Observer ReportTuesday, April 24, 2012 - Lahoer: The Gurmani Centre for Languages and Literature of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at LUMS organized a conference on the “Naya Urdu Afsana” to commemorate the centennial of the iconic writer Saadat Hasan Manto. The daylong conference began with the welcome address by the Vice Chancellor of LUMS, Professor Adil Najam and introduction by Yasmeen Hameed, Coordinator of the Gurmani Centre. This opening session was chaired by Intezar Husain, who brought into focus the different problems associated with afsana, as a term and as a concept.
Dr. Shamim Hanfi from Delhi delivered an eloquent keynote address in which he spoke about the different receptions and interpretations of Manto’s writings and also commented on afsana in general by saying that its purpose is not to report on the social and political circumstances of the time but rather to shed light on human emotions. Bano Qudsia spoke about new trends in the Urdu short story. She said that creativity, however radical, is grounded in a pre-existing tradition.