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Veteran screenwriter Nasir Adeeb, best known for ‘Maula Jatt’ (1979) and its many cinematic offshoots, was recently honoured by the government of Pakistan with the Pride of Performance, one of the country’s highest civilian awards.

Adeeb received the award from Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar in a ceremony held at the Governor’s House, Lahore.

The screenwriter, who has earlier bagged several awards that include the National Award, is credited with writing more than 400 scripts including the one for ‘Janam Janam Ki Maili Chaadar’, the longest running theatre play in Pakistan that featured 1990s actress Madiha Shah in the lead.

Adeeb was briefly out of work as Punjabi cinema lost its appeal in the late 2000s, only to reemerge with greater confidence and spirit with director Bilal Lashari’s ‘The Legend of Maula Jatt’. It’s a film that could be seen as a tribute to the writer who created such immortal screen characters as Maula Jatt and Noori Natt, which built the movie careers of the late Sultan Rahi and Mustafa Qureshi. His dialogues from the original are also still remembered for their wisdom and wit.

‘The Legend of Maula Jatt’ is tipped to reintroduce Adeeb to a generation of post-millennials. The film that stars Fawad Khan, Hamza Ali Abbasi, Mahira Khan, and Humaima Malik, is said to be the most expensive Pakistani film ever made. It is due out on Eid Al Fitr in June.