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Beloved Ghazal Singer Pankaj Udhas Remembered for His Timeless Music

Pankaj Udhas, the legendary singer known for revitalizing ghazals and enchanting audiences with his unique style, has passed away at the age of 72. The Udhas family confirmed his demise, attributing it to a prolonged illness.

In a statement shared on Instagram by Pankaj Udhas’ daughter Nayaab on Monday, the family expressed their sorrow, announcing, “With a heavy heart, we are saddened to inform you of the sad demise of Padmashri Pankaj Udhas on 26th February 2024 due to a prolonged illness.”

Following Nayaab’s announcement, fans flooded the comment section with messages of condolences. Expressions like “May his soul rest in peace” and “Deepest Condolences and Prayers” poured in from grieving admirers, offering support to the Udhas family during this difficult time.

Pankaj Udhas passed away around 11 am at the Breach Candy hospital, according to a family source. His last rites are scheduled to take place on Tuesday. He is survived by his wife Farida Udhas, daughters Nayaab and Reva Udhas, and brothers Nirmal and Manhar Udhas, both of whom are also accomplished singers.

Pankaj Udhas carved an indelible mark in the music industry, best known for his soulful renditions in iconic tracks like “Chitthi Aayi Hai” from Mahesh Bhatt’s 1986 crime thriller “Naam,” “Chandi Jaisa Rang Hai” from Pravin Bhatt’s 1998 film “Ek Hi Maqsad,” “Aaj Phir Tumpe” from Feroz Khan’s 1988 action thriller “Dayavan,” “Jeeye To Jeeye Kaise” from Lawrence D’Souza’s 1991 romantic film “Saajan,” and “Chhupana Bhi Nahi Aata” from Abbas-Mustan’s 1993 revenge thriller “Baazigar,” among numerous others.

His illustrious ghazal career includes acclaimed albums like “Aahat” (1980) and timeless tracks such as “Na Kajre Ki Dhaar,” “Aur Ahista Kijiye Baatein,” “Ek Taraf Uska Ghar,” and “Thodi Thodi Piya Karo.”

In an interview with Hindustan Times, Pankaj Udhas candidly reflected on his return to the stage after a hiatus prompted by the pandemic. He shared, “Before the pandemic, there used to be a lot of confidence in me before any concert. But the pandemic phase was tough, even psychologically. Though I did my riyaaz regularly and tried to keep up and not get rusted, there was a lack of exposure to the stage and audience. So, when I got back on stage after two years with a concert in Rampur (Uttar Pradesh), I was really nervous. But when I went up on stage and saw 6,000 people cheering for me, I had tears in my eyes. It was a very emotional moment, as I was deprived of the stage for so long.” This insight showcases Udhas’s deep connection with his craft and the profound impact of his music on audiences throughout his illustrious career.

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