Mamata pained

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, an avid fan of Manna Dey, expressed her grief in an extensive post on Facebook.

Mamata wrote: “Manna da is no more. I am deeply pained. To the entire music world, his passing away is an irrepairable loss. He was Bengal’s pride. There is no substitute for Manna Dey. My memories of one of the biggest singers of our times touches me with deep nostalgia.” 

She also recalled her last meeting with the legendary singer, who has sung not just in Bengali and Hindi films, but in other languages such as Punjabi, Bhojpuri,  Kannada and Malayalam.

“I met him last at Bangalore to personally hand over the ‘Bisesh Sangeet Maha Samman’ award. That time I offered him to come to Kolkata. He was happy to hear this and expressed his desire to do so. But it could not happen,” her post stated. 

Currently on a tour of the Darjeeling hills, Banerjee recalled before a gathering at Kalimpong on Thursday about her long association with Dey’s songs and how these songs helped her through various emotional ups and downs.

On hearing the news, Mamata got in touch with Dey’s daughter, Sumita, and requested her to conduct the final rites in Kolkata. Sumita, however, told the chief minister that Dey had earlier expressed his wish to be cremated in Bangalore. 

Prez, PM offer condolence 

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice-President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi were among the national leaders to condole the demise of veteran playback singer Manna Dey, reports DHNS from New Delhi. “In the passing away of Manna Dey, the nation has lost a veteran playback singer, a versatile artist of extraordinary ability and a creative genius who mesmerized listeners with his enchanting voice,” Mukherjee said.

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