Statesman News Service
Bangalore, 24 October
Legendary playback singer Manna Dey (94) passed away here this morning following a prolonged illness.He was suffering from respiratory and renal problems. Last night, he was rushed to a private hospital; he had a cardiac arrest early this morning, following which he died.
The singer, who was in and out of the hospital for the past few months, had not been keeping well since his wife Sulochana passed away last year.
Dey had over 3,500 songs to his credit in a career spanning more than six decades in the Mumbai film industry, starting with the film Tamanna in 1943. He was known for his classical, romantic and comedy songs which he sang with elan. The melody and emotion of his numbers like Yaari hai iman mera/ yaar meri zindagi, Pyaar hua ikrar hua, Yeh raat bhigi bhigi, Ai meri zohrhazabi, Laga chunari me daag and Sunai haal dil wala echo even today, as does the Anand hit Zindagi kaisi hai paheli.
Dey was the recipient of the Dadasaheb Phalke award in 2007. Known to his fans and friends alike as Mannada, he had been living in Bangalore for the past ten years. According to his daughter Shumita, she shifted to Bangalore over 15 years ago and her father came soon after.
The singer’s body was placed at Ravindra Kalakshetra for a few hours this morning for people to pay their respects. While the state government did seek to ensure dignity to the late singer, the manner in which his body was handled, even kept out in the rain for a while before being moved into the Kalakshetra premises, left his fans seething.
Family unhappy with Bengal govt: Manna Dey&’s family rejected the request of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to bring his mortal remains to Kolkata for the last rites as they are upset that they had not been helped in bad times.
“I pleaded with Mamata Banerjee to help solve a case involving my cousin who siphoned off cash and jewellery from my father’s bank locker.
This would have helped me foot large bills of Narayana Hrudalaya hospital,” said Shumita. She criticised the Kolkata Police Commissioner for not taking steps to solve the case involving her cousin inspite of her having written to him. “We are not asking for any chanda (donation). My father had kept that money in good faith,” she said.