A RTI application to the Home Ministry that was made public has got Bollywood’s legendary singer in a tight spot
Lata Mangeshkar is stuck in the eye of a controversy. The veteran singer apparently recommended names of singer Suresh Wadkar, social worker Rajmal Parakh and her own sibling Usha Mangeshkar for the Padma awards.
According to the singer she wasn’t wrong in recommending these names; she also confirmed that every year the award committee sends her a letter asking for recommendations. She also confirmed having suggested several people for this award earlier. Clarifying her stand on her sister, Mangeshkar feels that her younger sister has been in the industry for over five decades and sung several melodic songs in various languages that have become popular. As for Suresh Wadkar Lata feels that he has been around for almost 40 years and has dedicated his life for music by starting music academies in India as well as abroad. The singer was obviously miffed with being dragged into this controversy and has vowed to never ever to suggest any names for the awards.
The singer took to Twitter immediately after this episode to clear her stand, “Namaskar. Kal newspapers aur tv pe maine news dekhi jisme padma puraskaar ke liye maine meri behen usha aur suresh wadkar ji ke naam ki sifaarish ki. Lekin har saal mujhe ye puraskaar ki jo samitee hai unka letter aata hai aur usme likha hota hai ki aap jo naam uchit samajhti hai’n unke naam aur bio data wo mujhse mangwaate hain. Maine aaj tak kai logo’n ke naam bheje hain. Aur mujhe lagta hai ki usha jaisi kalakar jo film industry me 50 se bhi adhik varsho’n se gaa rahi hai aur assamese gujraathi ,hindi, marathi rajasthani in sab bhashao’n me uske gaane bohot popular hai. Isi tarha suresh wadkar ji jinhone kai bhashao’n me gaaya hai, pichle 40 saalon se wo gaa rahe hai. Sangeet vidyalaya bhi wo chalate hai jinki shaakhaayein na sirf mumbai balki america u,a.e me bhi hai. To aise sarwagun sampanna kalakaro’n ke naamo’n ka sujhao agar maine diya to isme kya galat hai. Mujhe padma-puraskaar samiti ka letter aata hai isliye main sujhao deti hu. Par aainda se main unhe koi sujhao nahi dungi.”
Interestingly, Mangeshkar isn’t the only one to have recommended, there are politicians and other musicians who have submitted names of family and friends for the awards. Classical singer Pandit Jasraj, Sarod player Ustad Amjad Ali Khan a recipient of Padma Vibhushan made submitted six names that include his sons Amaan and Ayaan and also Jaya Prada’s name was suggested by Samajvadi Party leader Amar Singh.
And even if Usha Mangeshkar’s name hasn’t made it to the nominations list, one cannot help but wonder the lobbying that takes place for an honour like the Padma awards that also has monetary benefits for its winners. Not fair na BollywoodLifers?