The queen of melodies stated, “I had a neighbour, who once told me that when the most famous singer of Egypt, Om Kulthum, had passed away, the flags had been kept half-mast across the country. ‘The same must be done for you,’ he said in all sincerity and with due respect.”
Being the songstress that she is, Lataji obviously had been through a lot of awkward moments of people attempting to compliment her. But this flag-waving comment took the cake. She said, “I didn’t know how to react to this honour that I was being promised. I told him, ‘Array bhai, when I wouldn’t be there, how does it matter to me whether the flag is half-mast or not?’”
The nightingale of India has a fantastic sense of humour, which is not always appreciated by those around her.
Decades ago, when one of her favourite music composers fell in love with a besura singer, Lataji had made a classic quip. She had said, “I always thought love was blind. Now I know it’s deaf as well.”