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Updated: October 22, 2013 22:30 IST

Now, step into the world of thrillers and espionage

J. S. Ifthekhar
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A poster announcing the seminar on Ibn-e-Safi, great detective writer of Urdu, beginning at Manuu on Wednesday.
The Hindu A poster announcing the seminar on Ibn-e-Safi, great detective writer of Urdu, beginning at Manuu on Wednesday.

National seminar on Urdu thriller writer Ibn-e-Safi to begin at Manuu today

HYDERABAD: Welcome to ‘Jasoosi Duniya’, the world of espionage. Get ready for some action and no-holds-barred thrills. There are no dull moments when it comes to whodunits.

Maulana Azad National Urdu University (Manuu) promises just that. For die-hard fans of Ibn-e-Safi, Urdu’s greatest detective writer, it is the place to be in for the next two days.

The national seminar on the king of thriller writers, beginning on Wednesday, promises to provide edge-of-the-seat entertainment. Avid readers of Ibn-e-Safi will have plenty to know about their favourite writer, who rode the world of spy fiction like a colossus during his life time. Even now, he remains the best-selling writer of popular fiction in the sub-continent.

Ibn-e-Safi lovers and research scholars from various parts of the country are arriving to shed light on the celebrated writer who held generations of readers spellbound. They will discuss not just his style of writing, wit and humour but also his thought process.

Mujawir Husain Rizvi, a contemporary and close friend of Ibn-e-Safi, is coming from Allahabad, the home district of the writer. He is expected to give an insight into the legendary writer. Besides, Prof. Syed Sajjad Hussain from Chennai University, considered an expert on Ibn-e-Safi, will also take part in the deliberations.

However, the writer’s son, Ahmad Safi, and Rasheed Ashraf, who developed an attractive website on Ibn-e-Safi, will not be coming from Pakistan due to visa problem, it is said.

Detective fiction did not occupy the pride of place in Urdu literature till Ibn-e-Safi started churning out bestsellers. “In the process, he contributed immensely to the popularity of Urdu. Many persons who do not know Urdu have learnt the language just to read his novels,” says Khalid Sayeed, Director, Centre for Urdu Language, Literature and Culture, Manuu.

Mystery, adventure, suspense, romance and comedy are the stuff of Ibn-e-Safi’s novels. His adventurous plots takes readers round the world – England, Scotland, Tokyo, South Africa and even the Amazon jungles. Some of the characters like Col. Faridi, Captain Hameed and Imran are so life like that readers take them to be real ‘jeete jagte insaan’. So is the case with the imaginary domains of his stories like ‘Shakraal’, ‘Karaghaal’ and ‘Zeroland’.

This Arthur Cannon Doyle of Urdu wrote a total of 250 books. Of this 125 pertain to the spy world and the rest are Imran series. “His books are not to be kept on shelves but to be found under every pillow,” says Saiqa Parveen, an ardent fan of Ibn-e-Safi.

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