Address by Governor at the 81st birthday celebrations of Smt. Usha Mangeshkar at Jal Vihar (Banquet Hall) Raj Bhavan, Mumbai
Address by Shri Ch Vidyasagar Rao, Governor of Maharashtra at the 81st birthday celebrations of Smt. Usha Mangeshkar and Puraskar Vitaran organized by Print View and Vidya Vaibhava Prakashan at Jal Vihar (Banquet Hall) Raj Bhavan, Mumbai at 6 pm on 6th March 2017
Shri Ramraje Naik Nimbalkar, Hon’ble Chairman, Maharashtra Legislative Council, Smt Meena Khadikar, today’s Satkar Murthi Smt Usha Mangeshkar, Smt Juhi Chawla, Shri Paradkar, other distinguished invitees, ladies and gentlemen,
At the outset I extend a very warm welcome to each one of you to Raj Bhavan.
I thank Hon’ble Chairman of Maharashtra State Legislative Council Shri Ramraje Naik Nimbalkar for inviting me to this programme and thereby giving me an opportunity to convey our appreciation to Smt Usha Mangeshkar and to the entire Mangeshkar family. I also congratulate the Vidya Vaibhav Prakashan for organizing this programme.
According to old records of Raj Bhavan, the Banquet Hall, where all of us have assembled today, was built by the British Governors between the years 1868 and 1875. It was built in anticipation of the visit to India by the Prince of Wales who later became King Edward VII.
Over the years, this Hall witnessed Royal visits, Darbars, Balls and Banquets. After Independence, it has witnessed State Banquets and dinners in honour of visiting Presidents and Prime Ministers of various countries. The Darbar Hall, just opposite this Hall, has a bigger sitting capacity. However, since the Darbar Hall is under repairs, we could not invite more people.
Nevertheless, I am very happy that we are having this unique and unusual programme to felicitate Smt Usha Mangeshkar on her 81st birthday in this hall. An occasion like Sahastra Chandra Darshan is unique in one’s life and it is only appropriate that we are having this function at this Hall.
Even though Bharat Ratna Lata Mangeshkar could not attend the function today, I would like to mention that Lata Didi has had a long association with Raj Bhavan.
Let me tell you in some details. The State of Maharashtra was formed in the year 1960. The main official function to unveil the map of Samyukta Maharashtra was held in Raj Bhavan just outside this Hall on the evening of 30th April. The map of Maharashtra was unveiled by our Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. The programme had started 1130 in the night and ended at 12 midnight. The programme was attended by the first Governor of Maharashtra Sri Prakasa, the first Chief Minister Yashwantrao Chavan, Governors of various States, freedom fighters, diplomats and officers from various countries. It was on that historic occasion that Smt Lata Mangeshkar had sung the Pasaydan lines from Jnaneshwari under the guidance of Music composer Vasant Desai.
I am pleased to state that we have created a 150 feet high flag post and installed a plaque commemorating this historic moment at the very place where this function had taken place. I will request all of you to visit the place before leaving the Raj Bhavan premises.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I am not any authority to speak on music; though I am a good listener of music. To my mind, India produced perhaps the finest music of the millennium in the 20th Century. It may be classical music, carnatic music or the composite light music. The 20th Century was truly a golden century as far as music is concerned.
If one single family contributed to the enrichment of Indian music during the 20th Century, it has to be the family of the Mangeshkars.
Several generations in India have grown up listening to the music of the Mangeshkars. Every Mangeshkar is a stalwart, every Mangeshkar is uniquely gifted, every Mangeshkar is in a class of his own. The Mangeshkars are truly the most gifted Gandharvas of India.
The appeal of the Mangeshkar’s music has crossed geographical boundaries of nations and States. Their music is as popular in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Arabia or even in Central Asia as it is in India. The Mangeshkars are the cultural ambassadors of India to the world.
Usha ji sung many popular songs. Many of these songs are as fresh as they were when she sung. Every new generation has grown up crooning her songs. I am truly delighted that she is being honoured on her Sahastra Chandra Darshan. I congratulate her on her 81st birthday and wish her the best of health and happiness to continue to produce good music.
I take this opportunity to congratulate ace shooter Tejaswini Sawant for doing the State proud with her spectacular achievements in Air Rifle shooting.
Smt Juhi Chawla is not just a much loved film star, she is also a caring human being. She is working for the differently abled children and trying to bring smiles on their faces. I applaud her for her brilliant work and wish her well in her future endeavours.
Before I conclude, I thank, once again, the organizers for organizing the felicitation of Smt Usha Mangeshkar in Raj Bhavan. I have one wish to the God. May Usha Mangeshkar live for 100 years, may we have a grand function to felicitate her and, if I may ask, I should also live to witness the programme !!
Jai Hind ! Jai Maharashtra !!