The much-anticipated Jashn-e-Rekhta, one of the world’s largest Urdu language, literature and cultural festivals, is all set to take place in Dubai for the first time.
The celebrated festival, which has been successful in India for eight years and gained popularity in London in September 2023, is now gaining traction in Dubai.
The festival is scheduled for Saturday, January 27 and Sunday, January 28 at the Zabeel Park, Dubai, from 1:30 pm to 11 pm on both days.
It is set to be a vibrant celebration of poetry, talks, ghazals, storytelling, and cultural exchanges.
Sanjiv Saraf, founder of the Rekhta Foundation, attributes Dubai’s cosmopolitan atmosphere to Urdu’s widespread popularity as a medium of speech.
“In choosing Dubai, we embrace the city’s thriving Urdu-speaking community, a testament to the rich demographic diversity in the heart of the UAE,” Saraf was quoted by Khaleej Times.
He added, “In the current geopolitical climate, Jashn-e-Rekhta in Dubai stands out as a beacon of cultural unity, transcending political divides and fostering connections through the universal language of poetry and shared cultural heritage.”
The festival will feature over 75 globally renowned artists and speakers from India, Pakistan, and other regions.
Prominent figures such as Bollywood couple Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi, Pakistani human rights activist Arfa Sayeda Zehra, Pakistani film industry couple Sameena Peerzada and Usmaan Peerzada, and Pakistani actress Mahira Khan have been invited to the festival.
They will be several notable performances, including ‘Urdu Tehzeeb aur Rishton ki Lazzat Ki Lazzat’, ‘Dozakh’, ‘Naghmo’n ki Maseehaii’, and ‘Raqs-e-Naa Tammam’.
It is expected to attract 15,000 to 20,000 visitors from the GCC region and overseas including India and Pakistan.
Attendees will have the chance to explore an Urdu Bazaar, showcasing art, handicrafts, and books on various stalls.
The literary festival will conclude with a grand international mushaira ‘Gehan aur Dhoop’ featuring remounted Urdu poets.
The festival, which was cancelled in 2019, returned to Dubai, showcasing the resilient spirit of Urdu culture and its capacity to unite diverse backgrounds.
Tickets are available for purchase on Platinumlist and are currently available for grabs, so act fast to secure your spot.
How to get there?
- To reach Zabeel Park by car, follow Sheikh Zayed Road.
- Opt for the Dubai Metro Red Line, and alight at Al Jafiliya Metro Station. Gate 1 is just a few hundred yards away.
- The nearest bus station is Al Jafiliya, with various buses connecting to the area, including those to Dubai Mall and Jebel Ali.
- Direct any Dubai taxi to Zabeel Park; it’s easily recognizable and familiar to most drivers.
Facilities available at the venue
- The biggest car parking areas are near Gate-1, 2 & 4.
- Free WiFi throughout the park.
- Clean and hygienic sanitation
- Prayer rooms