Lata Mangeshkar : “The So-Called News About My Retirement Is Fake”

On Monday Asia’s Nightingale woke up to a barrage  of  messages and calls  expressing grief  over her decision  to retire from active singing.

A  Marathi song entitled  Ata visavyacha kshan (it is time to rest now) sung by  Lataji which was sent  on the  social media, triggered  off a  wave of raging grief among her fans.

 But rest assured , all you Lata bhakts. She isn’t hanging her  boots yet.

 In an  exclusive conversation with this  writer Lataji says, “I don’t know who started this rumour,  or why. It seems  like the work of an idle mind. Two days  ago I suddenly started getting  all these  messages and  calls anxiously inquiring  about my retirement.”

Lataji wondered where that came from. “I  got to know that one  of my Marathi songs Ata visavyachi  kshan was being seen as  my swan song.  But I sang that song five years ago! In 2013 the  music director  Salil Kulkarni came to me with the  song. I agreed to sing  it mainly because  it was written  by the well-known  poet Balakrishna Bhagwant Borkar. I had never sung any of his  poetry. How was I to know that five years later it would be  used by mischievous minds as  my retirement song?”

Lataji assures her fans she has no plans  to retire.  “I will continue to sing  till my last breath. Music is  the  essence of my existence. We Mangeshkars are  a family devoted to music. Take music away from  our lives and we are nothing.”

I remind her  that jealous elements could be responsible for spreading retirement rumours, that in fact way back in the early 1960s  an effort was made to poison her .

Lataji replies softly, “I know. It is true that I was poisoned. But I don’t want to blame anyone for  any of the  setback of my life. Why should anyone be jealous  of me now? I  have stopped singing film songs for some  years now. No,  I  won’t say , as you put it, they aren’t worthy  of me anymore.I just can’t connect with today’s film songs. So  I have bowed out. As far as non-film songs are concerned I  will continue to sing them no matter what.”

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