Rahat Kazmi: Won with his strength
By Anis Shakur
Oh God! Give me the ability to change the things I can, and the courage to bear the things I can’t, and the
wisdom to know the difference.
The above statement holds true to the television great, Rahat Kazmi.
From movie actor to television artist, from critic to talk- show host, from speaker to academician, and from teacher to social
thinker, Rahat has proved resourceful, ingenious and pioneering in the past forty-one years.
Rahat Kazmi was born on June 30, 1946, in Simla, India. Rahat’s
father was a lawyer by profession, and he wanted his son to follow his footsteps. Rahat completed his high school education
He successfully completed and received his law degree in Lahore.
Additionally, Rahat received his master’s degree in political science from Government college and a master’s degree
in English literature from Punjab university.
Rahat started his working life as an information officer in 1968
in the Pakistani civil services. After serving for eight years, Rahat resigned from the civil services in 1976.
Rahat’s profound love of acting took him irresistibly to the
forefront of Pakistani entertainment. Rahat’s first stab at acting came when he was studying for his Bachelors in Government
college, Lahore. Likewise, Rahat’s first Lahore television appearance was in 1965 when he participated in a university
In 1967, Rahat took part in a Rawalpindi television quiz show known
as ‘Mayaar.’ Further, Rahat lent a well-balanced and modulated performance in the 1967 Rawalpindi television play
Furthermore, Rahat’s meritocracy of work is quite evident
in the television play ‘Koltar,’ opposite Nayyar Kamal.
Rahat’s un bowing perseverance and industriousness led to
one success after another. The popular television play ‘Anarkali,’ is one such success story.
Highly sophisticated artists like Rahat made the Pakistani television
where it is today.
Reverting to Rahat’s performance, the television play ‘Auraaq,’
was a formidable achievement. The playwright, Fatima Surraiya Bajia, crafted a brilliant play.
The habit of translating novels for the television drama serials
gives Rahat the greatest ability of dramatization. Rahat’s sumptuous television version of the Russian novel, ‘Fathers
and sons,’ by Ivan Turgenev, is a case in point. ‘Fathers and sons’ Urdu version, ‘Qurbatain aur faaslay,’
was telecast from the Rawalpindi television in 1974. Rahat was super smartly dubbed as Ghazanfar or ‘Bazarov,’
in the novel, and Sahira was smartly dubbed as ‘Aaliya.’
In the play, ‘Ghazanfar’ was a medical science student.
He fell in love with ‘Aaliya,’ but did not wanted to admit it. Because his extreme views on women prevented him
from doing so. He appeared so charismatic and filled his vivid character with enormous emotional power as well. Bad luck,
Ghazanfar’s untimely, tragic demise due to typhus makes it a very heartfelt play.
Amazingly enough, Rahat married Sahira soon after ‘Qurbatain aur faaslay,’ was telecast over television in 1974. Both their children, a son and
a daughter, are very intelligent like their parents.
Most importantly, Rahat teamed up with the best people, who made
him look good by helping him display more of the full range of his acting talents. Talking of his acting career, Rahat was
instrumental in the mega hit television drama serial, ‘Teesra kinara.’
Rahat also used to be the talk-show host in ‘Rahat Kazmi show,’
telecast in the 1970s from the Pakistani television.
Essentially, Rahat is an adornment to the Pakistani television.
Add to all this is an intelligent wit, a gaiety and verve that are inexhaustible. In his show business career, which spans
to forty-one years, Rahat has acted in numerous television plays. Foremost is his sweeping drama serial, ‘Dhoop kinaray.’
Rahat played the role of ‘Dr. Ahmer,’ while Marina Khan appeared as ‘Zoya,’ in ‘Dhoop kinaray.’
In fact, Rahat was dramatizing socially impact stories before anyone
else had the courage or imagination to do it—and in the process he changed lives. Rahat gave magnificent performance
in the television drama serial, ‘Karavan.’
Perhaps, Rahat learnt early in life that the secret of success lies
in an indomitable commitment to honesty in motion. A man of many projects, Rahat was also behind such super hit television
drama serials as ‘Nangey paaon.’ Rahat gave superfluous performance as ‘Azeem Sahib,’ in ‘Nangey
Similarly, Sahira Kazmi’s television drama ‘Hawwa ki
beti,’ was a great success. Sahira’s daughter played the lead role and astonished viewers through her commendable
Rahat’s name became a household word and millions of admirers
have applauded his memorable character in the mega hit Lahore television drama serial ‘Ragoan mein andhera.’ Rahat’s
acting was superlative as deputy superintendent of police. Writer, Yunus Javed, producer, Rashid Daar.
It is laudable indeed, that Rahat found a perfect unanimity of tone with his directors and writers. Rahat’s magnificent
performance in the super hit Pakistani television drama serial ‘Parchaiyan,’ is worth watching. Writer, Haseena
Moin, adapted from Henry James English novel, ‘Portrait of a lady.’ Cast included Rahat- Sahira Kazmi- Shakeel-
The list of Rahat’s television plays that have become gold standards goes on and on like the Pakistani television
drama serial, ‘Ehsaas.’ In ‘Ehsaas,’ Rahat once again teamed up with Marina Khan, writer, Shahid Kazmi,
director, Shehzad Khalil.
Rahat debuted in the film ‘Aaj aur kal,’ in 1976. Theatrical
release was on April 2, 1976. Director, Syed Sulaiman. Rahat- Shabnam played the lead roles. Expecting to impress an open-minded
audience, Rahat came out with superb acting in ‘Aaj aur kal.’
Best of all, Rahat remains open to change, professionally and personally.
Rahat’s role is laudable in the 1976 film ‘Insaniyat.’ Director, Syed Sulaiman, Rahat- Barbara Sharif played
the lead roles.
Rahat’s immense composure is quite conspicuous in the 1977
film ‘Mehmaan.’ Cast included Rahat- Barbara Sharif.
Rahat worked in the film ‘Suraj bhee tamashai.’ Rahat’s
way, as an actor, he is come completely into his own.
Rahat, whose life and achievements inspired others, came out with
credible performance in the film ‘Muthi bhar chawal,’ June 16, 1978. Rahat played side hero opposite newcomer,
Shehla Gul. While Sangeeta and Nadeem played the lead roles. Directed by Sangeeta. For
the sake of record keeping, ‘Muthi bhar chawal,’ is adapted from Rajendar Singh Bedi’s novel, ‘Ik
chadar melee see.’
Rahat keeps the viewer engaged in the story in the film ‘Pakeeza,’
April 20, 1979. Director, Pervez Malik, Rahat played side hero opposite Naveen Tajik. While Shabnam- Nadeem played the lead
Rahat, a popular Pakistani signature, played opposite Najma in the
film ‘Khandaan,’ March 28, 1980, director, Riaz Malik.
Rahat is also known for his role in the film ‘Saima,’
May 2, 1980. Director, Mohammed Javed Fazil, cast included Rahat- Barbara Sharif- Nadeem.
Rahat’s hard work and pride in his work soon caught the eye
of other directors. For instance, director Zafar Shabab cast him in the 1980 film ‘Aazmaish.’ Starring, Rahat-
Shabnam- Roohi Bano- Shahid.
Overwhelmed by Rahat’s ebullient personality and ingenuity,
director Athar Shah Khan cast him in the 1982 film ‘Aas paas.’ Cast included Rahat- Nadeem- Barbara Sharif- Rani.
Acting is his crucible, and Rahat was steeled for success. That
is where his drive came from. Rahat worked in the 1982 film ‘Jaan-e-mun.’ Director, Laeeq Akhtar, cast included
Rahat- Barbara Sharif.
Having achieved his ambition in the mass media, Rahat has moved
on to other projects like education. It is heartening to note that Rahat is the founder, owner and forerunner of an academic
institution in Pakistan.
Rahat’s great respect and open admiration for education for
everyone has led him to deliver lectures and speeches on the importance of education. In the transaction, Rahat has influenced
scores of students.
Rahat’s message seems to have no borders. After all, if highly
enlightened and magnetic personalities like Rahat Kazmi do not care about education, who will?