The 16th death anniversary of legendary Qawwal Aziz Mian is being observed today (Tuesday).

Born on April 17, 1942 in Delhi, in British India, Aziz Mian obtained his M.S. degrees in Arabic, Persian, Persian literature, Urdu literature and History from the University of Punjab in Lahore.

He began his learning in the art of Qawwali under the tutelage of Ustad Abdul Waheed Khan at the age of 10 years. He spent 16 years to train in the art at Sufi shrine of Data Ganj Bakhsh in Lahore.

Apart from giving breath-taking performances, Aziz Mian was also known for writing his own poetry for Qawwali recitals.

He was given the title of Fauji Qawwal (Military Qawwal) in early days of his career as he performed mostly in military barracks for army personnel in those days.

His breakthrough performance was when he performed before the Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi in 1966 where he won the first prize and a gold medal from then ruler of Iran.

He died of complications of hepatitis in Iran’s capital Tehran on December 6, 2000. He was in Iran to perform on the invitation of the Government of Iran.

Aziz Mian was laid to rest in the shrine city of Multan.