chameli, a film released recently with the lead role of Kareena Kapoor. His songs sound as sweet as the Chameli in Kareena. Though written in Hindi these songs have the taste of Urdu and Punjabi. Hence people see a young Gulzar and Javed AKhtar in Irshad. Belonging to Chandigarh, Irshad holds a PhD in Hindi poetry. He has been associated with English journalism and has a sharp understanding of literature and society. Brought to Mumbai by producer Lekh Tandon, Irshad was given the opportunity by musician Sandesh Shandilya. His philosophy is “We should work with honesty as every one likes good work.” If he sticks to his philosophy the day is not far when he will be on all directors’ demand.

Besides movie, the theatre is a synonym of NASEERUDDIN SHAH. ‘I had rather preferred to die if had not become an actor, I am born to be an actor,’ he says. He loves film and drama equally. Being an actor is a life long commitment and one must have patience and perseverance if one wants to be an actor. Enter in one’s heart and mind to whom you want to represent. This is an art. About the play Mahatma vs. Gandhi, he says, it was the most challenging. He had to rehearse hard to inculcate historic character of Bapu. I had to perceive and visualize the great character in my mind, his pitch of sound and his image in public, says Naseeruddin. Now he wants to play The Prophet, a famous book written by Lebanese artist Khalil Gibran. He also wants to play on the writings of Indian writers. He very much appreciates the stories written by Ismat Chughtai. But he wants his children to opt other profession that intellectually be more in demand and praiseworthy.

Now watch Bollywood’s favourite ‘fun’ hero SAIF ALI KHAN in his bratty image in EK Hasina Thi. About his films like Dil Chahta Hai, Kal Ho Naa Ho and LoC Kargil, he says that the films have brought acclaim but not better work. So he says he has become much more choosy about his work. In EK Hasina Thi, he is playing a negative shade for the first time. But he says it is to him the most interesting film that he has done so far and is eager to know how it is received. About his character in the film he says it is like someone who won’t harm you but won’t go out of the way to help you either. This is the most dynamic part he has ever played. During the shooting of much acclaimed LoC Kargil he had to go through minus 20 degrees temperature. It was really scary, he said. Despite his ball rolling on and on he insists he would rather be humble and to him, it is important to respect one’s competition. One gains respect only when one gives it to others.

King Khan. Who is it? Of course, SRK-SHAH RUKH KHAN. Having non-filmy background, Shah Rukh is the superstar of the Indian film industry, all in just 13 years. He says that he has existed at a higher position only because of his overseas position. The actor’s latest release Kal Ho Naa Ho has already crossed the total collection of Koi Mil Gaya in the US. In the fist weekend KHNH did business of about $1million and is expected to cross $1.4 million in the succeeding weekend. Truly, he is an international crowd puller. Shekhar Kapur maintains that among the Indian celebrities, Shah Rukh, Amitabh Bachchan and Aamir Khan were crossover potentials.

SHABANA AZAMI is genetically incapable of relaxing, says her husband Javed Aktar, a poet-lyricist. The day she was promoting her latest film, Tahzeeb, she was also seen participating in a demonstration against bonded labour in the capital. The veteran actress and social activist is cherished among different strata of society. She says that the kind of characters she has portrayed in films probably makes it easier for her to gain acceptance among the people she works for. The actress has also a singer in her. In Sai Paranjpe’s Saaz she played a singer. In Tahzeeb, she plays Rukhsana, a singer. Presently, she is learning madly carnatic music for Morning Raga, a film being directed by playwright Mahesh Dattani. She has sung in the past in Muzaffar Ali’s film Anjuman. Probably, she would play a singer for a proposed film based on the legendary Begum Akhtar. Escape her Gulel target, a forthcoming film in which she is assisting director Aparna Sen.

The 10 engineering Aditya Birla scholars chosen for 2003 included UZMA HUSSAIN from BITS, Pilani. She had earlier distinguished herself by securing 2nd state rank (Assam) in 12th board & 6th state rank (Assam) in 10th board.

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