RIP Pankaj Udhas

Veteran Ghazal singer & playback singer Pankaj Udhas has passed away at 72 after a prolonged illness on February 26. The singer’s family released a statement confirming the death of the ghazal maestro. “With a very heavy heart,¬†we¬†are¬†saddened to inform you of the sad demise of Padmashri Pankaj¬†Udhas¬†on 26th February due to a prolonged illness. Udhas family.” The singer passed away at 11 AM today at Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai. According to reports, he was diagnosed with cancer a few months back and was not meeting anyone. The singer’s last rites will be performed on Tuesday (February 27). Pankaj Udhas’ daughter Nayaab also shared the news of his father’s demise on social media.

Pankaj Udhas, a name synonymous with soulful ghazals, has captivated audiences for over four decades. Born on May 17, 1951, in Jetpur, Gujarat, India, Udhas’ musical journey began at a young age, nurtured by a family steeped in music. Udhas’ early career saw him singing for Hindi films and even dabbling in Indian pop. However, his true calling lay in the realm of ghazals, a form of Urdu poetry set to music. In 1980, he released his first ghazal album, “Aahat,” marking the beginning of a prolific career that would see him release over 60 solo albums and numerous collaborative projects. Udhas’ melodious voice, coupled with his nuanced understanding of ghazal poetry, resonated deeply with listeners. He became a pioneer in bringing ghazals to the mainstream, making them accessible to a wider audience beyond connoisseurs of the genre.

Udhas’ dedication to his craft has been recognised with numerous prestigious awards, including the Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer, the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for Ghazal Singing, and the Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian honour. Beyond his musical prowess, Udhas was known for his humble and down-to-earth personality. Pankaj Udhas‚Äô voice is forever etched in the hearts of ghazal lovers everywhere.¬†

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