Sundeep Bhutoria

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ess bee

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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Lata ji's unpublished interview

The Melody Queen of India, Lata Mangeshkar, was in Kolkata after almost nine years. She attended few events in the city and left yesterday.
The last time she left the city was on November 29, 2002. I remember the date exactly as I was on the same Sahara Airlines flight that night. That time, she had come to Kolkata was on Dona Ganguly's invitation. I came to know Dona through Lata ji only.
I remember seeing Lata ji enter the first floor Sahara lounge with her niece and then boarded the same flight to Mumbai. At that time, I used to write articles for a Hindi magazine called Sabrang and had done quite a few interviews of prominent personalities as a hobby. After the flight took off, I requested the air hostess for a pad and sent across a note to Lata ji seeking permission to ask her a few questions if it was fine with her.
Lata ji, as then and even now, in general, kept away from the media glare and the crowds. But luck was on my side and my excitement knew no bounds when she asked me to swap seats with her niece seated next to her so that we could chat during the flight.
Somehow, and for whatever reasons, the interview that I got from Lata ji, has not been printed till date. First it got delayed because Lata ji wanted me to collect a photo which I could use for this interview from Dona who had apparently given it to The Statesman, if I remember correctly.
I never got the photos till date and I too did not pen the interview and it never saw the light of the day. I have even today retained all the notes of that interview that I had scribbled down.
I am in two minds, should I leave it at that or go ahead and write it and even try to get it published. For me, the moments I shared learning about one of India's greatest legend from the legend herself would remain etched in my memory forever.
ess bee

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