Lata Mangeshkar: “Our Soldiers Deserve A Lot More Respect”

Asia’s  most precious talent the supreme  songstress Lata Mangeshkar has  donated  Re.1.crore  to the soldier’s welfare  fund.

She  is loath  to talk about her  gesture. “Iss mein kaun si badi baat hai? Badi baat toh hamare jawaan kar  rahen hain,jaan gawa rahen hain hamari khatir, hamare desh ki khatir.Unhe mera laakhon pranaam.”

About the  donation Lataji says,  “It’s the  least I could do. We should be  doing a  lot  more for the army  .Considering what  they  do for us we can never  repay their debt to us. However  this doesn’t  mean we  should lie back and do nothing. Not  only I , everyone  from my family my brother and  my sisters have  donated  whatever  they could  for the soldiers. Even  my driver Mahesh has donated  5,000 rupees.”

Lataji  says the  Mangeshkars  would donate  to the Army Welfare fund on the occasion  of  her father  Pandit Dinananth  Mangeshkar’s  death  anniversary  on April 24.

However  the  donation can’t wait.

 Says  Lataji, “Whatever  the amount, the time to  come forward  with the donations is now  when there is a crisis  looming over  the border. Our soldiers  need  to  know we are  with them in their hour  of  need. Why are  giving  up their lives  to protect us? Because  they  love their country.Makes no sense  to wait till my father’s death anniversary. Everyone  should give what they can.”

Lataji is  happy to see the entertainment industry  coming forward  with its support for  armyjawaan. “We in this industry have always done our bit. Way  back in  the  1960s Sunil DuttSaab used to take  his troupe(Ajanta Arts) to  the border to  entertain the soldiers. I’ve also been with Dutt Saab and his wife Nargisji on these tours  .Whenever we can we’ve come pitched in to  show our solidarity with the soldiers.”

Lataji is  in favour  of banning Pakistani  artistes, “Until the differences on the political  level are  sorted  out there’s  no point  in these  cultural exchanges.I am sure Pakistan has  good talent. But we are not short of talent.We can manage without them.”

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