Son of Well-known Urdu poet and film lyricist Jan Nisar Akhtar and Safia Akhtar, teacher and writer, Javed Akhtar belongs to a family lineage that can be traced back to seven generations of writers. The highly respected Urdu poet, Majaz was his mother's brother and the work of Muzter Khairabadi , his grandfather, is lookedupon as a milestone in Urdu Poetry. Alongwith his ex-partner, Salim, he scripted super hits like, 'Zanjeer', 'Deewar',' Sholay', 'Haathi Mere Saathi', 'Seeta Aur Geeta', 'Don', 'Trishul', etc. Salim-Javed as a writer-duo gave to Amitabh Bachchan and to Indian Cinema the memorable persona of the 'Angry Young Man'. After the split from his partner Salim (in 1981), he has written a list of successful films, notable amongst them are; 'Sagar', 'Mr. India', 'Betaab', 'Arjun' and 'Lakshya' etc.
Javed Akhtar started writing Urdu poetry in 1980. His first collection of Nazms and Ghazals entitled, 'TARKASH' has had a very successful release in 1995. It is already in its ninth edition in Hindi, and fifth edition in Urdu. It has received rave reviews both as a book and as India's first audio book brought out by PLUS MUSIC. The audiobook has sold more than a hundred thousand copies. Javed Akhtar has written a large number of poems against communalism, social injustice, National Integration and for Women's Rights. Ministry of Human Resource Development has declared his song, beckoning the misguided youth to come forward and build the country, the National Anthem for Youth in 1995.
Javed Akhtar is an avid reader with a keen interest in politics. His poetry reflects both his political awareness and his literary concerns. He is married to Shabana Azmi, India's most respected actress and social activist and Ex-Member of Parliament.