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I am not retiring: Saeed Mirza (Interview)

Comments  Comments [ 1 ]    By IANS | 27 January 2008 | 10:38am

New Delhi, Jan 27 (IANS) Celebrated filmmaker-scriptwriter Saeed Mirza says he enjoyed the experience of penning his debut novel 'Ammi: Letter To A Democratic Mother' so much that now he only wants to concentrate on writing.

The director, who made films like 'Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyon Ata Hai' and 'Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro', is not planning to retire, though he will stop making films.

'I am not retiring. I just won't make any more films because now I want to write. I loved the experience of writing. I felt at peace when I was writing the book. The four-and-a-half years was an incredible pleasure of writing and I don't want to lose that,' Mirza told IANS.

'Actor-director Rajat Kapoor has forced me to make a film for him which I am going to start next month, but after that I won't make any more films.'

Mirza's book talks about his parents' romance and how they got married. But the novel is a mix of fact and fiction.

'It's a fantasised love story in the beginning. But there is a story of them (his parents) coming to Mumbai. It's a story of love, great friendship and partnership. My parents were great partners.'

Commenting on the use of the word 'democratic' in the book's title, he said: 'I think my mother was the most democratic person I have met in my life. The best part is that she didn't know it. She saw the world differently. She actually felt there is incredible honesty, dignity and wisdom in ordinary people and she is right.'

Mirza says his mother, who died in 1990, was a multifaceted woman.

'She could fix up the fuse, juicer, electric iron. She used to cook very well, stitch very well. She used to be a good plumber and electrician. What a lady! She was a wholesome person.

'She was very open to ideas and people. She didn't have a closed mind. My sister is married to a Brahmin, my brother is married to a Hindu, I married a Christian. She allowed it and there was no issue. I think she was incredible.'

The book is a tribute to both his parents.

'I have dedicated the book to my father. Thanks to my father, I did a lot of reading. I feel I have read more than required,' said Mirza, whose father Akhtar Mirza scripted hit movies like 'Naya Daur' and 'Waqt'.

Apart from encompassing his parents' life, Mirza covers the unrest around the world starting from India's partition to Vietnam War, the Babri Masjid demolition and revolution in Turkey.

'The novel has to do with the time we live in and I am trying to link it up with the past. In fact, I am trying to link the past, present and the future into a kind of a whole in the book. And it's a journey I have taken at a personal level and the book reflects it,' said Mirza, who is saddened by the war like atmosphere that destroys peace.

'The kind of forms and structures that I use, simultaneously it is trying to understand a world, which we have inherited. I believe that the reason for this kind of a system is because we are following a path of development laid down 500 years ago, and that was based on war.

'The people in power are posing destructive questions. Ordinary citizens want peace. A select few are ruling and they create wars and mayhem and they destroy the mountain, the river, the atmosphere - they pollute the streets and then call it development.'

He says the future lies in the hands of the ordinary people.

'Ordinary people have the answers and let them take the world in their hand,' said Mirza, who is set to embark on another literary journey.

Copyright  IANS

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