ISLAMABAD - May 6 hit a blow to the feminism movement in Pakistan as renowned Urdu and Punjabi writer and a prominent voice of feminism movement, Dr Farkhanda Lodhi passed her on the day and departed for her eternal journey. She was 72. She passed away after protracted illness. Dr Farkhanda was author of several Urdu and Punjabi books including Shehar kay Loag (1975), Aar Cee (1976), Maindak Dada (1976), Bahan Bhai (1976), Channay Day Ohlay (1984), Vizay Ki Sada (1980), Khawaboan kay khait (1990), Piyar Ka Panchi (1995), Bahadar Nagar Ka Shahzada (1995), Harday wich Trairan (1998), and Kiyun (2006). Her novel 'Hasrat-e-Arz-e-Tamanna was a milestone in Urdu fiction. She also translated works from other languages such as Chinese, Gurmukhi, Norwegian, and Turkish languages into Urdu. She was also awarded Presidents Pride of Performance award for Excellence in literature, and Buleh Shah Life Achievement award besides numerous awards for her literary works. She was equally popular with Punjabi circles of Pakistan and India. She was acutely conscious of the remaining flickering years of her life. Once in her interview, she equated them with a dying candles stubborn flame before it totally burns out. Her life-long contribution to Urdu and Punjabi literature had exacted a fairly heavy toll on her health. Before retiring in 1997 as the chief librarian at the Government College, Lahore, Mrs Lodhi rearranged the librarys 150 years old record. As a consequence of handling chemical-laden books, she contracted a serious illness of the throat, which caused her to temporarily lose her voice. Though Farkhanda Lodhi could speak haltingly after some years, she could not be able to follow the trail of her last Urdu publication, Romaan ki maut, published in 1997. Paralysed for the past many years, she could not hold a pen long enough to overpower the readers with her literary deluge of novels and short stories in Punjabi and Urdu. Instead, her spirited mind forced her to channel her energy to write Punjabi poetry. And so, the writer refused to accept physical incapacities. She was honoured for her work when she received the best writers award in Punjabi literature from the Punjabi World Foundation in the year 2001. She was the sixth one to get this award. Talking on the occasion, she mentioned that she never wrote for recognition and awards, but, her feelings and environment forced her to write. Farkhanda Lodhi was the first woman to get the World Punjabi Foundations prestigious award. She was a strong woman who believed in empowered women in our society. All her life, she struggled to give confidence to women folks that they are the backbone of the society, and the women should realize their potential and should not bow to the male-domination. In most of her novels, she portrayed the characters of her women very bold and strong. Once she was asked that if she was leading to feminism unconsciously. No, not unconsciously, but the effort is rather deliberate on my part. I feel the ache in my heart when a woman is victimised or treated unjustly. Obviously, as a writer how else can I express myself? Men have always been grossly unfair to women. To this day, we have not been able to get out of their clutches. How can our country progress where a woman is supposed to walk a step behind man? I know this might sound too harsh, but the fact is that even the prophets have discriminated against women. Everything exists for a man; a woman only gets the breadcrumbs. It is evident in my writing what I think of women and how I feel. It is we, the women, who refine society, whereas men are......they are wanderers and rogues. I remember while talking to Ashfaque [Ahmed] sahib, I said that man is a moment, but woman is life. I have always tried to establish the formative character of a woman. Many women activists could not fill the vacuum that her death has created.