Legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar had a very special relationship with Bangladesh as she stood by the people of this country when they were in dire need of support and assistance.
During the Liberation War in 1971, Lata Mangeshkar along with many other Indian artistes performed in a number of stage programmes to raise fund for the war and mobilised international opinion in favour of the country.
The legendary singer recalled her musical performances in Bangladesh in a tweet on 14 September 2019.
In the tweet, Lata Mangeshkar recounted her memories with Ajanta Shilpigoshthi during her visit to Bangladesh in 1971.
The tweet, posted in Hindi, said, “Namashkar. Immediately after the Liberation War in 1971, I took part in many programmes with the troupe of Sunil Dutt in Bangladesh. That time we went to all the places by army aircraft.”
She travelled to various parts of India and performed in many stage shows to raise fund for the Liberation War and food and medical assistance for Bangladeshi refugees in West Bengal.
In a newspaper interview, Lata Mangeshkar recalled that how she along with Asha Bhosle, Kishore Kumar, Hemanta Mukherjee, Mohammad Rafi, Manna Dey, Salil Chowdhury and many others performed for the country that was involved in an all-out war to defeat a well trained and brutal occupation army at the time.
She was equally popular among multiple generations in Bangladesh. She carved out a special place in the hearts of the Bangla-speaking people by singing playback on around 200 songs for Bengali movies, including ‘Prem Ekbar Eshechhilo Nirobe’, ‘Rongila Bashite’, ‘Nijhum Shondhyay’, ‘Ke Prothom Kachhe Eshechhi’, ‘Sat Bhai Champa’, ‘Ja Re Ure Ja Re Pakkhi’, ‘Bolchhi Tomar Kane’, ‘O Mor Moyna Go’, ‘Ashar Srabon Manenato Mon’ and ‘Chole Jete Jete Din Bole Jay’.
She sang ‘O Dadabhai’ in Raktakta Bangla, a Liberation War-based Bangladeshi film, directed by Mamtaz Ali in 1972.
A pall of gloom descended on the cultural arena of Bangladesh since the news of the death of the great singer spread.
Celebrated Bangladeshi singer Runa Laila recalled her sisterly relationship with Lata Mangeshkar and their almost daily exchange of messages. Terming Lata’s voice ‘honey dripping’, she thanked her ‘Didi’ for her unbounded blessings.
Noted singer Ferdousi Rahman, Sabina Yasmin, Kumar Biswajit and Tapan Chowdhury also expressed profound shock at the death of Lata Mangeshkar and shared their memories with ‘The Nightingale of India’ on social media.