Perhaps the drought on the Pakistani literature is due to the fact that most of the so-called literary figures have become well-off, and due to the commercialization of this field, the literary talent is not forth coming, as it used to, in the early years of independence.
In the literary essays we find myriad number of very funny and insightful events, which depicts the dismal financial plight of almost all giant literary personalities. Two of such figures were Hamid Akhter and Ahmad Rahi. Both were big names of literary horizon and their writings are still enriching the literature and their effects can still be felt.
Normally the writers, editors, journalists, novelists, poets, critics, all used to sit in some sort of tea house, coffee house, hotel or restaurant. Due to tight financial situations they used to take just half set of tea for just “Char anay” and then sat through whole day, discussing intricate literary points.
One day, just after some year to independence, Hamid Akhtar and Ahmad Rahi were sitting in the Paradise restaurant in Lahore. They were sitting there for many hours, they had taken their half set of tea, and were animatedly discussing some literary issue. Then all of a sudden Ahmad Rahi, started to look worried. He, in a low whisper, told Hamid that waiters of the restaurants were looking at them with hostile eyes for some unknown reason.
Hamid Akhtar looked around, and said,”Yar, they just want us to get out from here, to vacant seats for their new customers.”
Hamid, then added candidly,”I just had those “char anay” through which we have just taken tea, if you have some money, order tea or milk shake, otherwise get ready to get out of here.”
Ahmad Rahi, thought for a moment and then signaled waiter to come. As waiter came and asked for their orders, Ahmad Rahi, said in a royal tone,”Two glass water shake please”.