Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Hindu : News / National : M.F. Husain gets Qatar nationality

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    • N. Ram
    The black-and-white line drawing eminent artist M.F. Husain shared with The Hindu. Though this exemplar of secular art did not apply for it, he was conferred citizenship by Qatar.
    • M.F. Husain, India’s greatest and most celebrated artist, has been conferred Qatar nationality - something that is very rarely given. The artist gave me this news from Dubai early Wednesday morning by reading out the few lines he had written on a black-and-white line drawing that he released to The Hindu.

      “Honoured by Qatar nationality” but deeply saddened by his enforced exile and the need now to give up the citizenship of the land of his birth, which he has lovingly and secularly celebrated in his art covering a period of over seven decades. India does not allow dual citizenship, even though it has instituted the category of the ‘Overseas Indian Citizen.’ Mr. Husain will no doubt seek to acquire OIC status after completing the due procedures.

      It is important to note that Mr. Husain did not apply for Qatar nationality and that it was conferred upon him at the instance of the modernising emirate’s ruling family.

    • His work now is mostly towards two large projects, the history of Indian civilisation and the history of Arab civilisation. The latter was commissioned by Qatar’s powerful first lady – Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser al Missned, wife of the emirate’s ruler, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani. The works will be housed in a separate museum in Doha.

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