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SYED MUSTAFA SIRAJ, famous octogenarian Bengali fiction writer and novelist died in Kolkata on 4 September after a brief illness. Born in a village in Murshidabad district of the undivided Bengal in 1930 he was a prolific writer who wrote more than 300 short stories and as many as 150 novels, including some detective ones. He wrote for children as well as adults and unlike most of his modern contemporaries who are urban-conscious, almost all his works depict rural background, people and landscape. His short stories and novels have been translated into many languages including English, Urdu, Hindi, Tamil, Dogri and others. He was honoured with Sahitya Academy Award in 1994 for his novel Aleek Manush. His body was taken from Kolkata to his native village, in accordance with his wishes, for burial on 5 September. He leaves behind his wife, two sons and two daughters.
ABDUR RASHID, noted Urdu journalist of Mumbai died of heart attack in a Mumbai suburb on 21 July at the age of 76 years. Born in Bihar Sharif city of Bihar, he was educated at Calcutta University and being associated with progressive movement of India, he was an active member of Communist Party of India for a long time. After migrating to Mumbai around 1960 he started his journalistic career with the daily Khilafat as its news editor. Shortly thereafter he started his own daily Urdu Reporter which became very popular.                                              

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-30 September 2012 on page no. 12

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