Lata Mangeshkar, one of India’s music icons who defined music and melody for generations with her voice, has died at the age of 92.
She was hospitalised on January 11 after being infected with what her doctor confirmed to be Covid-19, but passed away from multi-organ failure on Sunday, after more than 28 days of hospitalisation.
Ms. Mangeshkar, who was active in the music industry for more than 70 years, saw her voice recorded for music in more than Indian 2,000 films.
Dr. Pratit Samdani, who was treating her at Mumbai’s Breach Candy Hospital, confirmed she passed away after being hospitalised for Covid according to Reuters TV partner ANI.
‘I am anguished beyond words,’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote on Twitter.
She will receive a state funeral, and the government will observe state mourning with the flag at half-mast through Monday, the Home Ministry said in a statement.
‘The kind and caring Lata Didi has left us,’ the prime minister wrote, using an affectionate term for older sister.
‘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.’
Born in 1929 in pre-independence India, Ms. Mangeshkar began singing in her teens, and in a career spanning 73 years sang more than an estimated 15,000 songs in 36 languages.
She enthralled listeners with her lilting voice and sheer range, singing everything from patriotic songs to romantic numbers, both in films and albums.
Ms. Mangeshkar made her name in music for Bollywood movies. Her big break came when she recorded the hit ‘Aayega Aanewala’ for the movie Mahal (1949).
After that, the Nightingale would go on to become the singing voice for almost every leading lady, according to Britannica.