Queen of Kirana Gharana cremated

Gangubai Hangal given a State funeral

Fans of Gangubai Hangal break down beside her body, during the funeral procession in Hubli on Wednesday. DH PHOTO

Her fans sobbed and chanted Gangajji Amar Rahe (long live Gangubai) when her elder son Baburao lit the funeral pyre.

Policemen fired three volleys in the air and sounded the last post and reversed their guns as a mark of respect. She was cremated at Unkal on the outskirts of the city, where the State Government is constructing a 'Gurukul for Hindustani Music' in her name.

She died on Tuesday morning at a private hospital in the city after a prolonged illness.
Thousands of people from various sections of the society had lined up on either side of the road en route to the Gurukul to pay their last respects to the 97-year-old queen of Kirana Gharana, who was a house-hold name in the twin cities of Hubli and Dharwad.

Her body was wrapped in the tri-colour and kept in a flower bedecked gun-carriage. Her last journey began in the decorated van from her home, Ganga Lahiri, at 10.30 am and reached the cremation premises after passing through Ashok Nagar, Vishweshwarnagar, Raj Nagar and Shakti Colony at 12.30 pm.

Speaker Jagdish Shettar, Council Chairman Veeranna Mattikatti, Major Industries and District In-charge Minister Murugesh Nirani placed the wreath on the body of Gangubai, who had received more than 50 awards, including the Padma Vibhushan.

The district administration had announced holiday for schools and colleges on Wednesday as a mark of respect to the departed soul.

The district administration, the Hubli-Dharwad Municipal Corporation and the police had made elaborate arrangements for the smooth cremation.

Among the dignitaries who attended the funeral included Mayor Veeranna Savadi, veteran journalist Patil Puttappa, MP Prahlad Joshi, former ministers H K Patil, Basavaraj Horatti, MLAs Chandrakanth Bellad, Veerabhadrappa Halaharavi, Seema Masuthi, retired additional chief secretary Cheeranjivi Singh, former MP I G Sanadi, Hubli-Dharwad Police Commissioner Raghavendra Auradkar, Kannada and Culture Department Secretary Jayaram Raje Urs, Kannada and Culture Department Director Manu Baligar, Naganath Wodeyar, Shakuntala Bharani, Veena Hanagal, Sulabhadatta Neeralgi, Gayatri Deshpande, Jnaneshwar Varang, Ashok Nadgir, seers of different mutts, religious heads and others.

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