'Our cultural world a lot poorer': Modi on SP Balasubrahmanyam's demise

Updated: 25 September, 2020 15:26 IST | mid-day online correspondent | New Delhi

SP Balasubrahmanyam, popular as SPB or Balu in the movie world, who recorded over 40,000 songs in 16 languages over a period of five decades, died on Friday afternoon

Famed playback singer and Padma awardee SP Balasubrahmanyam
Famed playback singer and Padma awardee SP Balasubrahmanyam

Famed playback singer and Padma awardee SP Balasubrahmanyam, popular as SPB or Balu in the movie world, who recorded over 40,000 songs in 16 languages over a period of five decades, died on Friday afternoon.

Speaking briefly to the media outside the MGM Healthcare Hospital, his son S.P.Charan said Balasubrahmanyam passed away at 1.04 pm and thanked the hospital officials for the treatment and service. He said further details will be shared later.

Paying tributes to the legendary singer, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “With the unfortunate demise of Shri SP Balasubrahmanyam, our cultural world is a lot poorer.”

President Ram Nath Kovind in a tweet said: "In the passing of music legend SP Balasubrahmanyam Indian music has lost one of its most melodious voices. Called 'Paadum Nila' or 'Singing Moon' by his countless fans, he was honoured with Padma Bhushan and many National Awards. Condolences to his family, friends and admirers."

Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted, "Deeply saddened by the passing away of legendary musician and playback singer Padma Bhushan, S. P. Balasubrahmanyam ji. He will forever remain in our memories through his melodious voice & unparalleled music compositions. My condolences are with his family & followers. Om Shanti (sic)."

"My heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family and friends of Mr S. P. Balasubrahmanyam. His songs touched millions of hearts in many languages. His voice will live on," Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said.

In a statement issued on Friday, the hospital said: "In a further setback this morning, despite maximal life support measures and the best efforts of the clinical team, his condition deteriorated further and he suffered a cardio-respiratory arrest. With profound grief, we regret to inform that he has passed away on September 25 at 13.04 hours."

The hospital said Balasubrahmanyam was on life support measures since August 14 for severe COVID-19 pneumonia.

On August 5, in a Facebook post, the 74-year old SPB said that he was suffering from a very mild attack of coronavirus and had got himself hospitalised to take rest.

He had said that though the doctors had advised him to stay at home and take rest, he decided to be in a hospital, as at home his family members would get concerned. He hoped to get discharged from the hospital in two days. But it was not to be.

For a brief period he showed some improvement in his health condition and he had tested negative for coronavirus on September 4.

But on Thursday the hospital said his condition was extremely critical. Since Thursday the indications about Balasubrahmanyam were not good.

Since Friday morning a large number of police personnel were deployed outside the hospital. The singer's family members were all present at the hospital.

(With inputs from agency)

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First Published: 25 September, 2020 15:15 IST

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