Pakistani poet Fahmida Riaz passes away in Lahore

11:05 PM | 21 Nov, 2018
Pakistani poet Fahmida Riaz passes away in Lahore
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LAHORE - Noted poet and prose writer Fahmida Riaz breathed her last in the Punjab capital on Wednesday.

Riaz, a Progressive Urdu writer, poet, human rights activist and feminist of Pakistan, was born on 28 July 1945 in a literary family of Meerut, UP, of British India.

She was the author of Godaavari, Khatt-e Marmuz, and Khana e Aab O Gil, the first translation of the Masnavi of Jalaluddin Rumi from Persian into Urdu.

The author of more than 15 books on fiction and poetry always remained at the center of controversies. When Badan Dareeda, her second collection of verse, appeared, she was accused of using erotic and sensual expressions in her poetry. The themes prevalent in her verse were, until then, considered taboo for women writers. She also translated the works of Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai and Shaikh Ayaz from Sindhi to Urdu. Fahmida Riaz fled General Zia-ul Haq's religious tyranny and sought refuge in India and spent seven years there.

The poems from her collection Apna Jurm Sabit Hae reflect her homeland's experience under the dictatorship of General Zia-ul-Haq. By reputation, Riaz stands alongside Nazim Hikmet, Pablu Neruda, Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir.

She also received Al-Muftah Award at Karachi Gymkhana 2005.

She is survived by three children, one daughter and two sons, from two marriages.