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Om Prakash Soni’s demise a big loss for Urdu journalism

– Shakilur Rahman

Dec. 8: In a condolence statement, Urdu Development Organization paid rich tribute to the services rendered by Om Prakash Soni to Urdu journalism.

Urdu Development Organization (UDO), United Muslims of India (UMI) and leading Urdu journalists, in a statement, expressed their deep sorrow and grief over the death of Amritsar-based senior Urdu journalist Om Prakash Soni and expressed condolences to his family, calling his death a great loss for Urdu journalism.

Former member of parliament, editor-in-chief of weekly Akhbar-e-Nau and ex-ambassador of India, M. Afzal, expressing deep grief and sorrow over the death of Om Prakash Soni, said that he respected the high values of journalism throughout his life and was practiced Journalism with impartiality and truthfulness. He believed in communal harmony which can be observed in his writings. With his death, a chapter of Urdu journalism in Punjab has been closed. Remember that he died in Amritsar on November 22, 2023 at the age of 94.

National President of Urdu Development Organization, Dr. Syed Ahmad Khan said that the significant role played by Om Prakash Soni in keeping Urdu journalism alive in Punjab cannot be forgotten. In recognition of his services, he was awarded the Mahfuzur Rahman International Urdu Day Award for Journalism by the Urdu Development Organization on the occasion of World Urdu Day in 2018.

Senior journalist Sohail Anjum said that with the death of Om Prakash Soni, the future of Urdu journalism in Punjab has become dark. He came to India from Lahore during the partition of India and made Amritsar his second home. He published many newspapers and magazines in addition to a newspaper called ‘Nai Lahrein’. He has published several books on the subject of Urdu journalism.

Sohail Anjum mentioned his long association with him and said that in 2016, he had published a collection of Soni’s essays, ‘Baatein Akhbar Navison Ki’, which had gained a lot of popularity. While the second collection of his articles ‘Caravan-e- Sahafat’ has been published by Dr. Rehan Hassan.

Senior journalist Maudood Siddiqui remembered Soni Sahib’s journalistic services in Punjab and said that the void created by his death in the journalism of Punjab will not be filled soon.

The editor of Rahnuma-e-Taaleem said that Prakash Soni had been writing articles for their magazine regularly. His article was published even in the October issue. It should be noted that Soni sahib had been writing articles in Delhi Urdu Akademi’s magazine Evan Urdu routinely. Several of his articles were published in Aajkal. He served in the editorial department of the Urdu daily Hind Samachar published from Jalandhar for several decades.

Several personalities associated with the Urdu language, literature and journalism have also expressed their condolences on his death. In particular, the names of Dr. Lal Bahadur, Dr. Faraz Uloom, Tahseen Ali Asarvi, Hakeem Aftab Alam and Muhammad Imran Qanoji etc. are worth mentioning.

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