THE ARRIVAL OF SHAHINSHAH OF IRAN IN LAHORE 1950 – THE EXHIBITION AT ALHAMRA OF PAINTINGS OF M A R C.
If I recall reading that the Shahinshah of Iran was the first foreign Head of State to visit Pakistan. Various press cuttings reveal his activities in Lahore. For example, on 5th March, 1950, he is practicing gun shooting at the Governors House Lahore, while being watched by Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan, and Governor General Khawaja Nazimuddin. A rare official photograph. There is a clipping related to his visit to the Lahore Fort. And then there was a visit to Alhamra Lahore, to see an exhibition of paintings of M.A. Rahman Chughtai.
In the photograph one can see the Shah of Iran, Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan, Governor Abdur Rab Nishtar and others, as well as the artist M.A. Rahman Chughtai. A rare moment in history. A painting was presented to the Shah of Iran. Later a show was planned in Tehran under RCD but that never happened due to bureaucratic inner struggles. More on that later.
The Shah of Iran carried love for Chughtai art, and it was passed on to his Queen Farah Deeba, who was willing to help Chughtai Museum through the Farah Deeba Foundation for the Arts. A royal invitation was extended to Chughtai Museum to participate in a show in Tehran, based on Chughtai’s work on Omar Khayyam. But due to political changes that never happened too. But certainly, the Iranians love of art was ever there, and love for Chughtai art more profound in same way.