PALF INC. Inauguration Ceremony & Mehfil-e-Mushaira 2015
URDU FOR ALL
Written by: Asma Muhammad
Pakistan-Australia Literary Forum (PALF) Incorporated was founded in July 2014, as South Australia’s first and only literary and cultural organisation striving to promote Urdu language. After a year of monthly meetings and management committee proposals, it was finalized that PALF Inc. will make its first public appearance in October 2015. Hence, on 18th October 2015 PALF Inc. held its Inauguration Ceremony with a Literary Session and Mehfil-e-Mushaira in Adelaide.
The night began as the hall filled up with over 200 attendees, eager to enjoy the event. The event commenced with the recitation of the Holy Quran by Shayaan Qaiser. Following this, the audience stood up in respect for the National Anthems of Australia and Pakistan. Qatada Muhammad & Haseeb Ahmad both did the Karna Welcome in Urdu and English. Dr. Ghulam Jilani was the host for half of the evening, as he welcomed the guests. The event was divided into three sections, first being the introductory part, second part was for kids and the last section was Mehfil-e-Mushaira.
After the welcome, the host Dr. Jilani invited the President of PALF Inc. Mr. R. M. Afzal Razvi to deliver his speech. He once again welcomed the guests and highlighted the aims & objectives of PALF and explained why this organisation was formed. He added that anyone can become a member of PALF Inc., who agree to support and promote our motto.
Afterwards, Ms. S. F. Gilani presented her very well written and thoughtful paper on the history of Urdu Language and literature followed by Mrs. Fauzia Jilani’s Urdu translated article on “Reaction vs Response”, which was enjoyed by the audience as it was humorous and gave out a very strong message. Dr. Azhar Iqbal read out the Urdu translation of the Australia’s National Anthem “Advance Australia Fair”, with his daughter Emma Azhar signing the Anthem itself. The literary session of the evening was an informative section of the night, aimed for the adults but also for the youth for which this organisation has been formed.
After all the serious talks, it was time for some fun and laughter, which was heard across the hall, as the kids came on the stage to perform. Eesha performed a national song “Sohni Dharti Allah Rakhay” in her melodious voice, as the audience cheered her with their applause. Next we had a group of children who performed a musical play on “Lab Pe Aati Hai Dua Ban Ke Tamanna Mery”. I believe this was the most memorable and happiest part of the evening as many parents stood proud seeing their children come up on the stage for the first time with confidence, dressed up as either a beautiful flower, a moth, an old man, as light, and so on. Every child performer made the audience smile and many of us were put in the “AAWWW Phase”, as kids came forth in their cute and stunning costumes.
Next we had two boys singing ‘Dil Dil Pakistan” with rest of the group waving Pakistani and Australian flags in the background, showing their passion and love for both countries. This wasn’t the end yet, there was also a very short humorous play performed by three children, of which one was dressed as a father, the other as a son and a girl dresses as a statue. The moral of the play was to show the parents, that they can be very harsh on children sometimes and they need to understand their children and support/encourage them in whatever they choose to do, along with parents shouldn’t lie to their children as they learn from their elders.
As the second part of the event ended, it was time for the most awaited session of the night, “Mehfil-e-Mushaira”. It is important to mention here that our chief guest of the night was Mr. Rana Shahid Javed, who flew from Melbourne and the guest of honours were Dr. Zafar Iqbal Zafar (Melbourne), Mr. Waheed Qindeel (Melbourne), Mr. Basharat Sami, Mr. Saleem Shaukat, Mr. Shammi Jalandhari, Mr. Ferhaj Sheikh and Ms. Tehmina Jabeen. These guests were also the participants of the “Mehfil-e-Mushaira”, along with Mr. R. M. Afzal Razvi the President of PALF Inc. Every single poet had so much to recite, a lot of us including myself wished the night didn’t end, as there was a lot of amazing poetry to listen to.
There was also childcare arranged for the kids and many activities including a ‘Drawing & Colouring Competition’. Mr. Rana Shahid Javed handed out prizes to the deserving winners towards end of the ceremony.
On behalf of the PALF Inc. management team I would like to thank all the guests for being part of our first ever-public event, and thank you for making it so successful and memorable. The evening ended with a complimentary dinner for all the guests, with delicious dishes in the menu.
I must say as an event manager, I was not expecting such an enormous amount of positive feedback from the audience. The event wouldn’t have been successful without the management committee and the chief guests, but most of all the audience. Mr. Rana Shahid Javed who is the producer of SBS Radio Urdu and Chief Editor of Pehchaan International congratulated and praised us with mentioning the names of every single committee member and gave us encouragement to continue to do the great work we are doing for the promotion of Urdu Language & culture.
The event was held to introduce and promote PALF Inc. and show people what PALF Inc. aims to do along with the kinds of events & gatherings it aims to hold. We received many phone calls, texts, Facebook comments, messages and emails thanking us for holding such a marvelous event for both the adults and kids to enjoy, along with congratulating us on its success. A lot of the attendees of the event were very eager to become part of the PALF Inc. family as they signed up for the membership. The audience complimented us on the beautiful hall arrangement, which was done in banquet style, as it was an official family event.
We will also take the opportunity to appreciate Mrs Zulekha Saleh Muhammad for her great support and work in running the drawing and colouring in competition in the second hall for little kids while the ceremony was going on.
We are very happy with the response we have received so far. PALF Inc. membership can be gained through the website palf.org.au/membership, we assure you that you will not regret becoming a part of an Urdu Movement, as our slogan is URDU FOR ALL (Urdu sab kay liye). The membership is open Australia wide. We hope to achieve our aims and objectives by more people taking our membership, which will allow us to spread our wings even further and host grander events.