SIALKOT -  Sialkot-based renowned calligrapher Bashir Kanwar has been living a very miserable life due to the lack of government support for promoting the art in the region.

Despite spending almost whole of his life in promotion of the art, he still remains unable to get government recognisation for his life-long and matchless services.

Bashir Kanwar, 76, resides in a rented house in Sialkot city’s congested Talwara Mughalaan locality. He has to do a lot to make both ends meet. Talking to the newsmen, Bashir said, “I have spent almost whole of life in the promotion of the art without support from the government besides making thousands of paintings, which got many praises from the art-lovers.”

Despite the repeated requests made by him for the government’s financial support, the government has not yet paid any attention. “I have made thousands of paintings but I have no place to display them,” he added. “Now, I have been running my one-room art academy namely “Bashir Kanwar Arts Academy” at Sialkot to promote the art in the region without governmental support.”

He expressed grave concern over the situation that there was no government art academy in Sialkot. He urged the government to patronise him and do not let the arts die in the region.

Bashir claimed that he had written the “Kalma-e-Tayyaba” on the seed of rice and made paintings of Khana-e-Kaaba and Masjid-e-Nabvi (PBHU) on Daal which gained praises at international level.

His forefathers had migrated to Sialkot-Pakistan from India. Born in 1942, Bashir had also made the titles of most the newspapers and magazines preparing the logos of more than 80 percent factories in Sialkot.

He urged Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif to provide him with land for establishing an art academy. He said that government support will help him keep the art alive. Meanwhile, the local social, educational, literary and political circles have expressed grave concern over the miserable condition of Bashir Kanwar.

They said that though he received several certificates from the government but he still remains an unsung national hero. They added that he deserves “Pride of Performance” award.