Legs and Munto

Once upon a time in 1953, a picture ‘Bathing Beauty’ was released in the regal cinema of Lahore. In the neighbourhood of regal cinema, there was an office of Hamid Akhtar, a renowned writer, journalist and film producer of his time. In his office, Saadat Hassan Munto was a regular.

One day when Munto entererd his office, Munto said to Hamid Akhtar,” Hamid Akhtar, did you see this new movie Bathing Beauty?”, Upon a “no” from Hamid, Munto insisted him to view the movie upon his earliest free time. Next time, Munto came and again inquired Hamid, whether he watched the movie or not. Hamid again said, no and Munto was livid with him and again stressed him to watch the film. This time Hamid promised again.

It was a sheer coincidence that due to his hybrid busy routines, Hamid Akhtar didnt manage to see the movie, but out of curiosity, he read about the movie, and he came to know that first time in this movie the underwater camera was used to picturize the swiming girls. It was a hot technology in those days.

Upon Munto’s again askence, Hamid questioned him,”Dear, whats so special about that movie?” Munto said with gusto in his famous special style, “Cold flesh, smell and smoke”. “Hamid Akhtar, the beautiful legs which have been shown in that movie, couldnt be seen in the whole Pakistan, I challenge You,” Munto said dreamily.

Now after some 54 or so years after that movie, Pakistan has changed drastically. Munto couldnt believe that now we can see what he couldnt talk about just sitting in our homes.


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