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Shabana Azmi Travels  To Her Native Place For The  First Time Since The Pandemic



Shabana Azmi

Shabana Azmi  leaves for  her ancestral village  Mijwan  on  12  November.

And she isn’t going alone. Accompanying her are her brother Baba Azmi his family and some very likeminded  friends who are setting up  landmark   business enterprises in Mijwan

Shedding light on this  historic visit Shabana  asks, “Yes we are heading to Mijwan in a  big paltan.We haven’t been  to Mijwan during the pandemic. So there is  a huge backlog  of  work to be taken care of. Baba is going  location  hunting. Kakul Hai, a lecturer of psychiatry at Delhi University wants to write  a book on the  women of Mijwan. He is also  accompanying us.My friend Shaili Sathyu  who  is also accompanying us, will set up a  course in lifeskills and dramatics in Mijwan. Arun Martin  is accompanying us for teacher’s training  programme. Neeraj Aggarwal from Rural Shores wants to set up a computer centre.”

    Shaili Sathyu, daughter  of  filmmaker M S  Sathyu is the artistic director of Gillo Repertory Theatre, an organization that specializes in theatre for young audiences. She has written and directed over ten plays, including ‘Kyun-Kyun Ladki’, ‘Mister Jeejeebhoy and the Birds’, ‘She-He-Shey’, Gulaabo Aur Parizad and ‘Chidiya, Udd!’, among others. Since 2003, she has conducted creative drama and theatre workshops for children and teachers across India. Under her leadership, Gillo Repertory Theatre has produced more than 20 plays, staged over 500 shows and reached over 110,000 children in India.Shaili is a recipient of the Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar from the Sangeet Natak Akademi. She has served as the Honorary Secretary of ASSITEJ India chapter (The International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People) for two years.

Shabana gets misty-eyed when she thinks  of  all the  progress in their  ancestral village. “How  happy  and  proud Abba (father  Kaifi Azmi)  would have been  to see all this! If I’ve been able to make  his dream come true, then I consider myself blessed.”

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