Aligarh: Syed Mohammad Ashraf, a noted fiction writer and a distinguished alumnus of the Aligarh Muslim University, has received the prestigious “Ghalib Award” by Aiwan-e-Ghalib, New Delhi.
The award has been given to him in recognition of his meritorious services to Urdu prose.
Expressing happiness on this occasion, Prof Qamarul Huda Faridi, Chairman, Department of Urdu, AMU, said that Ashraf is considered one of the most prominent fiction writers in contemporary Urdu, and a source of pride for Urdu speakers for being the first to have qualified the civil services examination through Urdu medium.
Ashraf also has a distinction of having a knack for Urdu literature though he is an income tax officer, who recently superannuated as Vice- Chairman of the Income Tax Settlement Commission.
Ashraf created a niche for himself in Urdu fiction with his unique writing style and in recognition of it he has been honoured with several prestigious awards, including the “Sahitya Akademi Award”, “Iqbal Samman”, “Alami Farogh Urdu Award”, “West Bengal Qaumi Ekta Award”, “Urdu Academy Lifetime Achievement Award”, “Shamim Nikhat Award” and “Katha Award”.
Ashraf did his graduation and postgraduation from AMU with gold medals, and served as the Secretary of “Anjuman Urdu-e-Muallah” and editor, “Aligarh Magazine”. He was also the Secretary of the “University Literary Club”. Several students are pursuing M Phil and Ph D programmes at different universities on the creative acumen and literary achievements of Ashraf. His prominent fictional masterpieces include Daar Se Bichhde, Numberdar Ka Neela, Baad-i-Saba ka Intizar, Akhiri Sawariyan, and Qissa Nisf Sedi Ka. The publication of his promising novel, Mir Aman Qissa Suno is awaited.
In addition to his fictional works, Ashraf’s poetic collections, Salu Alaihi Wa Alihi, Sultan Al Hind, Rukh-e-Mustafa Hai Wo Aina, and Ashrah-i-Mubashshera, in praise of Prophet Muhammad have also received the public accolade.