Pandit Jasraj: India has lost its invaluable gem


I have not achieved so much in life to be in a position to say anything for a legend who was known as the “Maartand” of the Indian classical music. I still can’t believe the news of the passing away of Pandit Jasraj in New Jersey, the United States, at the age of 90. Ever since I have heard about his demise, I am in a state of complete shock and sadness. He was 90-year-old and still followed his passion for music with the same enthusiasm. A child, no matter how older he gets, always remains a kid for his mother. This is absolutely true for Pandit Jasraj as well who always remained a child and kept learning and growing in front of his mother—music.

 Pandit ji belonged to JaipurMewati gharana and was also a recipient of prestigious awards including Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan for his 80 years of service to music.

A month ago, I performed at a programme which was organised by Pandit ji’s daughter Durga Jasraj in America. Sometimes later, she called me and said, “Baba hamesha sunte hai aapko (my father always listens to you).” I cannot explain in words what it meant for me.

 I am someone who has had the opportunity to perform in front of Pandit Jasraj many times. He listened to me in many events like IDEA Jalsa and also in an event in Bhopal. Not only he listened to my songs but he was also very fond of my father Ustad Rana Khan ji due to which he later invited me to his home where I performed for him.

Passing away of Pandit Jasraj is an irreparable loss. India has lost an invaluable musical gem. His death has left a great void in the Indian classical music which we won’t be able to fill in the coming centuries.

My heartfelt tributes to Pandit ji. May his soul rest in peace!

 Mame Khan is one of the most renowned folk and Sufi singers from Rajasthan.