17-year-old Kashmiri youth wins Urdu Cultural Academy award



By NewsGram Staff Writer

Munawar Ali Hussainy, a 17-year-old poet from Jammu and Kashmir, has been named ‘Poet of the Year’ for 2014 by the National Urdu Cultural Academy in New Delhi.

Speaking to IANS over phone, Hussainy – who was awarded for his poem “Zulm Ka Mara” – said the academy every year invites five poems from a poet to be adjudged by a jury.

“I submitted my best three poems. Although I started reading ‘Diwan-i-Ghalib’ since I was in primary school, I only recently started understanding the legendary Urdu poet”, said Hussainy.

“The 20-stanza poem describes the life and death of children across the Muslim world. The poem sketches the conflict-hit life in Jammu and Kashmir, Palestine, Myanmar and Syria”, Hussiany said.

Hussainy also writes short stories in English, but is confused about how to get his works published.

“I have written a good number of poems now, but I don’t know how to get them published,” he said.

Asked about his mentors, he said: “Allama Iqbal is my ‘roohaani peer’ (spiritual guide) and Pakistan’s Mohsin Naqvi has been my great inspiration.”

Hussainy said he has two ‘guides’ on social network Facebook who helped him improve his poetic skills, but he has never met them.

“I have two Facebook friends who have always been suggesting corrections in my writings and if I have won any award, a share of credit goes to them as well.”

Besides writing poems, Hussainy has also cracked the Jammu and Kashmir Combined Entrance Test (JK-CET).