Lata Mangeshkar’s death: Govt declares two-day state mourning; Prez, PM, other leaders pay tributes

President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tributes to the legendary singer, terming her demise “heart-breaking” and “a void that cannot be filled”. Politicians across party lines also expressed condolences on Mangeshkar’s death and paid tributes to her.

“Government of India has decided that as a mark of respect, two days of State Mourning will be observed from Feb 6 to 7. During State Mourning National Flag will be flown at half-mast from Feb 6 to 7 throughout India and there will be no official entertainment. It has also been decided that State Funeral will be accorded to Kumari Lata Mangeshkar,” a statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs said.

In a series of tweets, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was “anguished beyond words”.

“The kind and caring Lata Didi has left us. She leaves a void in our nation that cannot be filled. The coming generations will remember her as a stalwart of Indian culture, whose melodious voice had an unparalleled ability to mesmerise people,” Modi said.

“I consider it my honour that I have always received immense affection from Lata Didi. My interactions with her will remain unforgettable. I grieve with my fellow Indians on the passing away of Lata Didi. Spoke to her family and expressed condolences. Om Shanti,” he added.

President Kovind tweeted, “Lata-ji’s demise is heart-breaking for me, as it is for millions the world over. In her vast range of songs, rendering the essence and beauty of India, generations found expression of their inner-most emotions. A Bharat Ratna, Lata-ji’s accomplishments will remain incomparable.”

“An artist born but once in centuries, Lata-didi was an exceptional human being, full of warmth, as I found whenever I met her. The divine voice has gone quiet forever but her melodies will remain immortal, echoing in eternity. My condolences to her family and admirers everywhere,” he added.

Modi said Mangeshkar’s songs brought out a variety of emotions and she closely witnessed the transitions of the Indian film world for decades. “Beyond films, she was always passionate about India’s growth. She always wanted to see a strong and developed India,” the PM said.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted, “Received the sad news of Lata Mangeshkar ji’s demise. She remained the most beloved voice of India for many decades. Her golden voice is immortal and will continue to echo in the hearts of her fans. My condolences to her family, friends and fans.”

Union Home Minister Amit Shah termed the death a “personal loss”. “A complementor of notes and music, Lata Didi, through her accomplishment of notes and spellbinding voice, imbued generations of India and the world with the sweetness of Indian music. Her contribution to the world of music cannot be expressed in words. Her demise is a personal loss for me,” Shah tweeted.

“I feel fortunate that I received the affection and blessing of Lata Didi from time to time. Through her incomparable patriotism, mellifluence and grace, she will continue to live with us. I express my condolences to her family members and fans. Om Shanti,” he added.

TMC chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said Mangeshkar was truly the nightingale of India. “I pay my heart-felt tribute to the departed icon of India, Bharatratna Lata Mangeshkar. While offering my sincerest condolences to her family and the billions of admirers that she leaves behind all over the world, I express my deepest sadness at the demise of the genius that the Nightingale of India truly was. Like all her fans and followers across the planet, I was also mesmerized by her voice and renderings, and felt grateful that she held Bengal and the artistes of the East so dear to her heart and so integral to her magnificent world of music,” she said in a series of tweets.

CPM leader Sitaram Yechury said Mangeshkar’s death was a personal loss for all Indians. “The popular singing voice which gave soul to hopes, dreams & aspirations of many generations of Indians since our independence is no more. It is not just film industry’s loss. It is a personal loss for all Indians. Lata Ji’s ‘Bhavam, Ragam, Talam’ – Bharat – will endure forever. Generations bow in respect. We will always carry her voice in our hearts. Deepest condolences,” Yechury tweeted.

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