I remember an incident while doing a BSc from the University of Allahabad. I had gone to meet a senior announcer of All India Radio at his house. While sitting on the terrace, we talked about Indian music and classical singers. When the mention of Lata Mangeshkar came, he told me how he had seen Lata ji closely at a cultural program held in Allahabad a long time ago. He said that Lata ji was singing sitting in front of us, but her lips did not move. It was amazing to see how effortlessly she was singing so beautifully. The AIR staff was mesmerized and listened to the legendary singer who was titled the ‘Nightingale of India’. Then, looking at the sky, he said, “Lata Mangeshkar is a goddess, a real goddess. Such goddesses do not take birth again and again.”

Bharat Ratna and Swar Kokila Lata Mangeshkar has left a huge treasure of happiness for the music lovers in the form of her evergreen songs. Her songs will be listened to and sung for centuries. It is said that if one listens to a new song of Lata ji every day, which is not repeated, it will take 68 years to listen to all her songs. Lata Mangeshkar sang this many songs for over 1000 movies. For ages, her songs will be enjoyed in every home on radio, TV, mobile, websites and YouTube.

Amitabh Bachchan, the megastar of the century, said on the demise of Lata ji that ‘the sweetest voice of millions of centuries’ has left us.

Music not only entertains us, but it is also very important for good mental health. Due to the lockdown and social distancing during the Covid period, people all over the world were forced to stay indoors. Because of this people had to stay away from their friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances. This problem still continues. There was a fear of Covid and the compulsion to live alone. This caused a sudden rise in the cases of mental problems all over the world. Thankfully, there were smartphones and the Internet to keep people connected to music. A study by an Australian University found that when international students were left alone during the pandemic, they listened to the music of their choice to avoid stress. This gave them almost the same benefits as exercising, getting good sleep or travelling to some interesting place. The stress caused by online education was also reduced when the students listened to their favourite music. Music is what keeps the mind happy. My humble tributes to the goddess of music, Lata Didi.