Hyderabad: If there is a single passion shared by almost all it is the love for poetry. Be it a movie song or works of classical poets almost everyone is moved by the melody of the words. However, very few are in a position to actually comprehend the meaning, much less appreciate and critically evaluate the verses.

Urdu poetry, particularly its ghazal genre, has always cast a spell on people. Many are seen humming the verses although they do not fully understand the meaning. To delve deeper into its nuances, a 'Sher Fahmi' (poetry appreciation) programme is being launched under the auspices of Anjuman-e-Taraqqi Urdu and Anjuman-e-Rekhta Goyan, Hyderabad. The three-month course seeks to impart the basic knowledge of Ilme Arooz (poetic grammar) so that one can better understand the rhythm, intonation, style, and structure of different genres of Urdu shayeri.

The course will be launched on November 1 at Urdu Hall, Himayatnagar. Classes will be held on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 am to 1 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm. Those proficient in Urdu language and literature will deliver lectures on Urdu poetry, its genres and grammar. "There is a demand for such a course from different quarters, particularly from non-Urdu speakers. Therefore, we have decided to start the Sher Fahmi course", says Dr. Javeed Kamal, course coordinator.

The teaching methodology, which includes lectures, practical demonstration, explanation, exposition besides question and answer session, will be adopted to inculcate interest in Urdu poetry and to impart skills of Ilme Arooz. "Our idea is to encourage poetic excellence and provide a platform to budding poets", Dr. Kamal says.

The organisers have decided to hold a written and an oral exam at the end of the course. There will be prizes too for the first three toppers and participation certificates for everyone. For more details call 040-23222919 or 9246585833.

J.S. Ifthekhar

J.S. Ifthekhar is a senior journalist with nearly four decades of experience. Ifthekhar cut his teeth in journalism at the Indian Express before he moved to The Hindu. He was also associated with the Siasat Daily, Telangana Today, Deccan Chronicle, Onlooker magazine, Newstrack, Detective Digest and a few news agencies. He has written on different subjects and aspects of Hyderabadi life. However, his passion remains literature in general and Urdu poetry in particular. He is equally concerned with culture, heritage, civic affairs and problems confronting the man in the street. As a journalist he has taken up cudgels on behalf of the underprivileged and many of his stories in The Hindu saw the government promptly taking corrective measures. Ifthekhar has authored two books - Hyderabad - The Nawabi City on The Move and Haj - The Spirit Behind it. He has also translated two books from Urdu to English. His third book - Urdu Poets and Writers , Gems of Deccan  - is just released. Loves to write and writes to live. Can't imagine doing anything else.

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