August 18 marks the birthday of eminent lyrist, filmmaker and a literary genius Gulzar. Glamsham.Com wishes him birthday greetings and discloses his poignant relation with ‘Tragedy Queen’ Meena Kumari.
tum aa gaye ho noor aa gaya hai
Nahin to charagon se lau jaa rahi thi…
Everybody is aware that legendary actress Meena Kumari shared a warm relation with Gulzar. The above heartrending verse penned by Gulzar in the song from his movie AANDHI beautifully captures the sentiments of legendary actress Meena Kumari when she must have first met the young Gulzar.
Gulzar in the early 60s was riding high thanks to his fame in the field of poetry at the Mushairas (poet conference). It was Gulzar’s this ability that fascinated Meena Kumari towards Gulzar.
Meena Kumari first met Gulzar when he was assisting distinguished filmmaker Bimal Roy and soon the two became close friends. As Meena Kumari was reeling under the stress of her traumatic marital relation with her husband Kamal Amrohi, she had sought solace in poetry and liquor. It is reported after her film shootings she would spend long hours at her house with young Gulzar and the two would discuss poetry and recite ghazals.
Recalling his relation with Meena Kumari, Gulzar once said, “Meenaji had a remarkable command over Urdu poetry. She had fine sensibility and wrote poems that poured her emotions vividly in ravishing language.”
He reminisces, “She was a great admirer of intellectual poets that’s primarily the reason why she fell in love with her husband Kamal Amrohi, who was a proficient poet and filmmaker. But due to marital discord she abandoned Kamal Sahab and lived in solitude.”
Meghna Gulzar, daughter of Gulzar, in her book ‘Because He Is’ mentions many anecdotes related to her father Gulzar’s life. In the book she mentions that Gulzar was so close to Meena Kumari. When she was on her death bed in hospital Gulzar regularly paid visit to the hospital and even took care of all her expenses.
Gulzar’s this noble gesture moved Meena Kumari so much that she handed all her dairies of poems to Gulzar and took assurance from him to publish after her demise. Gulzar lived up to the pledge and published her collection of poems as promised.
Gulzar’s fondness for Meena Kumari was not limited just to publishing her poems but the readers would also be astonished to know that Gulzar even observed the holy month of Ramzan by keeping Roza (fast) on behalf of Meena Kuamri as he had promised to her.