Jashn-e-Rekhta: Virtual Urdu Festival

5-6 September 2020, online


Project description

The Bagri Foundation is thrilled to support Jashn-e Rekhta (JeR), the largest Urdu festival in the world, to come to the UK. In 2020, JeR UK creates an immersive and interactive platform that echoes the experience of Rekhta’s unique Delhi festival since 2016. 

JeR presents, for the UK, 32 digital sessions across three stages over the weekend. Some highlights, as well as those made especially for the UK, include:

Javed Akhtar and Manoj Muntashir, poets and lyricists from two different generations present ‘Cinema – Kal aur Aaj’ – a conversation around films, lyrics and Urdu poetry.

Azra Raza, the highly acclaimed physicist, scientist and author presents the world of Ghalib in her grand style.

Yawar Abbas relives the golden years of radio with fellow broadcasters Raza Ali Abidi and Pervaiz Alam.

Sania Saeed, renowned Pakistani actor, Tanuja Chandra, Indian film director, and Nasreen Munni Kabir, filmmaker and author, discuss the contribution of Urdu to the world of cinema and television.

Tina Sani and Shilpa Rao present ‘Reviving Ghazals for Millennials’.

Along with these sessions, the UK audience can enjoy some of the most popular events from JeR India’s archives including storytelling, dance, music, poetry recitation, and discussions with major artists across the world.

Urdu & Rekhta in the UK: Urdu is listed as the fourth main language in England and Wales and ranked third in the top 10 most spoken languages in London. Its popularity can also be gauged from Rekhta’s follower count. rekhta.org, the world’s largest repository of Urdu literature, is followed by nearly 226,000 people in the UK including 211,000 in England and 84,000 followers in the city of London alone, many of them, naturally, young people.

Organiser’s bio

Rekhta Foundation UK is a registered UK charity, Rekhta Foundation UK aims at preservation & promotion of languages, literature and culture of South Asia with a particular focus on Urdu. The Foundation is working towards engaging renowned academics and cultural leaders in Urdu from across the globe to spread awareness amongst the diaspora.