Veteran lyricist and filmmaker Gulzar has been chosen for the prestigious Dad Saheb Phalke Award for the year 2013 for ‘outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian cinema’. With a career spanning over five decades, Gulzar has excelled in the fields of poetry, direction, production and screen-writing.

He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 2004 and the Sahitya Akademi Award in 2002. He even won an Oscar with AR Rahman in 2009 for ‘Jai Ho’ from the film Slumdog Millionaire and the same song also won him a Grammy. He has also won several Filmfare Awards for Best Lyrics, Best Story and Best Director.

Born in 1934, Gulzar began his career in 1956 and got his first break in the film Bandini (1964) as a lyricist. He then worked with leading composers like Sachin Dev Burman, Salil Chowdhury, Shankar-Jaikishan, Hemant Kumar, Laxmikant-Pyarelal, Madan Mohan, Rajesh Roshan, Anu Malik and the new age Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.

After writing dialogues and screenplay for films like Ashirwaad and Anand, Gulzar directed his first film Mere Apne (1971). He then went on making some memorable films like Parichay, Koshish, Aandhi, Mausam, Angoor, Achaanak, Maachis and Hu Tu Tu. Gulzar’s films brought out some of the finest works of all actors who worked with him.

Gulzar’s small screen ventures include creating the series like ‘Mirza Ghalib’ and ‘Tahreer Munshi Premchand Ki’. He wrote lyrics for Doordarshan serials ‘Hello Zindagi’, ‘Potli Baba Ki’ and ‘Jungle Book’.

Gulzar also wrote lyrics for Jagjit Singh’s albums ‘Marasim’ and ‘Koi Baat Chale’ and both these albums were immense successes. His poetry has been published in three compilations: ‘Chand Pukhraaj Ka’, ‘Raat Pashminey Ki’ and ‘Pandrah Paanch Pachattar’. His short stories are published in ‘Raavi Paar’ and ‘Dhuan’.

Gulzar remains one of the most iconic personalities of Indian Cinema and is without a doubt, the most deserving person for this honorable award.