ISLAMABAD  - Renowned Urdu poet Qateel Shifai remembered on his 12th death anniversary on Thursday. 

Qateel Shifai was born on 24 December 1919 in Haripur, Hazara Division, British India. He adopted Qateel Shifai as his pen name in 1938 under which he was known in the world of Urdu poetry. “Qateel” was his “takhallus” and “Shifai” was in honor of his ustaad Hakim Mohammed ‘Shifa’ whom he considered his mentor. 

In 1946, he was called to Lahore by Nazir Ahmed to work as the assistant editor of the monthly ‘Adab-e-Latif’, a literary magazine published since 1936. His first ghazal was published in the Lahore weekly ‘Star’, edited by Qamar Jalalabadi. In January 1947, Qateel was asked to pen the songs of a film by a Lahore based film producer. The first film he penned the lyrics for was “Teri Yaad” (1948). He won numerous awards as a lyricist.

Many of his poem collections were published, one amongst them being “Mutriba” which got him the highest literature award in Pakistan. Over 20 collections of verse and over 2,500 songs for Pakistani and Indian films were published. 

His poetry has been translated into numerous languages including Hindi, Gujarati, English, Russian and Chinese.

Qateel Shifai received the ‘Pride of  Performance Award’ in 1994 for his contribution to literature, ‘Adamjee Award’, ‘Naqoosh Award’, ‘Abbasin Arts Council Award’ and ‘Amir Khusro Award’ in India.

He died on July 11, 2001 in Lahore.