Kamal Ahmed Rizvi (1930-2015)

The actor, born in 1930, was best known as the creator of the long-running sitcom, Alif Noon

Editorial December 18, 2015
Kamal Ahmed Rizvi. PHOTO: FILE

With the death of Kamal Ahmed Rizvi in a Karachi hospital after a protracted illness, an era has come to an end. A curtain has come down for the final time on a period during which some of the finest stage plays and sitcoms in the country’s history kept our theatre scene and PTV alive, and made television a lively medium that provided a forum where different ideas of import could be aired. Mr Rizvi, born in 1930, was best known as the creator of the long-running sitcom, Alif Noon, which featured him alongside Rafi Khawar, best known as Nannah. Between them, the two actors brought to the public’s attention different social ills and dilemmas plaguing society through comedy. The show engrossed tens of millions of viewers across the country with the series starting in 1965, and airing for the last time in the 1980s. Mr Rizvi’s character in the show will not be forgotten anytime soon by all those who watched Alif Noon. Since those times, there has rarely been an effort on television that has touched hearts through the important art of satire so effectively.

Mr Rizvi’s works go beyond Alif Noon. He was also a playwright, director, painter and writer. He was known for his sometimes sharp tongue, but also his devotion to the arts. In his final days, the young man who had moved to Karachi from Bihar at the time of Partition was deeply saddened by what he described as the sharp decline of the performing arts and of theatre, which he had in so many ways pioneered in the country. His death exposes the deep void in the Pakistani theatre and television industries as in recent years the country has produced hardly anyone of the stature of Mr Rizvi. His death then marks the end of an age, an age in which people knew how to laugh at themselves and could look at societal ills from a lighter angle, while at the same time think a little harder about correcting the wrongs prevalent in society.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 19th, 2015.

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IBN E ASHFAQUE | 6 years ago | Reply May Allah rest his soul in peace.
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