Ah Ghulam Nabi Khyal, opinion 6 November, 2023


Ah Ghulam Nabi Khyal
Tribute by Rameez Bhat
( The writer can be reached at



On Sunday October 15, 2023, we lost the outstanding writer of Kashmiri literature Ghulam Nabi Khyal Sahib a Sahitya Akademi award-winning journalist. Ghulam Nabi Khayal, a prominent figure in both literature and journalism, passed away at his home in Rawalpora, Srinagar on a Sunday morning at the age of 85.


Khayal initiated his career as a radio news reader in Radio Kashmir during the 1950s. He later contributed to numerous prominent news organisations in India, including the Illustrated Weekly of India, India Today, The Associated Press, and various radio stations, including the Voice of America. Khayal was a prolific writer, with a portfolio of over 30 books in Kashmiri, English, and Urdu. His notable works encompass ‘Gashik Minaar’ (Luminaries), which earned him the Sahitya Akademi award in 1975, and his Kashmiri translation of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. In 2015, he returned his Sahitya Akademi award in protest against the mistreatment of minorities in India.

Ghulam Nabi Khayal was a well-known Kashmiri writer and journalist who made significant contributions to both Kashmiri literature and journalism. His writings primarily revolved around the culture, traditions, and social issues of Kashmir. Khayal was recognized for his ability to capture the essence of Kashmiri life and its rich cultural heritage in his literary works. Additionally, his journalistic career played a pivotal role in promoting Kashmir’s culture and heritage.

He also devoted five years of service to the Culture Academy, where he held various positions, including editor, chief editor, and correspondent for numerous national and international publications, including notable ones such as The Mahaz, The Kong Posh, and The Watan.

Khayal’s commitment to the preservation and promotion of the Kashmiri language and literature was highly commendable. His legacy is celebrated in the context of Kashmiri culture and literature. He’s known as the advocate of the Kashmiri language and the preservation of the region’s rich heritage.

He used his works to shed light on the complexities of Kashmiri society, including its traditions and folklore.

As a journalist, he was known for offering insightful reporting and commentary on local and regional issues. Through his work, he provided a platform for the voices of the Kashmiri people and drew attention to the region’s unique cultural and social aspects. Ghulam Nabi Khayal’s influence extended to both the literary and journalistic circles in the region. His legacy continues to inspire writers, journalists, and enthusiasts of Kashmiri culture, as his work remains a valuable source for understanding the multifaceted nature of Kashmir and its people.

During his prolific career as a Kashmiri writer, Ghulam Nabi Khayal authored several books. While an exhaustive list of his works isn’t available, some of his notable publications include “Gulrang,” a collection of short stories, “Kashmiri Natak,” a book on Kashmiri theater, “Tsol Ta Thal” and “Buch,” which are collections of essays, and “Shahrar,” a collection of humorous writings. These works have significantly impacted Kashmiri literature and continue to be cherished by readers interested in the rich cultural and literary heritage of Kashmir.

Comprehensively Ghulam Nabi Khayal’s career made a lasting impact on Kashmiri literature, journalism, and the preservation of Kashmiri culture, leaving an indelible mark on the region’s cultural and literary landscape.

May the departed soul be granted eternal peace by Almighty Allah!