Five days after 93-year-old Urdu poet Anand Mohan Zutshi Gulzar Dehlvi returned home after recovering from Covid-19, he passed away Friday. The veteran poet’s son Anoop told The Indian Express, “He had his lunch at 2 pm, he was doing just fine. A few minutes later, he fell unconscious.”
An ambulance rushed him to Kailash Hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival. “Doctors did a check-up and told us he probably suffered a cardiac arrest and passed away. It’s shocking because he was doing better today. He kissed me on my forehead in the morning, had milk with biscuits, and had more small meals after that,” said Anoop.
On May 28 night, Dehlvi fell sick, and was taken to a hospital, where his Covid-19 test came positive on May 31. Early June 1, he was shifted to Sharda Hospital in Greater Noida, where he was admitted in the Covid-19 ICU. On June 7, he returned home after beating the virus.
A Kashmiri Pandit, Dehlvi was born to poet parents in Old Delhi, and was the editor of ‘Science ki Duniya’, the only science magazine published in Urdu by the government, and launched in 1975. He is also credited with opening Urdu schools across India. Till last year, the poet, who would have turned 94 next month, would show up at mushairas.
His son came to Delhi in March to take his parents to Pune with him, but the lockdown was announced just days before they could leave. “First the lockdown, and then he fell sick. When he returned home, I was happy that we will all be together in Pune. He was in recovery and would assure us he would get better. I got a diet plan for him too. On Thursday, I was figuring out an air ambulance to take him to Pune. I was so excited that he would celebrate his birthday with his grandson. My sister is in the US and can’t even make it,” said Anoop.
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