Prime Minister Narendra's Modi website on Sunday highlighted the special bond shared between him and late singing icon Lata Mangeshkar and stated that the veteran singer in 2013 had said that she prayed to see him as India's Prime Minister.
Sharing a video clip of the incident, the website stated that in 2013, when Prime Minister Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he was invited by Lata Didi and her family to inaugurate a super-speciality hospital in Pune, which was built in memory of her late father, Deenanath Mangeshkar. The hospital was very close to Lata Didi as it was built in the memory of her late father. During the event, Lata Didi had said, "I pray to God that we see Narendra Bhai as PM." Lata Didi had said this much before 2014 elections.
Lata Didi had immense affection for PM Modi, the website stated adding that she affectionately called PM Modi as 'Narendra Bhai'. It further noted that both shared the same birth month.
The veteran singer, who passed away due to multiple organ failure at the age of 92, used to wish PM Modi on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan every year and had expressed anguish when she couldn't send Rakhi to him because of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
In one of her video messages, the veteran singer had said, "Narendra Bhai, I would like to wish you on the occasion of Rakhi and say pranam. I couldn't send a Rakhi and everybody knows the reason why." To which PM Modi had replied that "her heartfelt message gives infinite inspiration and energy. May you be healthy and live long. This is my prayer to God".
In an episode of 'Mann Ki Baat' in 2019, PM Modi had shared with the nation, a telephonic conversation he had with Lata Didi before leaving for his US trip. He referred to this cheerful conversation as "It was like a younger brother talking lovingly to his elder sister," the website stated.
Recounting his personal relationship with Lata Mangeshkar, bestowed with Bharat Ratna, PM Modi had recalled how she always treated him to Gujarati delicacies whenever he had the opportunity to meet her in the same episode of 'Mann ki Baat'.
In the same conversation he had said, "There would hardly be anyone who does not show utmost regard for Lata Mangeshkar ji. She is elder to most of us and has been witness to different eras in the country. We address her as 'didi.' To this Lata Didi had said, "Even you (PM Modi) don't know what you really are. I know that the picture of India is changing with your arrival and that makes me very happy. It makes me feel very good."
Lata Didi had also said that she took PM Modi's mother's blessings on her birthday.
Lata Didi and PM Modi used to wish each other on their birthdays. In one of the birthday-messages she had said that "Namaskar Narendra bhai. Aap ko janamdin ki bahut badhaai. Ishwar aap ko har kaam mein yash de yehi mangal kaamana. Tathastu." To this PM Modi had replied "Thank you Lata Didi. I have been fortunate to receive your blessings for many years. They give me immense strength." If one looks at this greetings exchange, one can see the mutual affection and warmth between Lata Didi and her 'Narendra Bhai'.
PM Modi had also wished her on her 92nd birthday in 2021. He said: "Birthday greetings to respected Lata Didi. Her melodious voice reverberates across the world. She is respected for her humility and passion towards Indian culture. Personally, her blessings are a source of great strength. I pray for Lata Didi's long and healthy life."
The website stated: "It is indeed a sad day for the nation that Lata Didi has passed away. But her voice will still reverberate across the country. This year at The Beating Retreat Ceremony, at the behest of PM Modi, the tune of 'Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon' was played. This song which was sung by Lata Didi instils the spirit of patriotism in the heart of every Indian."
Legendary singer and Bharat Ratna Lata Mangeshkar passed away at the age of 92 on Sunday at Mumbai's Breach Candy Hospital after battling with COVID-19 and pneumonia for several weeks.
The Central government announced two days of state mourning today and tomorrow during which the National Flag will be flown at half-mast throughout India.