Currently residing in Canada, Ashfaq Hussain Zaidi, was born on January 1, 1951 in Karachi. He is a leading modern Urdu poet and an author of more than 10 books of poetry and literary criticism. He is considered by many as
Ashfaq Hussain Zaidi
Currently residing in Canada, Ashfaq Hussain Zaidi, was born on January 1, 1951 in Karachi. He is a leading modern Urdu poet and an author of more than 10 books of poetry and literary criticism. He is considered by many as the foremost expert on the life and works of great Urdu poets Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ahmad Faraz and also on Progressive Writers Movement.
Ashfaq Hussain, who lost his mother at the age of 13, is the eldest son of eight siblings. He was born in a lower middle class family. He struggled throughout his academic years by working various part time jobs. He gained his Master (MA) Degree in Urdu Literature from the University of Karachi in 1974.
Ashfaq Hussain was elected Vice President of the Students Union of Urdu Department in 1973. He then spent one year as lecturer at Government Degree Science College, Karachi.
Before migrating to Canada, Ashfaq was working as a Programme Officer at the Arts Council of Pakistan. He migrated to Canada in March 1980 and currently resides in Brampton, a suburb of Toronto, where he started his business in Travel and Tourism industry.
Ashfaq founded the Writers Forum of Pakistani Canadians in 1982 and was subsequently elected President of the organization. He then established U. I. Publishers, through which he edited and published the quarterly Urdu journal, Urdu International Canada until 1988.
Ashfaq Hussain started hosting an Urdu program on Asian Horizons in 1980. After initially working part-time, he joined Asian Television Network full-time when ATN became a 24 channel in 1997. He currently serves as an Associated Producer at Asian Television Network, Newmarket. He is regularly hosting the following TV shows: Urdu Rang, Asian Horizon and Asian Digest.
He is considered by many as the foremost expert on the life and works of great Urdu poets Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Ahmad Faraz and also on Progressive Writers Movement. For his contributions to Urdu literature, Ashfaq was awarded the Presidential Pride of Performance from the government of Pakistan. He has won many other awards including Maulana Mohammad Ali Johar Award (Delhi, India), Saleem Jafri International Award (Doha, Qatar) and Asian Television Network Life Time Achievement Award 2007 (Newmarket, Canada).
His books include: Faiz Ek Jaiza (1977), Aitabar (1979), That Day Will Dawn (1985), Neendar Nal Rishta (1986), Ham Ajnabi Hain (1992), Faiz Habib e Amberdast (1992), Faiz ke Maghrabi Hawaley (1993), Faiz shakhsiat aur fun (2006), Ahmad Faraz: yadoon ka ek sunehra waraq (2008), Aashian Gum Karda (2009).
Amongst the thousands of celeberities whom Ashfaq Hussain has interviewed since the 1980s, notable includes:
Dilip Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Javed Akhtar, Kader Khan, Ghulam Ali, Zia Mohyeddin, Tahira Syed, Talat Aziz, M. F. Husain, Sudhir Narain, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ahmad Nadeem Qasmi, Jamiluddin Aali, Munir Niazi, Ahmad Faraz, Professor Gopi Chand Narang,
Ali Sardar Jafri, Farooq Leghari, Iftekhar Arif, Dr Ludmila Vaseleva.
In February 2010, ATN provided coverage of various events of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Ashfaq Hussain provided sports broadcasting of many events, such as freestyle skiing and long track speed skating. On February 13, Hussain and special Olympic guest analyst Salman Bazmi provided play-by-play analysis of Canada's first olympic medal at the games; a silver medal by Jennifer Heil in Freestyle skiing, women's moguls. The following day, Ashfaq and Bazmi provided play-by-play analysis of Canada's first ever gold medal at an Olympic games held in Canada.
In July–August 2012, ATN provided coverage of various events of the 2012 London Olympics. Ashfaq Hussain, again accompanied by special Olympic guest analyst Salman Bazmi, provided full coverage of archery (men's and women's, team and individual) and rhythmic gymnastics (team and individual). On July 28, Ashfaq provided play-by-play analysis of United States upset victory over three time defending men's team gold medalist South Korea.