Saturday, 28 May, 2022

Pandit Birju Maharaj passes away

Pandit Birju Maharaj passes away

Kathak legend Pandit Birju Maharaj died at his home in Delhi in the early hours of Monday after suffering a heart attack, according to news agency PTI. He was 83.

A recipient of the India’s second-highest civilian award, Padma Vibhushan, he was born Brij Mohan Nath Mishra on February 4, 1937, in a well-known family of Kathak dancers. The news comes just days after his nephew and disciple Pt Munna Shukla passed away following a brief illness at 78.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his condolences to the family and fans of the Kathak legend. On Twitter, Modi wrote, “Deeply saddened by the demise of Pandit Birju Maharaj ji, who gave Indian dance forms a special recognition across the world. His passing is an irreparable loss to the entire world of art. My condolences to his family and fans in this hour of grief.” 

President Ram Nath Kovind called the demise of the Kathak dancer, “the end of an era,” adding that his passing away, “leaves a deep void in the Indian music and cultural space”.

 Pandit Birju Maharaj donned several hats during his lifetime. While he was best known as a Kathak dancer, he was an equally prolific singer, poet and painter.