Wednesday, June 23, 2010

UPDATED: IBNE SAFI - NEW article just out - with references

A recent UPDATE with Newest from Rashid...(Also refer's to TV program out Monday and Wednesday week of 26 July 2010):

Some more facts…..Here, you have mentioned three soft links of info on House of Fear i.e of flipcart, rediff books Hungry Reader...There are a few another link which may be referred here:

Hindustan Times dot com here -- this article is written on Feb 05, 2010 by Aasheesh Sherma Amrita Talwar for Hindustan Times.

Soft link of the second article as regard with Ibne Safi’s novels translation is as below. This article was published on Dec 2, 2009 in - GO here

Beside busy with a private TV channel of Karachi for a 01 hour documentary on Ibne Safi, I am preparing a comprehensive list of English/Urdu articles written on Ibne Safi along with web sites, blogs, Audio Clips of Ibne Safi , Video Clips of friends of Ibne Safi, M.Phil/PHd done or being done on Ibne Safi, Books written on Ibne Safi, Books/magazines in which Ibne Safi is mentioned etc. My Goodness! It would be surprising for me and all Ibne Safi lovers that as yet, there are 144 Urdu and 12 English articles written on Ibne Safi. This is unbelievable. All these articles are written with a great affection by different writers/literary personalities/poets/literary critics/university professors etc etc. I will soon include the list at wadi-e-urdu as well as at as I always like to share my work for my MURABBI Hanif Sahab.

I also like to inform Ibne Safi lovers that after 40 years, I have traced and contacted Maulana Hippy (Muhammad Hussain Talpur) who was the producer of film Dhamaka written by Ibne Safi. It was released on December 29 , 1974...Maulana Hippy went back to SINDH province where from he came to Karachi in 1970s to start his film carrier. Now, if we will be able to meet him, it would be a big deal.

The quest is on.


See also English article “Ibne Safi - The Master Craftsman” published in Daily Pakistan on July 22, 2010 on 30th death anniversary of Safi Sahab...

---- Another Urdu article “Bayad Ibne Safi” (In Memeory of Ibne Safi) published in a widely circulated magazine of Pakistan Nae Ufaq here

---- To pay tribute to the great prolific mystery writer Janab IBNE SAFI, a one hour complemntary program will be telecasted from GEO TV (Geo News) Karachi time: The date and timings are as under July 26, 2010 on Monday: 4.05 PM to 5.00 PM
Repeat Telecast: July 28: Wednesday: 11.05 PM - 12.00 PM - In this program you will have the opportunity to see & hear members of Ibne Safi's family along with some other (celebrities and dignitaries).


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Credit for the portrait of Ibn-e-Safi goes to the official home page

Again, for ongoing official information related to the work of Ibne Safi, we refer you to the family-approved Website:

IBNE SAFI. (1928-1980)

GO here

SEE a few "Notes & Tid-Bits" from the Ibne Safi Official Site at end of this post (such as Ibne Safi's skill with poetry and a little on Consensus Literature) with a few other related references.

Rashid Ashraf Sahib who wrote the following article also just sent this comment to oneheartforpeace (See an earlier article this year - under blog archive for April: Saturday, April 24, 2010 "Updated: Ibn-e-SAFI reviewed upon occasion of 1st English translation")

Dear Nash!

I have written a fresh article on Ibne Safi which was published in Daily Business Recorder, Pakistan on June 19, 2010. Here is the link:


It (was meant) to be published on July 26, 2010 on the occasion of 30th anniversary of Ibne Safi Sahab, however, for some particular reason, editor of the newspaper decided to publish a little earlier.

The third (to) last paragraph is of immense significance as this request was not made by anyone before this.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Ibne Safi - a great fiction-writer By RASHID ASHRAF for WEEKEND MAGAZINE (June 19 2010): There was a time when people wrote a literary piece and then ascribed it to someone whom they held in high esteem or out of love, admiration, reverence or some other strong sentiment. There could be tens of hundreds of such Urdu writers who can ascribe their writings to one who taught them to write that is undoubtedly fully none other than Asia's greatest mystery writer Ibne Safi.

Coincidentally Ibne Safi's date of birth and date of death falls on July 26. Ibne Safi, was born in Allahabad on July 26, 1928. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Agra University and started his first job at 'Nikhat Publications' as an Editor in the poetry department, in 1948.

He began writing detective stories in January 1952 in the monthly 'Nikhat', naming the series 'Jasoosi Dunya' and the same year, he migrated to Pakistan. Ibne Safi created the Imran Series in 1955 when he settled in Karachi, where he lived until pancreatic cancer caused his death in 1980 on July 26, that was also his 52nd birthday...

Ibne Safi was the successful pioneer of the mystery genre in Urdu literature. He was an immensely well-read man. His thorough study of English, Urdu and Persian literature enabled him to create his own unique style of captivating story-telling. He blended mystery with quality humour, espionage, law enforcement, credible science fiction, thrilling adventure and fabulous drama. His creative mind imagined and foresaw scientific and technological inventions like robot, laser beam, cloning etc. He then convincingly merged these inventions into his plots with equal skill in fiction-writing.

His understanding of the human nature gave his characters a living, breathing existence of its own kind. Some of his characters shyly displayed their weaknesses and flaunted their strengths, whereas others worked hard to unsuccessfully conceal them. That was the master craftsman, Ibne Safi.

His name is familiar to generations of readers in Pakistan. So are the names of his characters, Colonel Faridi, Captain Hameed and Ali Imran. As a boy, Ibne Safi grew up reading Tilism-e-Hoshruba. As an adult, he created a magical universe of his own.

A pioneer in the field of detective fiction in Urdu, he wrote 245 books at an astonishing rate of two books a month. His place in Urdu literature was recognised by Maulvi Abdul Haq (Baba-e-Urdu), Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan (Nuclear Scientist/Mohsin-e-Pakistan), Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission's Chairman I.H Usmani, Pir Ali Muhammad Rashidi, Mir Ali Ahmed Talpur, Dr Abulkhair Kashfi, Professor Majnoon Gorakhpuri, Professor Muhammad Hasan Askari, Khawaja Nazim Uddin (Second Governor General of Pakistan), Mushtaq Ahmed Qureshi (Former Finance/Joint Secretary APNS), Miraj Rasool, Munir Hussain (Cricket Commentator), Raees Amrohvi, John Alia, Shair Lakhnavi, Professor Sarshar Siddiqui, Obaid Ullah Baig (Kasooti Fame), Writer/ Dramatist Kamal Ahmed Rizvi (Allan of Alif Noon), Daily Hurriyat's Columnist Nassar Ullah Khan, Dr Aslam Farrukhi, Amjad Islam Amjad, Qazi Akhtar Jonagari, Indian poet Zubair Rizvi, Indian Poet/lyricist Javed Akhtar, the Sahitya Academy president Dr Gopi Chand Narang etc.

He had tremendous flair and sophistication, says Indian Poet/lyricist Javed Akhtar. "Ibne Safi's novels created an imaginary city that could have been the San Francisco of the 50s in India. His penchant for villains with striking names like Gerald Shastri and Sang Hi taught me the importance of creating larger-than life characters such as Gabbar and Mogambo as a scriptwriter."

The Sahitya Academy president Dr Gopi Chand Narang questioned why 'Jasoosi Adab' is not considered literature and if it is not literature then why the word 'Adab' (literature) is attached to it, during such seminars. He said that Ibne Safi was published in Devanagari and Bengali as well, and rather than ignoring his works, there is need to change our own attitude.

Ibne Safi was also a poet. He used to write poems under the pen name of "Asrar Narvi". He wrote in various genres of Urdu poetry, such as Hamd, Naat, Manqabat, Marsia, Ghazal and Nazm. His collection of poetry, Mata-e Qalb-o-Nazar (Urdu: The Assest of Heart & Sight), remains unpublished. It would be a delightful news for his admirers and lovers that the collection of his poetry is being published by his son Ahmad Safi.

Writer Syed N. Hussaini commended about the Maestro, "One of Ibn-e-Safi's distinguished writing qualities includes formation and development of characters. He has established characters in such a fashion that they appear to be real and materialised. Imran Series has a range of diverse, colourful, and sentient characters. His lead characters, Colonel Ahmad Kamal Faridi and Ali Imran, M.Sc, P.H.D., Oxon, were scholarly, celibate and sober. Endowed with exceptional physical strength, quick reflexes and great survival skills, they were master spies, brilliant detectives and top-of-the-line law-enforcement officers. They were of immaculate character, utterly incorruptible. Colonel Faridi and Ali Imran, both were fabulously rich with inherited and earned wealth, as well. Ibne Safi knew how to back up the credibility of his characters.

In the late 50's, starting with "Dilchasp Hadsa," Ibne Safi launched an epic adventure to be completed in three books ending with "Darh Matwalay." After writing two books of this thrilling series, he had a nervous breakdown, an episode of schizophrenia. He was out of his work for about three years but, when he came back, he did so with a big hit masterpiece "Dairh Matwalay". It was not only an immense success but a witness to the strength of Ibne Safi's mind. With flawless continuity, "Dairh Matwalay" brought the three-book adventure to its climatic conclusion with no literary signs of the fact that the writer was absent from the scene for three years. A poster of 1963 of Daily Hurriyat announced the came back of Ibne Safi with the words: "app ka mehboob musanif app kay liye deewangi kay sehra say wapas aa gaya hai" (Your beloved writer has arrived back for you from the desert of insanity)

Ibne Safi had a great ability to read and analyse the values prevalent in society and momentum of changes that would occur. In this context, foreword of novel 'Sitaron Ki Cheekhain', (Jasoosi Dunya-92) (written in 1964) may be referred where, in response to a letter, he stated that perda (veil) was supposed to be the icon of dignity, however nowadays, it is antiquated and becomes a symbol of less privileged. Ibne Safi forecasted that hardly after 10 years (ie in 1974), these types of social values will vanish. Needless to say that his apprehensions were proved with the passage of time.

A few forewords of his novels are remarkably interesting. In the foreword of 'Sehmi hoi Lerki' (Jasoosi Dunya-96), a telephone operator from the city of Tando Adam, Sindh declared the said novel a trash as he thought that the name of the novel does not match with its plot. In response, Safi sahib showed his wit while saying "Yar Tando Admi sahib, khud hi likh ker perh liya karo".

Books written by Ibne Safi are considered an intrinsic part of the rich Urdu literature. Ibne Safi wrote impeccable, accurate, authentic, modern, industrial-age Urdu proving that it can be done while following all the rules of the language. He standardised Urdu to a level that excerpts from his works could be considered as a template to teach Urdu prose-writing at the universities.

How good was Ibne Safi for intellectual stimulation? Every now and then, in his work, one finds profound philosophical insights. Critics have noted that he had it in him to write more exalted prose. But the imperative of earning his livelihood restricted his range and confined him to a formula. Ibne Safi was the most prolific Urdu novelist making history with 245 titles of Jasoosi Dunya and Imran Series to his credit.

Ibne Safi fans would be delighted to know that the English versions of two of his novels of Imran Series have been published by Random House, New Dehli and will soon be available in Pakistan. Random House has initially selected two novels of Imran series ie House of Fear (Khofnak Imarat) and Shootout in Rocks (Chatanoon Main Fire). In addition to that, about eight Hindi Editions of Ibne Safi's Jasoosi Dunya have also been published by Harper Collins, India.

It would certainly be a befitting, though posthumous adoption and acknowledgement of the stature of this prolific writer that the higher authorities of City District Government of Karachi dedicate any one of the roads, bridge/flyover or building of this city in the name of Ibne Safi. It is also suggested that the higher-ups of Karachi University start conducting M.Phil and PhD works on this great writer so as to unravel the hidden characteristics of detective story writing, an art, which holds a significant place in rest of the World's literature.

Apart from the official site CLICK here a new non-commercial web site CLICK here has been launched in 2009 which contains lots of rare material and information pertaining to Ibne Safi.

Ibne Safi was a true genius, gave new dimensions to art of writing suspense novels. I think the farewell salute I could give to the maestro is this: "Life is only action and reaction. The rationalizations are added later." (Edlava - Imran Series-78).

Copyright Business Recorder, 2010


Note that although the new non-commercial site mentioned above by Rashid Sb is not yet official - there are quite a few videos (YouTube) and some interesting-looking documents in URDU, etc. web site CLICK here Do you recognize anyone?

SEE Also and Especially: Ibne Safi Website

The following little "Notes & Tid-Bits" (including poem at end) are from the Official Ibne Safi Site - Find more at the family's Official Ibne Safi Website:

Photo of Khurram Ali Shafique

See, particularly, the compelling idea of Consensus Literature by going to end of home page on official site and looking in right column. Ibne Safi has been named the "pioneer" of this genre by Khurram Ali Shafique, an historian, educationist, playwright and much more. ( Find selections from Shafique Sahib's work on Consensus in Urdu script on the Official site. ) See also under English essays on official site's home page the article in English "Literature for the Thrill-Seeker's Literati" also by Shafique Sahib.

Here are ample quotes from another "official" work:
"The Writer Who Sold More Than Agatha Christie" By Khaled Ahmed (Monthly The Herald, February 1983)

In an interview about crime fiction, Dame Agatha Christie once surprised her audience by naming an obscure Asian writer who had written more and sold more than her. Pakistan's early Governor General Khawaja Nazimuddin kept a shelf of his novels for 'intellectual entertainment'.

Agatha Christie died in 1976 at the age of 77, after 80 novels and a record 3 million sales. Ibne Safi died in 1980 at the age of 52 after having written more than 200 novels sold by fake writers and pirates in seven languages in India and Pakistan...

He was ten years old...when he read his first thriller, Qaisi Rampuri’s Talismi Fawwara and was fired by the urge to write...His other source of inspiration was Talism-e-Hoshruba, the mammoth treasury of Urdu fable, which he read regularly throughout his life and which gave him the elegant style so admired by his readers...

The hero of Ibne-Safi's second series is Imran...a maddening mixture of traits... His background is uncertain...except that he has been driven into rebellion by a despotic father. He (Imran) is sharp, he is stupid; he is devilishly quick, he is plodding; he is fearless, he is a coward; he is tender...He went to London to become a doctor but received training in detection instead. His father considers him a good-for-nothing, criminals think him a police informer. But he is a patriot, a nemesis of the underworld and the espionage networks. He loves make-up and disguise, is a spendthrift, fond of horseplay, constantly munching on a chewing gum. He is the most feared X-2...but he is in fact an officer of the Foreign Office. In the former guise everyone is scared of him and wants to know his real identity; in the latter guise he is made fun of and considered a dumb bureaucrat.

Imran is trained by a Chinese, Sung Hee, in the martial arts...Julia, a Swiss beauty, is Imran’s frequent aide (who)...she finds the urge to explode his X-2 identity irresistible. But she always fails; Imran is too clever behind his dumb facade. Fayyaz is the local police inspector who gets all his good cases solved through Imran but hates him...Theresa, the Bumble-Bee (Queen Bee?) of Bohemia, the queen of the underworld who loves Imran as X-2 and wants him to join her gang.

...Ibne Safi's...Faridi is a professional like Perry Mason, not terribly forensic but definitely based on the Holmesian principle, reasoning things out in an armchair before taking action. Once action is indicated, he leaves Perry Mason and Holmes behind. Here Ibne Safi is not following the intellectual, non-action-oriented example of Doyle and Gardner; he follows the Anglo-Chinese writer Leslie Charteris, creator of the: 'Saint'. The elegance and suppleness of Faridi is that of the Saint ...Then, in respect of style, Ibne Safi rejects the slang of Cheyney and favours the almost literary excellence of Charteris.

...The women too are there but the liaisons are all toned down and there are no torrid scenes...

...It would be in order here to trace the limitations of Ibne Safi. He took the outlandish background from Rider Haggard and Edgar Wallace with the result that his backdrops are more like Talism-e-Hoshruba than contemporary detective fiction. He has definitely been impressed by Agatha Christie’s plots and her easy, flowing style but not her subtle emphasis on the locales. He has followed Gardner's cue on characterisation and eschewed the detailed inner scrutiny of Chase or even Dorothy L. Sayers...His heroes accepted transgressions only to the extent the Saint did; they were all morally immaculate, sexually virginal. Yet, he was no pastiche-writer. His humour and his style are native to him. He wrote a wonderfully elegant but fluid Urdu, somewhat like Manto, totally organic to what he wanted to describe.

...for 30 years (he wrote) two books a month until till he broke down in 1960, like Edgar Wallace and Dorothy L. Sayers...

Ibne Safi is truly the only real bestseller in Urdu. His novels have been translated into six languages of India and have sold more than any other novel... he created new cultural heroes, built his own microcosm of fiction that readers willingly accepted. He introduced humour into the rather serious world of detective fiction. And, above all, he wrote an Urdu style rarely seen in popular fiction."
END (of excerpts from essay By Khaled Ahmed)

FEEDBACK to the Official site:
Ibn-e-Safi sahib ki Official website
arsay say internet per na dastiyab thi....Bus ARCHIVE.COM per wo mehfooz thi....Laikin uska address itna lamba hua ...

"Ibne Safi was basically a poet. He used to write poems under the pen name of “Asrar Narvi”. He has created various Hamd, Naat, Manqabat, Marsia, Ghazals, and Nazms. His collection of poetry, Mata-e Qalb-o-Nazar, remains unpublished."


Akhtar Wasim Dar said...

The poem by Ibne Safi and in his handwriting is a delight. Thanks for this gift.

Thinking said...

hmm..very good post..Connie...Sorry I just hop in today to see where are you and find this lovely post....

I hope to read you more and to read you on others blogs too...kind a miss your comment dear friend...

See ya than....take care.

Connie L. Nash said...

Thank You Dar Sahib. Funny I realize that I'm posting such items yet when Rashid Sb sent me the new item, I felt so loyal. Someday, I sure hope as a would-be poet to read Ibne Safi's poetry along with so much more. Do let me know as soon as the English version of any item is available through a publication available to me and friends.

Thinking, hello dear friend. Yes long visit to family at the other coast and now am having some difficulty catching up with some need to respond to various topics and to find once again my equanimity...yet am in process to getting it back. Look up and forward to find two on this topic. Yes, I miss you as well and commenting on your compelling and refreshing items.

rana said...

Hi ,today while searching for great authors such as Ibne Safi. Akram Illah abadi. Izhar Assar.H Iqbal etc i found this blog n was shocked n amazed ,its an appreciable step towards our great authors ,i would like to request all readers if any body have or know about some one who has full set of books(or few books also) of these great authors andalso willing to sell i would like to buy at any reasonable price rana
(my mail id)

Connie L. Nash said...

Dear Rana,

So glad that you found this site! I will try to alert some of my friends and contacts who may possibly be able to help toward your request.

May you also be supported in your efforts to get out the word on such original and needed literature for our world today as well as yesterday.

Connie L. Nash said...

By the way, Rana, keep checking back as soon I hope to post more on Ibne Safi by his own beloved and admiring son. And there are new sources for purchasing the first English version of House of Fear I intend to mention as well in a few days.

Connie L. Nash said...

See latest items to be updated with photos added for weekend of 26 July and following...

CN said...

The Article is Ibne Safi - The Masters Craftman was the original property of sent by the author Rashid Ashraf via email with giving us the publishing rights on 20 July 2010.

This article was first published on >JinnahPost written by Rashid Ashraf.) It is our policy to monitor all the articles on the web. JinnahPost Team on 2/22/13