Harmonium maestro Ustad Mehmood Dhaulpuri dead

The 55 year-old Padma Shri artiste who passed away at 5.30 am today, was hospitalised for the past three months, according to family sources.

"He was hospitalised for the past 55 days and has been in the ICU at the St Stephen's Hospital for the past 40 days since he was been suffering from heart and breathing problems. He passed away at 5.30 am in the morning," Zakir Dhaulpuri, his youngest son told PTI.

The maestro who resided in Lakshmi Nagar, East Delhi is survived by his wife, three sons and two daughters. The eldest son of Ustad Mehmood Dhaulpuri is also a noted sarangi player.

Dhaulpuri who became the first harmonium musician in the country to be honoured with a Padma Shri in 2006, recieved his early training from his grandfather Ustad Buddha Khan and later was trained by his father Ustad Nasir Ahmad Khan of the Delhi gharana.

He has accompanied famous artists like Begum Parween Sultana, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, Pt Bhimsen Joshi and Pt Jasraj on concerts across the world.

"Ustad Mehmood was a great harmonium player. I was acquainted with him from a very young age and met him at a lot of music festivals. He was a naturally humble and very graceful person and was in highly sought after by classical vocalists. Almost every vocalist used to ask him to accompany him," said sarangi exponent Ustad Amjad Ali Khan.

Fakruddin Dhaulpuri, the late musician's eldest son who was in Amritsar for a performance with Gulam Ali Khan last evening said, "I have heard my father talk of his concerts in Russia and Paris when he accompanied Begum Parween Sultana. He has been accompanying several famous artists and has also been awarded by the Rajasthan government."

The last rites of the veteran musician will be conducted in his ancestral town Dhaulpur in Rajasthan, where the family has a 300-year-old house.

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