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Malik Ram
Writer
--: Biography of Malik Ram :--

 

Malik Ram Baveja or Malik Ram  was a renowned Urdu, Persian and Arabic scholar. His monumental work “Tazkirah-e-Muasireen” was awarded the 1983 Sahitya Akademi Award.
 
Malik Ram   was born on 22 December 1906 in Phalia, Punjab. He was educated at Government College, Lahore. Between 1931 and 1937 Malik Ram worked as a journalist. At first he was the Joint-Editor of the Lahore monthly literary journal Nairang-i-Khayal and subsequently its Editor when Hakim Yusuf Hassan was the Chief Editor  At the same time, Malik Ram was also the de facto editor of the Lahore weekly Arya Gazette when its official editor, Yogendra Pal Vidyarthi, became terminally ill. Later, from January 1936 until June 1936, when it ceased publication, Malik Ram was an assistant editor of the Lahore daily newspaper Bharat Mata then edited by Lala Ram Prashad.
 
From 1939 until 1965, Malik Ram was in the Indian Foreign Service which gave him the opportunity to travel to many countries and to study oriental texts and manuscripts lodged in their archives, libraries and museums. After retiring from Government service, he joined India's National Academy of Letters, the Sahitya Akademi, in New Delhi, where he was in charge of its Urdu section and also edited the complete works of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.  During this period he was also actively associated with Ilmi Majlis, Delhi, as the Editor of the Urdu quarterly literary review “Tahreer”.
 
Shortly before he died, Malik Ram donated his entire library of books and manuscripts to the Jamia Hamdard University Library in Delhi.  He died on 16 April 1993.
 
Malik Ram devoted much of his life to the study of the famous Urdu and Persian poet Asadullah Khan Ghalib. He was fascinated by Urdu literature and Mirza Ghalib. He edited Ghalib’s works - “Sabd-e-Chin”, “Diwan-e-Ghalib”, “Gul-e-Raana” and “Khutoot-e-Ghalib” - and, at the age of 31, he presented his own research on Ghalib’s life and works in “Zikr-e-Ghalib” which was first published in 1938. This book prompted Kausar Chandpuri (1904–1990)  the Urdu novelist, short-story writer and critic, to write “Jahan-e-Ghalib” presenting the dark side of Ghalib. "Zikr-e-Ghalib", the book with which Malik Ram established his reputation and fame as an authority on Ghalib, ran into five editions in his lifetime. The comprehensively revised fifth edition was published in 1976 and it remains an authoritative work on the poet.
 
Malik Ram's "Mirza Ghalib" in English, an introduction to Ghalib, was first published in 1968 by the National Book Trust, India and has been re-issued regularly. It has also been translated into many languages.
 
“Talamiza-e-Ghalib” was published in 1958 and records the biographical details and samples of poetical works of 146 disciples of Ghalib. A revised and enlarged edition was published in 1984.
 
Malik Ram was instrumental in organising the Ghalib Centenary celebrations of 1969. He also wrote two special articles in English (Ghalib: Man and Poet and The Works of Ghalib ) on this occasion which were published by the Press Information Bureau of the Government of India and released to the international press. Malik Ram also published a new edition of Diwan-e-Ghalib in 1969 to coincide with the poet's centenary.
 
In step with the trend set by Maulana Syed Sulaiman Nadvi of “Maarif” Malik Ram popularised obituary-writing (Tazkirahs). This resulted in the eventual publication of “Tazkirah-e-Muasireen” which, in four volumes, enlists the lives and works of over 200 writers who died between 1967 and 1977. This work received the 1983 Sahitya Akademi Urdu Award.
 
However, Malik Ram did not ignore the then living Urdu writers, as is reflected by the publication in 1977 of his book “Zia Fatehabadi Shakhs aur Shair  This work presents a detailed appraisal of the life and works of the renowned Urdu poet Mehr Lal Soni Zia Fatehabadi, carried out under Malik Ram’s supervision and guidance, and is considered a valuable addition to Urdu literary criticism. In 1988, he published “Nazre Mukhtar” which included his article on Mukhtaruddin Ahmad "Arzoo".  Malik Ram likewise edited and published “Nazre Zaidi”, “Nazre Hameed” and “Nazre Arshi”.
 
Malik Ram's main works on a variety of subjects, with dates of publication, are listed on the Open Library website.
 
From 1983 to 1987, Malik Ram was the President of the long-established and influential 'Anjuman Taraqqi Urdu (Hind)' - the autonomous body concerned with all matters relating to the promotion of Urdu, which has over 600 branches in India.
 
Since Mukhtaruddin Ahmad "Arzoo"   wrote his detailed article on Malik Ram in the “Shakhsiat Number” of “Nuqoosh”, Lahore, several major works on Malik Ram's literary career have been published.
“Malik Ram - Ek Mutaalah” (Malik Ram - A Study) was published in 1986 and edited by the prolific Urdu writer and poet Ali Jawad Zaidi, who has also written the foreword. This volume consists of contributions from prominent Urdu scholars, conversant with different aspects of Malik Ram's writings, who have attempted to evaluate his work in some detail.
 
Earlier in 1972, Ali Jawad Zaidi had compiled and edited the “Malik Ram Felicitation Volume" in which he describes Malik Ram as one of the four pillars of Urdu research. The two companion felicitation volumes in Urdu titled "Armaghan-i Malik" were compiled and edited by Gopi Chand Narang. The three books were published to commemorate Malik Ram's 65th birthday, in appreciation of his erudition, scholastic versatility and manifold contributions to Urdu, Islamic and oriental literature, and were presented to him by V.V. Giri, the President of India. at a reception he gave in Malik Ram's honour at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi in April 1972.
 
Jagan Nath Azad, the distinguished Urdu poet, who wrote the first national anthem of Pakistan and was an authority on Iqbal, had this to say about Malik Ram in his review of the award-winning Tazkirah-i-Muasireen:
 
Malik Ram, an internationally-known authority on Ghalib, is a versatile man of letters. A legend in his own life-time, he has a remarkable capability to deal with many subjects. He is, at the same time, an essayist, a biographer, a memoir-writer, a literary critic, a research scholar as also an authority on Islamic literature and culture.
 
"Tazkirah-i-Muasireen" is a work of encyclopaedic nature..
 
Two other publications in Urdu dwell on the life and works of Malik Ram, as seen by contemporary figures from the world of academia and by eminent Urdu writers of the day: Malik Nama (1987) edited by Bashir Hussain Zaidi and Malik Ram published by the Ghalib Institute in New Delhi, which also contains the text of tributes paid to Malik Ram at a function hosted by the Ghalib Institute in 1991, to celebrate his life in his 85th year. Malik Ram died aged 86.
 
Malik Ram, Qazi Abdul Wadood (1896–1984)   and Imtiyaz Ali Khan "Arshi" (1904–81)   were the three leading Urdu research scholars for over five decades during the 20th century. All three shunned the limelight, regarding their research activities as a pleasurable, exciting and rewarding pursuit. Individually and collectively, they had established new benchmarks for Urdu literary research. Acknowledging their achievements in this field, the Government of India sponsored National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language states:
 
"Urdu Historical Background - Progressive Writing"
 
The great trio, Qazi Abdul Wadood, Malik Ram and Imtiyaz Ali "Arshi", will be known not only for their research on Ghalib but also for giving our research a new depth and modern methodology. Accurate fixation of periods and dates is also one of their achievements.   (2.81)
 
To mark the first anniversary of his death, two Urdu monthly literary journals, Qaumi Zaban in Karachi and Aaj Kal in New Delhi, devoted their April 1994 editions respectively to Malik Ram and his contribution to Urdu and Islamic literature. Some writers, who had known Malik Ram personally, have added hitherto unpublished information about him in both journals. The "Malik Ram Number" as the Qaumi Zaban edition was called, and the Aaj Kal special issue also carried different versions of an article by M. Habib Khan, one of the very few people from the literary world, who was able to visit Malik Ram in the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital where he died. Habib Khan has written a moving account of the last months of Malik Ram's life and of their last meeting.
 
In 1996, the Ghalib Academy in New Delhi published "Ghalib Shanas Malik Ram" (Ghalib Scholar Malik Ram) by Gian Chand Jain, the noted Urdu writer, who received the 1982 Sahitya Akademi Urdu Award.[7] In this work, Jain recalls and examines Malik Ram's lifetime research on Ghalib and reflects on his literary legacy. This volume complements an earlier work published in 1975 by Shahid Azmi entitled "Urdu Tahqiq aur Malik Ram" (Urdu Research and Malik Ram ) one of the earliest books written about Malik Ram's contribution to Urdu research. 
 
In 2010, Muhammad Arshad published "Malik Ram: Hayat aur Karname" ( Malik Ram: Life and Works ) in Aligarh, India. In this volume, Malik Ram, the research scholar, has himself become the subject of research.
 
  Literary Awards
 
Malik Ram received his first ever literary prize, a wrist-watch, for his essay in Urdu on 'Religion and Reason' which he wrote for a literary competition in 1925 in his student days. This award, suggests Ali Jawad Zaidi in Armaghan-i Malik always meant a lot to him.
 
Some significant Urdu Literary Awards ( listed in Malik Ram - Ek Mutaalah edited by Ali Jawad Zaidi) :
 
 
Uttar Pradesh Government: for Gul-e-Raana (1971)
 
Uttar Pradesh Urdu Academy, Lucknow: for Tazkirah-e-Muasireen - Volume 1 (1973)
 
Uttar Pradesh Urdu Academy, Lucknow: for Woh Surten Ilahi (1974)
 
Sahitya Kala Parishad, Delhi: Urdu Award (1975)
 
Bihar Urdu Academy, Patna: for Tazkirah-e-Muasireen - Volume 2 (1975)
 
Ghalib Institute, New Delhi: Ghalib Award (1976)
 
Mir Academy, Lucknow: Imtiyaz-e Mir Award (1977)
 
Mir Academy, Lucknow: Iftikhar-e Mir Award (1981)
 
Uttar Pradesh Urdu Academy, Lucknow: for Tazkirah-e-Muasireen - Volume 4 (1982)
 
Sahitya Akademi (National Academy of Letters) New Delhi: Urdu Award for Tazkirah-e-Muasireen - Volume 4 (1983)
 
Urdu Academy, Delhi: for Talamiza-e-Ghalib (1984)
 
Bihar Urdu Academy, Patna: Services to Urdu Literature (1984/65)
 
Dr Zakir Hussain Urdu Prize: Urdu Literature and Research (1987)
 
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
 
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