Poets and friends from across the country today paid rich tributes to celebrated Urdu poet and Jnanpith awardee Akhlaq Mohammad Khan, who passed away here on Monday.
"He was one of those rare poets who has left a permanent impact not just on Urdu poetry but also on Hindi poetry," longtime friend of Khan and poet, Gopal Das Neeraj said.
Neeraj said his demise was a great personal loss and there was now a deep void in the world of Urdu Ghazal.
Prof Abul Kalam Qasmi, former Dean, Faculty of Arts, Aligarh Muslim University said, "Urdu literature has lost its largest pillar".
76-year-old Khan, better known by his pseudonym 'Shahryar', will be buried at AMU's cemetery in the evening, family sources said.
Vijay Kumar Bajaj, another old friend of Khan, to whom the poet had dedicated many of his works, said his "last few months were spent fighting a malignant tumour in the same courageous spirit as he lived his entire life".
Khan drew national fame as a lyricist for the words he penned in films like 'Gaman', 'Umrao Jaan' and 'Anjuman'.
Born in Aonla town in Bareilly district on June 19, 1936, Khan pursued his higher education at AMU, before obtaining a PhD and joining the university's faculty in 1966.
He retired as chairman of the university's Urdu Department in 1996.
Khan was awarded the Sahitya Academy Award in Urdu for his celebrated work 'Khwab Ka Dar Band Hai'. He was awarded the country's highest literary award, the Jnanpith Award in the year 2008.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot expressed grief over the death of Khan.
"The death of Khan is a great loss to literary world of Urdu and Hindi," he said in his condolence message in Jaipur.
Gehlot said the celebrated poet would always be remembered for his remarkable contribution in Urdu literature and Hindi film industry.
Rich Tributes Paid to Urdu Poet Shahryar
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