City anchor: Lane and square named after him stand testimony to Ghalib’s fan following

Bhai Vaidya, who was a corporator in the late 60s, said the Pune Municipal Corporation had readily agreed to give Ghalib's name to the lane and the square. "Mirza Hamid Baig had a good reputation as an intellectual and a writer. He, along with the then local corporator Rashid Khan, had come up with the idea to observe Ghalib's death centenary. Out of my love for Ghalib, I happily accepted the invitation to become chief guest at the function," Vaidya told Newsline.

Veteran former corporator Rajan Kachi said the lane and the square named after Ghalib created awareness about the poet among common Puneites at that time. "The city was geographically very small then as compared to today. The lane and the square named after Ghalib gradually became prime places in the city," he said.

Hailed as the crown and glory of Urdu and Persian poetry, Ghalib (December 27, 1797-February 15, 1869) is considered as one of the most intense poets of all time, especially for his profoundly fresh commentary on religion and romance that raises many eyebrows even today.

Many Puneites, however, said they were unaware about the city having any lane or square named after Ghalilb. "I really did not know this. It is a big surprise," said actor Vibhavari Deshpande, who is fond of Ghalib's poetry.

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