Moved readers add to musician's symphony

Jun 28, 2013, 08:38 IST | Mahalakshmi Subramanian

MiD DAY's report on the 69-year-old's travails to gather funds for his wife's cancer treatment by playing music and selling his art has inspired many to come forward with contributions, in cash and kind; restaurateurs are eager to offer their spaces as a platform for Sett's talents

For the past decade, musician Swapan Sett has been walking a lonely road, travelling from city to city to play his music and sell his CDs and sketches, in order to provide for his wife’s costly cancer treatment. Following MiD DAY’s report on the artist’s travails yesterday, the musician will never walk alone again. Moved by his story, readers have come forward with offers of help (‘This musician has been playing for love’ June 27).

Swapan Sett at a restaurant in Shivaji Park, Dadar. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

Restaurateurs were eager to offer their spaces as a platform for Sett and help ease his burden. Ronney D’souza, a restaurateur, said, “He is a source of inspiration for all, as he is doing so much for the well-being of his wife at this age. I own a restaurant called Uncle’s Kitchen in Malad and I would like to invite him to play here, so people can enjoy his music and also buy his CDs and paintings.”

MiD Day’s report yesterday, highlighting Swapan Sett’s plight

While the family is based in Kolkata, the Setts visit Tata Memorial Hospital in the city for wife Poornima’s checkups, the expenses for which amount to Rs 4,000 for every visit. Apart from playing violin in restaurants and temples, Sett also sells paintings. At 69, the man is busy trying to amass the funds for his wife’s healthcare and to provide for the household.

Komal Kumbhar, a freelance content writer, met Sett at Markiv’s Cafe in Churchgate on Wednesday. As she dug into breakfast, she wondered why the elderly man was playing the violin at an eatery at his age. “That’s when he told me about his wife’s illness. I was touched by his love for his wife, by the fact that he does not want to lose her, at any cost. I have decided that as a token of respect for what he is doing, I will bear the expense for one of the hospital check-ups,” she said.

MiD DAY reader Raman Iyer said, “Buying his CD and paintings is no doubt a significant contribution, but I believe this city is capable of much more. And since his art emerges from such a deep emotion, I am sure the people of Mumbai will pay for the experience. Being a musician myself, I am willing to contribute and design a better platform for him to package and market his art.”

Iyer plays the mandolin for the folk rock band Flameshot Fakirs. Harish Mehta, director of Technograph Engineering, said that the cause was worthy enough to merit contribution from different quarters. “We spend money everywhere, many a time not fruitfully. So I am willing to pay for his wife’s healthcare charges for a year. Since I am a Rotarian, I can also arrange for a violin show in the Rotary Club.”

Sett will be in Mumbai till Monday, and will be showcasing his art at Sukh Sagar restaurant in Girgaum Chowpatty, Jain Temple in Walkeshwar, Hotel Intercontinental in Churchgate and Aaswad restaurant in Shivaji Park, Dadar.

Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter were brimming with messages full of admiration for Sett’s work, and requests to buy his music CDs. Here are a few of the memorable ones:

I am sure we can do a lot more to help him than just buying his CD for Rs 150. But that’s a beginning a very significant one. - Raman Iyer

Amazing. May god bless him and cure his wife soon. - Ashish Bhardwaj

Can I have the CD person please? - Shairaz Rayees Boblai

Very inspiring!!! - Ayan Agrawal

Great bonding, God bless. - Mohd Jamil Nomani

Tweet talk
@PWNeha This is love. People, please buy Sett’s music and art. I’m going to, too. @MiD_DAY
@zenmotherhood Such beautiful music. RT @mid_day: 69-yr-old playing violin to fund his wife’s cancer treatment.
@Sammypedia More than DU and other random stuff, THIS man needs your attention. #Respect
@Jswaminatha @MiD_DAY Great. Love has no age. True husband & father will always strive his best to save his wife & children. That’s true Indian culture.

Want to help?
Reach out to Swapan Sett and make a difference to his life. Call him at 9331244895 

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