Amjad Ali Khan's sarod goes missing on British Airways flight

Jun 30, 2014, 15:25 IST | PTI

New Delhi: Indian classical musician Ustad Amjad Ali Khan's sarod, which he has been playing for the last 45 years, has gone missing while he was returning to Delhi from London by a British Airways flight.

Amjad Ali Khan
Sarod Maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan. File pic

The Padma Vibhushan sarod maestro had gone to London along with his wife Subhalaxmi for a performance at Dartington College to celebrate the life of Rabindranth Tagore on June 21 and returned on the night of June 28.

A visibly disheartned Amjad Ali Khan told mid-day, "My sarod was my companion for 45 years its been 48 hours and British Airways has not been able to trace it . I am hoping that miracle to happen and to see someone come and return it to me."

"Sarod meri dil ki dhadkon ko logo tak pahunchta tha" (With the Sarod, I communicated my heartbeat to my audiences) he added. 

"We were travellliing back from London after a concert. And at international airports there always a counter for oversize baggage where I handed over my sarod to the officials. The counter looked packed with instruments probably an orchestra party also was travelling with us. My wife got worried but I said god will take care not knowing what will happen .”

Khan has not really had good experience with British Airways in the past. He said“ I have lost suitcases which have never been recovered by them. So in this case I am only hopiing for a miracle to happen.”

Khan does not want any compensation for his sarod. He said,“ it is priceless and will be insulting to put a price to an instrument which has been my companion for 45 years.

He and his wife were travelling first class on British Airways flight (BA-143) on their return journey from London to New Delhi on June 28, when the incident took place.

When contacted, British Airways said, "There have been intermittent problems with Heathrow Airport's baggage system in Terminal 5. We are working round-the-clock to make sure we reunite all of our customers with their baggage as quickly as possible". "This process has taken longer than anticipated and we apologise for the inconvenience caused," an airline spokesperson said.

(with inputs from Bharti Dubey)

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