Sunday September 19, 2021

Noted Pashto writer Zaitoon Bano passes away

September 15, 2021

PESHAWAR: Noted Pashto writer, poet and broadcaster Zaitoon Bano breathed her last at the Lady Reading Hospital after a brief illness here on Tuesday.

She was 83.

Her funeral prayer was offered at the Worsak Road and she was laid to rest the same day.

Born in Sufaid Dhere village in the suburbs of Peshawar on June 18, 1938, Zaitoon Bano had done her masters in Pashto and Urdu literature as a private candidate and later served as senior producer at Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) at the Peshawar station. She also taught at various educational institutions.

Late Zaitoon Bano was married to a noted Hindko and Urdu poet and writer from Peshawar, Taj Saeed, who remained editor of a famous magazine “Qand”, published by Premier Sugar Mills in Mardan besides making other literary contributions.

The Zaitoon Bano-Taj Saeed duo enjoyed a wide respect in literary circles for their works in Pashto, Hindko and Urdu languages, respectively. Her husband had passed away a few years ago.

Zaitoon Bano had to her credit more than two dozen Pashto and Urdu books, including popular Pashto fiction collections Hindara, Maat Bangrre, Jawandi Ghamoona, Khoboona, Kachkol, Zama Dairy, Naizurry.

Her Urdu publications included Sheesham ka Pata, Berge Arzoo, Bargad

ka Saya and Waqt ki Dehleez par.

She had contributed a number of features plays for Pakistan Television

and Radio Pakistan Peshawar on a variety of social issues, including women rights.

In recognition of her services for Pashto and Urdu language and literature, she was decorated with as many as 15 national literary awards including the coveted Presidential Pride of Performance Award.

The Khyber Pakhtun- khwa Culture Directorate had published a huge Pashto collection of Zaitoon Bano short stories titled Da Shagu Mazal (Journey through sands) about three years ago.

This 700-page collection covers short stories written between 1958 and 2017. She also had a lone Pashto poetry book, Manjeela (head cushion).