New Delhi: The legendary Indian singer Lata Mangeshkar breathed her last at Mumbai’s Breach Candy Hospital on Sunday, February 6, 2022 morning.
Mangeshkar, 92, made her name in the world of Bollywood and her voice has rung out on television sets, on crackly airwaves and from movie theatres for most of independent India`s three quarters of a century, earning her the name “the Nightingale”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with other celebs attended the last rites of Lata ji, where her body was wrapped in the Indian flag, had been paraded through the streets of her home city Mumbai on a truck decorated with flowers.
Thousands of people gathered round Shivaji Park, where she was cremated, climbing walls and trees to get a glimpse of the proceedings and pay their own respects however they could, despite police erecting barricades and restricting public entry.
The government will observe state mourning with the flag at half-mast through Monday, the Home Ministry said.
Mangeshkar died of “multi-organ failure after more than 28 days of hospitalisation post COVID-19”, said Pratit Samdani, who was treating her at Mumbai`s Breach Candy Hospital, according to Reuters TV partner ANI.
Several political leaders, Bollywood celebrities rushed to pay their last respects. She was accorded full state honours at Shivaji Park.
From Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Nitin Gadkari, Yogi Adityanath, Rahul Gandhi, LK Advani and many Bollywood stars including Akshay Kumar, Kangana Ranaut, Sonu Sood, Dia Mirza among others mourned her demise.
Born in 1929 in pre-independence India, Mangeshkar began singing in her teens, and in a career spanning 73 years sang more than an estimated 15,000 songs in 36 languages.
She enthralled everyone with her lilting voice and sheer range, singing everything from patriotic songs to romantic numbers, both in films and albums.
The world of Bollywood – where movies were unthinkable without at least six songs and where everything from romance to grief was narrated with the help of a ballad – was where Mangeshkar cut her teeth.
Known for soft-spoken nature and wearing a saree, her hair in two schoolgirl-like braids, Mangeshkar received India’s highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 2001. She was awarded France`s highest civilian honour, the Legion of Honour, in 2009.
(With inputs from Reuters)