From Agra to Balli Maran, Tracing the Journey of Mirza Ghalib
In this podcast, catch author Maaz Bin Bilal who decodes Ghalib’s ghazal, ‘Ye na thi humari qismat ke visaal-e-yaar hota’ for the uninitiated. 
In this podcast, catch author Maaz Bin Bilal who decodes Ghalib’s ghazal, ‘Ye na thi humari qismat ke visaal-e-yaar hota’ for the uninitiated. Photo: The Quint

From Agra to Balli Maran, Tracing the Journey of Mirza Ghalib

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(To commemorate Mirza Ghalib’s death anniversary on 15 February 1869, The Quint is republishing this story from its archives. It was originally published on 27 December 2019.)

Mirza Ghalib is to Urdu literature what Shakespeare is to English literature. His poetry has continued to find admirers even a century-and-a-half after his time.

Born in 1797 in Agra, Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib moved to Delhi where in the court of the last Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar, his talents found new heights. These heights of his literary brilliance often prod you on a deeper level and make you wonder.

‘Did Ghalib ever write about politics’, ‘how can his poems be interpreted as the literature about God?’ And most importantly, ‘Did he – the baadah-khwaar or the wine drinker – ever believe in God?’

All these questions won't be tossed away unanswered in this very special podcast – a masterclass featuring author Maaz Bin Bilal.

Maaz, who took upon himself to translate some of Ghalib’s ghazals in his book Ghazalnama – Poems from Delhi, Belfast and Urdu, decodes Ghalib’s ‘Ye na thi humari qismat ...

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