Legendary playback singer Manna Dey passed away at a private hospital in Bangalore following a prolonged illness. Doctors said, 94-year old singer breathed his last at 3.50 AM today. He was suffering from lung infection.
Manna Dey has sung more than 3,500 songs in a number languages including Hindi, Bengali, Gujarati, Marathi and Assamese. He made his debut as a playback singer in the film Tamanna in 1942.
Manna Dey was given Padma Shri in 1971, Padma Bhushan in 2005 and Dadasaheb Phalke award in 2007.
Manna Dey became famous after the release of “Do Bigha Zamin” in 1953 when two of his songs composed by Salil Choudhury became hits. Among other music directors, he worked with Anil Biswas, SD Burman, RD Burman, Shankar-Jaikishan and Laxmikant Pyarelal.
Family sources said, his mortal remains will be kept at Ravindra Kalakshetra in Bangalore till noon for paying homage and will be cremated in the evening.
‘This’ reminds me the day during my college days when I attended Manna Dey’s live event in Delhi University somewhere in 1983 organised by my friend ‘Surjit Singh Virdi’ now a ‘Chartered Accountant’. I remember Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad was also there as a Chief Guest. The picture of singing Manna Day with his harmonium is so fresh and alive in my memory that it seems as if it happened just a week ago not 30 years before.
Manna Dey’s legacy will live on through the songs he sang.