Shaukat Siddiqi (Urdu: شوکت صدیقی; 20 March 1923 – 18 December 2006) was a Pakistani writer of fiction who wrote in Urdu language. He is best known for his novels Khuda Ki Basti (God's Village) and Jangloos.
Early life and career
Siddiqi was born on 20 March 1923 in a literary family of Lucknow, British India. He gained his early education in his home town and earned a B.A. in 1944 and an M.A. (Political Science) in 1944. After the partition of India, he migrated to Pakistan in 1950 and stayed in Lahore, but soon permanently settled in Karachi. His early days in Pakistan were full of financial trouble and political opposition, which he soon overcame. He accompanied Zulfikar Ali Bhutto on several foreign tours.
He was an active member of the Pakistan Writers' Guild and a member of the Progressive Writers Association which was then and still is a part of the larger organization, the Progressive Writers Movement in the India-Pakistan subcontinent. Shaukat Siddiqui worked at the news-desks of the Karachi newspapers Times, Pakistan Standard, and the Morning News. He finally got promoted to be the editor of the Karachi Urdu language newspapers Daily Anjaam, the Weekly Al-Fatah and the Daily Musawat, before finally saying goodbye to journalism in 1984.
Siddiqi's first short story, "Kaun Kisi Ka", appeared in Weekly Khayyam in Lahore, Pakistan. In 1952, his first collection of short stories, Teesra Admi, was brought out and proved to be a great success. Subsequently, other collections of short stories followed: Andhere Dur Andhere (1955), Raaton Ka Shehar (1956) and Keemya Gar (1984).
His magnum opus is Khuda Ki Basti (God's Village), which has appeared in 50 editions and has been translated into 26 languages. It has been dramatised time and again. Its English translation was by David Mathews of London University.
- Teesra Admi (1952)
- Andhere Dur Andhere (1955)
- Raaton Ka Shehar (1956)
- Kamingah (1956)
- Khuda Ki Basti (1957)
- Keemyagar (1984)
- Jangloos (1988)
- Char Deewari (1990)
Awards and recognition
- 'Kamal-i-Fun' (Lifetime Achievement) Award in literature in 2003 by the Government of Pakistan in collaboration with the Pakistan Academy of Letters
- 'Adamjee Award' for literature in 1960
Death and legacy
He died on 18 December 2006 of cardiac arrest in Karachi at the age of 83, leaving behind a wife, two sons and three daughters.
Shaukat Siddiqui was known to use the technique of socialist realism in his writings and did not leave his characters in the quagmire of apathy and inaction. But, instead, tried to suggest to them to assert themselves and change their own destiny. He portrayed the life of a section of Karachi's poor very successfully in his writings. Siddiqui's commitment to the truth and his faith in the destiny of mankind guided him in his literary journey.
- Writer Shaukat Siddiqui passes away Dawn (newspaper), Published 19 Dec 2006, Retrieved 25 July 2018
- Novelist Shaukat Siddiqui dies The Nation (newspaper), Archived from the original on 21 October 2007, Retrieved 25 July 2018
- Profile of Shaukat Siddiqui and his Adamjee Award in 1960 info Retrieved 25 July 2018
- KARACHI: Shaukat Siddiqui gets award Dawn (newspaper), Published 12 July 2003, Retrieved 25 July 2018