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PM, Vice President condole passing away of Ravi Shankar

Posted on Dec 12, 06:02PM | IBNS

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Vice President Hamid Ansari on Wednesday condoled the passing away of Indian musician and sitar exponent Pandit Ravi Shankar.

In his condolence message to Ravi Shankar's wife his wife Sukanya, the Prime Minister described him as "one of its most effective cultural ambassadors across the world".

"I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing away of Bharat Ratna Pandit Ravi Shankar. India has lost an eminent son, the world of sitar has lost one of its ablest exponents ever and a shining light in the firmament of music has been extinguished," Singh said in his message.

"Like many others around the world, I join you in grieving this loss and in extending to you and your loved ones my heartfelt condolences."

"I consider it a personal privilege to have known Pandit Ravi Shankar and to have served together with him as a member of the Rajya Sabha. It was difficult, often, to judge what was more remarkable - the man or his music.

"The nation was fortunate not only to be able to enjoy his music, but also to have him as one of its most effective cultural ambassadors across the world. His humanism, combined with his musical genius, helped him in building cross-civilizational contacts that served the world of music and benefited humanity at large."

Singh said:"I am aware that it will be difficult to come to terms with this grievous loss and that words are scant consolation at such a time. I pray that Pandit Ravi Shankar`s soul find eternal peace and that you and your family members be granted the strength and fortitude to bear this loss. Once again, please accept my sincerest condolences."

In his message, Ansari said Ravi Shankar was an iconic figure who had become a legend of music during his lifetime.

"I am deeply saddened on the passing way of the Sitar maestro, Pandit Ravi Shankar. Pandit ji was an iconic figure who had become a legend of music during his lifetime,"
Ansari said.

"His greatness was universally acknowledged. His name had become synonymous with Indian music. His departure has created a void which may perhaps never ever be filled. However, his work is immortal and will continue to inspire and give pleasure to millions of his admirers throughout the world."

"I convey my heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family and all his fans. I pray to the Almighty to grant them strength and fortitude to bear this loss," said Ansari

In his condolence message to Ravi Shankar's family, Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said: "With the death of Panditji, an era in classical music has come to an end. He was truly a multi-faceted personality. Through his passion for music, he linked generations together and taught the world the role and relevance of music in our lives."

"Through the strings of his sitar he presented to the world, the richness of Indian classical tradition in music. His innovations gave us a perfect blend of jugalbandi of different musical traditions. We will all miss his presence as an inspiration in music."

"I pray to God that his family gathers the necessary strength to overcome this crisis," said the minister.

Ravi Shankar passed away at age 92 at a San Diego hospital in United States on Tuesday, leaving behind countless mourners from every walks of life and a musical legacy that he built over a lifetime of dedication to the plucked string instrument and international collaborations, including the Beatles.

The musical legend was ailing for quite some years and on Dec 6 he was admitted at the Scripps Memorial Hospital here.