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On January 14, 2019, which marked the birth centenary of Kaifi Azmi, commenced a year-long tribute to the legendary poet and lyricist. After an array of mushairas, plays and seminars, the tribute came to a close on January 14, 2020, with the special screening of Kaifi's son, Baba Azmi's first directorial effort, the Hindi feature film, Mee Raqsam (I Dance) at a preview theatre in Juhu. All pictures/Yogen Shah
Aamir Khan, who recently shaved of his facial fuzz, attended the special screening of Mee Raqsam at a preview theatre in Juhu along with wife Kiran Rao. The actor is currently shooting for his upcoming film Laal Singh Chaddha.
Mee Raqsam explores the relationship shared by a father and his daughter also features Naseeruddin Shah in a special role. It was shot in Kaifi's hometown Mijwan, near Azamgarh. Baba in a chat with mid-day said, "My father had asked me if it would be possible to shoot a film in Mijwan. Those words stayed with me. It's emotional for me as this is my tribute to him."
In picture: Baba Azmi with family at the special screening of his film in Juhu.
Lyricist Javed Akhtar, husband of Kaifi's actor-daughter Shabana Azmi, was the brain behind the celebration. Akhtar says. "So many people came together to participate and contribute [to this tribute]. Shabana and I recited his poetries, while Shankar Mahadevan sang them and Ustad Zakir Hussain interpreted them on the tabla. A documentary [Kafinama] was made by Sumantra Ghoshal. So, it has been an interesting year."
Shabana, who has been overseeing the developments told mid-day, "With satisfaction and gratitude, what started off as a family tribute, was soon embraced by poetry lovers. We had over 48 celebrations during the year, including lit-festivals in UK, USA, Europe, and India. Mee Raqsam is about a Muslim tailor in Mijwan, and his daughter, who wants to learn Bharatnatyam. This is the ultimate tribute to Kaifi, who loved his village. The role of the teenager will be played by Aditi Sharma. She is a resident of the village and the daughter of a former attendant of abba [Kaifi Azmi]. I get gooseflesh when I think how pleased abba would be."
In picture: Shabana Azmi with son Farhan Akhtar and his girlfriend Shibani Dandekar at the preview theatre in Juhu.
Madhuri Dixit Nene and husband Shriram Nene attended the special screening of Mee Raqsam at the preview theatre in Juhu.
Urmila Matondkar looked pretty in her sky blue dress as she arrived for the special screening of Mee Raqsam in Juhu.
Vidya Balan also attended the special screening of Baba Azmi's Mee Raqsam at a preview theatre in Juhu.
Naseeruddin Shah also attended the special screening of his film Mee Raqsam at the Juhu preview theatre.
Shilpa Shetty Kundra too attended the special screening of Baba Azmi's Mee Raqsam at a preview theatre in Juhu.
Veteran actress Asha Parekh was all smile as she attended the special screening of Mee Raqsam at the theatre in Juhu.
Mahesh Bhatt along with Soni Razdan and Shaad Ali pose for the photographers at Mee Raqsam screening.
Rahul Bose was all smile as he attended the special screening of Mee Raqsam at the preview theatre in Juhu.
Designer Manish Malhotra also attended the special screening of Baba Azmi's film at the Juhu theatre.