Today, on October 13, we fondly remember the life and legacy of renowned writer, researcher, and playwright, Syed Imtiaz Ali Taj. Born in Lahore in 1900, he hailed from a family steeped in artistic and literary traditions, with his father, Syed Mumtaz Ali, being a writer, journalist, and religious scholar.
Syed Mumtaz Ali had initiated an educational magazine for children called “Phool,” which became a household name, running successfully for over four decades. Following his father’s passing in 1935, Imtiaz Ali Taj took the reins as the magazine’s editor, steering it to even greater heights.
Imtiaz Ali Taj is best known for his 1922 play “Anarkali,” a remarkable work based on the life of the legendary figure “Anarkali.” The play was staged countless times and found its way into feature films, including the iconic Indian film “Mughal-e-Azam.”
One of his most cherished contributions is “Chacha Chakan,” a series of humorous plays for children known for their wit, satire, and humor. “Chacha Chakan” is celebrated as one of the funniest characters in Urdu drama.
Imtiaz Ali Taj’s literary repertoire extended to encompass short stories, novels, and screenplays. He also remained actively engaged in the theatre, not only as a writer but also as an actor and director.
Tragically, on April 19, 1970, the world lost this talented artist when he was assassinated in his sleep by unknown assailants. Today, we honor his enduring contributions to literature and theatre, ensuring that his legacy lives on.