POET OF HUMANITY: Life and Works of Anand Narain Mulla
Anand Narain Mulla is undeniably an important poet of Urdu. The book critiques his poetry whilst appraising his works of prose. Mulla defies categorisation withinwhich most Urdu poets are usually classified. He does not belong to the traditional poets who cling to poetic traditions that had their sway in the nineteenth century. Although many of his poems thematically resonate the kind of poetry popularised by most of the progressives and the prominent critics have also counted him as a progressive poet, in his own estimation he demurs to be exemplified as the poet having correlation with the Progressive Writers Association. Altogether, he has been a bitter critic of the type of poetry forked out by the ostensible modern school. Mulla has been a class in himself who has written insightful poems using all forms and styles which are in existence in Urdu. So far as his ideological standpoint is concerned he venerates all the salubrious, optimistic and positive values which are the characteristics of a humane society.
The overriding theme in the poetry and prose of Mulla is humanism. In quite a few of his poems, ghazals and essays, he openly scoffs at the divisive standards that are prescribed by almost all religions. Instead he uphold humanity as the core value that alone can tie up all the human beings together and as a consequence dispense with almost all the tribulations that exasperate our existence. Human values are cherished by almost all the Urdu poets but for Mulla humanity is an article of faith on which he never compromises. The book encompasses a detailed analysis of Mulla’s works of poetry and prose.
Zaheer Ali is a Mumbai-based academician, writer and social activist. Starting his career as a Research Investigator in a projecton socio-political consciousness among the Muslims in India undertaken by the Centre for the Study of Developing Society, Delhi, he worked for a while with a monthly magazine, Secular Democracy in New Delhi. Subsequently, he began teaching Political Science, first in Aurangabad and later in Mumbai. Presently, he heads Centre for Promotion of Democracy and Secularism (CPDS). He is a writer of repute and thus far has more than a dozen books to his credit. His other books include Off the Spotlight, Secularism and Its Indian Version, Reading History (ed.), Talmihat-e Faiz,Mata-e Nazar, What Ails Indian Muslims (ed.), Secularism under Siege: Revisiting the Indian Secular State (ed.), Khilafat in History and Indian Politics, Romancing with Revolution: Life and Works of Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Communities as Vote Banks: Elections in India etc.