The Legacy of Niaz Fatehpuri

Undoubtedly, every household and institution in present-day Pakistan and India has been influenced by the personality and intellectual prowess of Niaz Fatehpuri. It encompassed individuals passionate about knowledge, education, and learning.

There was no one who remained untouched by his erudition and unaffected by the charm of his personality. Niaz Sahib’s discussions on precise subjects were significant when he appeared as a storyteller for someone. Some were influenced by his style of resolving philosophical issues, while others appreciated his well-argued discussions on religious beliefs and historical topics.

There was a time when Niaz Sahib’s writings reverberated throughout the land. It was not just his stories, but his novels, scientific and research-based articles, and compilations that raised questions across India and the discussions that ensued beneath them, all resonated with the power of Niaz Sahib’s pen. His controversial book “Man-o-Yazdan” (Man and the Divine) and the magazine “Nigar” significantly elevated the readers’ intellectual thinking in educational and literary circles of present-day Pakistan.

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Niaz Fatehpuri is known for his intellectualism, which enriched various genres of Urdu literature with his thoughts and creations. Simultaneously, he was a poet, storyteller, critic, researcher, thinker, theologian, historian, psychologist, journalist, and translator. His writings are an unparalleled asset to Urdu language, covering a wide range of literary and scientific subjects. Niaz Fatehpuri’s literary and intellectual pursuits were vast, which he popularized through the magazine “Nigar.” The magazine published articles on literature, philosophy, religion, and science, initiating a series of discussions and contemplations on complex issues and precise matters. Niaz Fatehpuri also wrote extensively and brilliantly on modern psychology, hypnotism, and sexuality. His articles such as “The Possibility of Communication with Martians” in the 1924 issue of “Nigar” and “The Map of War a Century Later” in 1935, demonstrate his creative abilities, curiosity, and scientific inclinations. Due to his rationalist approach, Niaz Sahib faced staunch opposition and severe criticism. Not only that, he was accused of religious deviation and heresy by religious and conservative circles.

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Niaz Fatehpuri passed away on May 24, 1966. A glance at his life’s journey reveals that he opened his eyes in Bara Banki district of Uttar Pradesh on December 28, 1884, and from the beginning, his inclination was towards the world of knowledge and literature. The habit of contemplation and reflection prepared him to see and understand different subjects and issues with the power of reason and knowledge. In 1922, Niaz Fatehpuri started the publication of the literary and scientific journal “Nigar,” which soon became a shining example of imaginative thinking in Urdu-speaking circles. Allama Niaz Fatehpuri left behind 35 memorable books, including “Man-o-Yazdan,” “Nigaristan,” “Shahab ki Sarguzasht,” “Jamalistan,” and “Intiqadat,” which gained significant popularity.

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Mohammad Tufail, the editor of the magazine “Risala Naqoosh,” writes that Niaz Sahib achieved whatever distinction he obtained through the magic of his pen. He did not require any formal arrangements to write; he used to have conversations while writing. He wrote while talking, and his glory was evident. If the need arose, he would sip tea while speaking and say, “How did you understand that I am busy with work?” He had an excellent memory. Everything, every book, transferred to his mind. This is what I observed in Inayat, Josh, and N

Abdul Rehman

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