By Arbaz Ahmed Janjhi
HYDERABAD, Dec 09, 2023: Caretaker Provincial Minister for Information, Minority Affairs, Social Protection, and President of Arts Council of Pakistan Karachi, Muhammad Ahmed Shah, made a significant visit to Hyderabad alongwith Provincial Minister for Culture, Junaid Ali Shah. The visit included the inauguration of the “Shah Latif Children’s Festival” at the Sindh Museum in Hyderabad.
The festival, organized by the Sindh Culture Department, witnessed the presence of notable figures such as Manoj Kumar, Taj Joyo, Mukhtiar Malik, Saad Samejo, and Secretary Sindhi Language Authority Ehsan Danish. Muhammad Ahmed Shah, addressing the inaugural function, emphasized the cultural richness of Sindh and the importance of promoting Sindhi culture.
During his speech, Shah highlighted the role of great Sufi poets like Shah Abdul-Latif Bhittai, stating, “People like Shah Latif, Bulleh Shah, Mian Muhammad Bakhsh, Khushal Khan Khattak, and Sachal will be remembered as long as the world remains.” He emphasized the need to understand and act upon the teachings of Shah Latif and commended the Department of Culture for its efforts in promoting Sindhi culture.
Caretaker Provincial Culture Minister Junaid Ali Shah echoed these sentiments, acknowledging the excellent work of the Sindhi Language Authority in translating Shah Latif’s work into multiple languages. He stressed the importance of not only reading but also understanding and acting upon the teachings of Shah Latif.
The Shah Latif Children’s Festival featured various activities, including Shah Ki Vaiyan, tableaus, debate competitions, and cultural musical programs. Students from schools across Sindh participated in the festival, showcasing their talents and celebrating the rich cultural heritage of the region.
Following the festival, Muhammad Ahmed Shah and Junaid Ali Shah visited various stalls, interacting with students and awarding prizes to successful participants. The festival’s goal was to expose students to the poetry of Shah Abdul-Latif Bhittai and celebrate the cultural diversity of Sindh.
Later in the day, Muhammad Ahmed Shah and Junaid Ali Shah attended a “Meet the Press” event organized by the Hyderabad Press Club. The caretaker provincial information minister addressed concerns raised by the journalist community, assuring them of resolving issues related to the execution of journalist Jan Muhammad Mehr’s murderer.
Shah emphasized the importance of journalism as a watchdog and pledged to prioritize the welfare of working journalists. He announced plans to speed up public projects initiated by previous governments and allocate funds to journalists based on merit. The caretaker information minister also expressed his commitment to building bridges with political parties and moving forward collaboratively.
The visit concluded with Muhammad Ahmed Shah distributing prizes to athlete winners at the Sports Gala held at the Hyderabad Press Club. Additionally, the provincial minister visited the historical temple of Kali Mata and Bethany Brothren Church, addressing concerns raised by the priest and pastor regarding the challenges faced by their respective communities.
In a concluding note, Muhammad Ahmed Shah called for a meeting on Saturday, underlining his commitment to addressing community issues and fostering collaboration among diverse groups in the region.