Friday, July 22, 2005

Recent Writings

Recently I published two pieces: China a hit in Hollywood, Bollywood a flop (Asia Times Online) and Being Imrana (

If you read them, do let me have your comments.


Susan Abraham said...

Zaf, I think your online articles are super. And so beautifully presented with their attractive layouts. Makes you feel you can write a whole lot more, can't you.
There's something I'd like to expand on with regards to what you said in one of the pieces, the homegrown authors, identity bit. But I'll do it in an entry on my blog. Congratulations, Zafar. Well done! And I look forward to reading more. best wishes

Manzoor Khan said...

Zafar bhai,

I read your take on Imrana's issue. I still would like to dig more into how the journalist was told what he was told, even though it was not particular to Imrana's case.

Are you suggesting that the journalist went to the Mullas and asked them something like "what does Islam says about a girl being raped by her perverted father-in-law?" And, in response the Mullas told him - just for his information, and not as a fatwa - that the "Nikah" would be void in such a case.

What I am trying to understand is from where this absurd idea of "marriage becoming void" emerged? Fatwa or no fatwa. For, as you mentioned in the article, this idea is NOT islamic.

I also agree that media got in Imrana a hot cake, which sold quite well. (The latest hot cake for the Indian media is "the marriage of Don's daughter.")

May be the Mullas of Deoband could have done something more clearify their point, that is if they had any. (I really want to know who delivered the absurd idea).

Another problem I think with the "Shariyat" is that it's highly inspired by the mediaval script and not much by the Quran. This is a huge debate, but this hasn't done any good to the Muslim community. For example: as a punishment of adultery, stoning a person to death is an idea given by medival scripts, and NOT by the Holy Quran. The Quran prescribes publicly wipping of the guily, if the charge is proved. Now, who do we listen to: the Quran or....

Yes, indeed. The basic problem of Indian Muslims is what you quoted. But, I believe, and I am sure - Inshallah - the situation shall change provided people like you and me actively work towards it. Actually, few are already on board:

Impetus is an NGO (the site is under construction) that has been conceptualized by - guess who - the IT geeks belonging to the Indian Muslim community. Yours truly has, of late, been involved with it, though in a pretty modest way though. But yes, things are rolling -:)


Manzoor Khan said...


Please ignore all the grammar and spelling mistakes -;) in my comment posted above. I didn't bother to re-read it.

Not a good practice though.

Zafar Anjum said...

Thanks Susan. I look forward to reading your comments on the theme of homegrown authors and indentity.

Zafar Anjum said...

Hi Manzoor

Thanks for your thoughtful remarks.

As for your first question, yes, that's how it happened. I you get this story if you read the Deoband seminaryt PR officer's version. The journalist in question was, if I remember correctly, from Rashtriya Sahara.

Manzoor, I recommend a book for you to read. It is titled Good Muslims, Bad Muslims by Mehmood Mamdani of Columbia University. It's brilliant and it will give you a perspectieve on what is going on in today's world, especially for Islam and Muslims.

Thanks again.

Preetam said...

On Bollywood flopping, well you can find bollywood movies in China, most pirate shops have couple of latest bollywood hits on sale. There is a decent following of movies from India.

Also I think the Chinese movie market is over hyped. Hardly anyone goes to the movies these days when pirate DVDs are so easy to find. Most cyber cafes have the latest movies on their hard drives.

The chinese people generally don't like these newer movies, they complain that these movies are just made for the westerners. It is very hard to find a chinese youngster who say that Zhang Zi Yi is their favorite actor.

Preetam Rai

Manzoor Khan said...

Yes, my book seller of the A.A. Hussain Book Shop, Hyd, did told me that the book is worth a read. And, now, as you have also recommended it, I would like to get a copy for myself and read.


Suhail said...

Not sure if you are aware of this. But MG has outed this quite sometime back. I blogged about it here. None of the other MSMs seems to have picked up that thread. The case is now in court, and God knows when the decision will be taken. The alleged journalist was from Dainik Jagran. Read the complete MG report here.

Manzoor Khan said...

Dear Suhail,

I really wanted to dig more into how the media screwed it up, the moment I got some hint from Zafar's article. Now, I think I have enough material, and might not have to dig really hard to know the facts.

Thanks, for quoting MG in your article. I will go through it and post my comments.

Thanks, for mentioning about it in Zaf's DreamInk.

Zafar Anjum said...

Thanks Sohail, Preetam and Manzoor for your comments.

Preetam, I tried visiting your blog but guess it was down.

How is it going Manzoor? Are you writing on the Emrana issue?

Scribbler said...

I don't know why it's important for Hollywood to come to Bollywood... for global recognition? Maybe... otherwise, Bollywood and all its variants in India combine to form the biggest movie factory in the world... As for China, I agree with what preetam says... Not just because I'm from India, but I sincerely think this aping or looking for approval from Hollywood is not necessary... we are our own film industry and a succesful one at that.

Manzoor Khan said...

Nothing more to write, as Suhail and MG have already made the commendable effort.

However, would try and make more and more people read that MG's article.

Scribbler said...

I've had something more to say about this here.
Just making my point...

Zafar Anjum said...

Hi Scribbler,

Thanks for your comments. I saw your blog. Looks nice.

If you are happy and contented with your Bollywood films, you are free to do so. But I am not happy with what Bollywood largely churns out. I am all the time comparing our movies vs their movies (Hollywood, or for that matter any other wood).

My point is all about globalization and capital going into areas where growth is promising. If you can appreciate this premise, then you can appreciate my point in the article.

$150m is no big deal but it shows the trend.