January 14, 2014 07:24:36 PM IST By Mansoor Khan, Glamsham Editorial
Kaifi Azmi is renowned as India's greatest poet and Bollywood film lyricist who penned the super hit patriotic song 'Kar chale hum fida jaan-o-tan sathiyoon' (HAQEEQAT) and Tum Itna kyon Muskurarae ho' (ARTH). However few may know that poet who ruled Bollywood in the 50's and 60's as the most sought after poet has also acted in a movie!
On his birth anniversary that falls on January 14, Glamsham.com pays him homage and unravels the only movie in which he acted and why he accepted the role.
Kaifi Azmi made his first and only screen presence as an actor in Saeed Akhtar Mirza's brilliant movie NASEEM produced by NFDC. The movie focused on communal harmony.
The movie dwelt with a patriotic elderly person, who shares a warm relation with his grand-daughter and tells her stories of communal harmony and brotherhood that he has witnessed during the pre-independence era and is disturbed and helpless at the outburst of communal riots in present times. As Kaifi sahab had been a fiery patriotic poet of his time hence filmmaker Saeed Akhtar Mirza was bent on casting Kaifi Azmi as he felt Kaifi sahab was the right choice to play the role. In an interview he said, ''Kaifi sahab suited the character to the tee. Hence I was bent on casting him but he refused. Nevertheless I was adamant. Though convincing him was a difficult task, yet I succeeded.''
The reason why Kaifi sahab gave in was the sensitive subject of communal harmony for which he had lived all his life. In an interview Kaifi sahab on accepting the role confessed, ''At the age of 75 when Saeed insisted on acting I refused initially but later gave a nod due to the movie's message of brotherhood. Throughout my life I supported secularism and through my poems tried to create communal harmony. ''