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Katha Kathan, which was launched in February this year, has organised dramatised readings of two literary giants of India, Rabindranath Tagore with Saadat Hasan Manto in Bangla and Urdu to commemorate their birth anniversaries on May 13 at YB Chavan Auditorium, Nariman Point, Mumbai.

Through his initiative Katha Kathan, advertising veteran Jameel Gulrays has presented selected works of the masters to the people in Mumbai.

“The idea is not to showcase their literary might but to acquaint the audience with the works in their original form and as translations,” says Gulrays.

“Tagore’s Kabuliwala was read out in Bengali and Hindustani while Manto’s Taraqqi Pasand Urdu original was followed by a Marathi version.

The dramatised readings were rendered by a number of artistes —Madhubanti Mitra, Sumanto Bhattacharya, Rajesh Jha, Madhavi Ganphule, Priyanka Sharma, Vinay Rajwade, Atul Aglawe and Gulrays.

Katha Kathan has so far hosted four shows, titled “The Other Side of Manto” to showcase four less-known works by the writer.

“Manto is mostly remembered for his stark and dark writings on Bombay and Partition. But he wrote across genres. In order to present this, we had dramatised readings of his four short stories in the humour genre,” says Gulrays.

“We call all Indian languages ‘vernacular’, which upsets me. The word comes from the Latin term vernaculus, which means ‘slave’ or ‘low-bred’. It was okay for the Britishers to call our languages that but we have followed suit,” he added

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