Passing away of illustrious Siddiqa Begum


IT was with utmost sadness that I learnt on sunday of the passing away of Siddiqa Begum, the Chief Editor of Adab-i-Latif,the noted and one of the oldest Urdu Literary Journal of the country. She belonged to an elite literary family of Lahore, being daughter of Chaudhury Barket Ali, Founder of Adab-i-Latif and owner of a reputed Publishing House of Lahore. She was married to an old friend and class fellow of mine, Javed Tariq, who was also a nephew of the noted writer /auther Ashfaq Ahmed.
Javed Tariq had moved from Sahiwal to Lahore, when afterwards he became a banker, being associated first with Habib Bank and then in top position with MCB.But he became a leading industrialist later on. I had met her long ago before she separated from the husband and took over the Editorship of Adab-i-latif. Another sister of her was married to another friend and colleague of mine Rehman who happened to be the uncle of noted artist Tariq Aziz.
I noticed the surge of Adab-i- Latif, after she became actively involved with the magazine. Some noted names of Urdu Literature, like Intizar Hussain ,Khalida Hussain, Sarmad Sabhai,Kishwar Naheed, Mustansar Tarar, Masood Asher and other were involved with the magazine ,which revived it to great heights. During my long stint with PIA, I remained in touch with Siddiqa Begum and her brother Khalid, and this association even continued afterwards when I finally shifted back to Lahore two decade ago.
However she had been not in good health for quite some time and passed away after a protracted illness on Sunday. Here is my deep condolence to the family of illustrious Siddiqa Begum and my prayers on the demise of the noteworthy literary personality.