31 July 2011

Philatelic Tributes to Munshi Prem Chand and Mohd Rafi ..


Pewm Chand  image

Today is Birth anniversary of Munshi Prem Chand, greatest writer of  Hindi – Urdu literature and Death anniversary of Mohd Rafi, finest singer Indian Cinema . Philatelic Tributes to great legends of Literature and Music.

Munshi Premchand  (July 31, 1880 – October 8, 1936) was a famous writer of modern Hindi-Urdu literature. He is generally recognized in India as the foremost Hindi-Urdu writer of the early twentieth century. He wrote novels, stories and dramas. He is known as "Upanyas Samrat" which means a great emperor among novel writers.

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His real name was Dhanpat Rai but he is famous with his pen name of Premchand or Munshi Premchand. He was born in Pandepur , a village near Banaras (now Varanasi). His early education was in a madarasa under a Maulavi, where he learnt Urdu. In 1919, while he was a teacher at Gorakhpur, he passed his B.A., with English, Persian and History.

He pioneered the new art form - fiction with a social purpose. He wrote of the life around him and made his readers aware of the problems of the urban middle-class and the country's villages and their problems. He supplemented Gandhiji's work in the political and social fields by adopting his revolutionary ideas as themes for his literary writings. Premchand was a prolific writer.

Premchand wrote about three hundred short stories and fourteen novels, as well as many essays and letters, plays and translations. Many of Premchand's stories have themselves been translated into English and Russian.

Godaan (The Gift of a Cow), his last novel, is considered one of the finest Hindi novels. The protagonist, Hori, a poor peasant, desperately longs for a cow, a symbol of wealth and prestige in rural India. The story depicts the human beings' deep-rooted beliefs, and their ability to survive and uphold these beliefs despite great misery

In Kafan (Shroud), a poor man collects money for the funeral rites of his dead wife, but spends it on food and drink.

Premchand died in 1936 and has since been studied both in India and abroad as one of the greatest writers of the century.Three of his novels have been made into films.

Mohammed Rafi


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Philatelic Tribute to the Legendary Indian Playback Singer, Mohammed Rafi  whose rich melodious voice,  attract the older and the newer generations day by day.

Mohd Rafi was one  the most versatile singers of Hindi Cinema. He was born at Kotla Sultan Singh, a village near Amritsar in Punjab. Rafi, whose nickname was Pheeko, started singing by imitating chants of a fakir in his village. . Rafi learnt classical music from Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Ustad Abdul Wahid Khan, Pandit Jiwanlal Matto and Firoze Nizami.

Rafi's first public performance came at the age of 13, when he was allowed to sing at a concert in Lahore featuring K. L. Saigal. In 1941, Rafi, under Shyam Sunder, made his debut in Lahore as a playback singer in the duet "Soniye nee, Heeriye nee" with Zeenat Begum in the Punjabi film Gul Baloch (the film was released in 1944). In that same year, Rafi was invited by All India Radio Lahore station to sing for them. He made his professional debut in the Shyam Sunder-directed 1941 film Gul Baloch and the Bombay film, Gaon Ki Gauri, the following year.

Rafi also did brief roles in movies like Laila-Majnu (1945) and Jugnu. In Laila-Majnu, he was seen singing ‘tera jalwa’ as a part of the chorus.In a career spanning about 40 years, Rafi sang over 26,000 film songs. His songs ranged from classical numbers to patriotic songs, sad lamentations to highly romantic numbers, qawwalis to ghazals and bhajans, and from slow melancholic tunes to fast and melodious fun filled songs. He sang in many Indian languages.


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