Termites nibbling away at Bismillah Khan’s citations | Varanasi … – Times of India

Posted: August 29, 2017 at 7:50 pm


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VARANASI: Seven months after his shehnais were stolen, several other belongings of the legendary Ustad Bismillah Khan, including his Padma Vibhushan citation, are being destroyed by termites at his Hadahasarai residence due to negligence and lack of proper maintenance. The fact came to light when people gathered at his residence to pay tributes to the maestro on his 11th death anniversary. When questions were raised, the maestro’s grandson Nasir Abbas said: “We don’t have the wherewithal to maintain Khan Saheb’s mementos. Shockingly, termites have almost eaten away his Padma Vibhushan citation.This honour was conferred upon him by the then President late Neelam Sanjiva Reddy on March 22, 1980.” When this reporter reached the maestro’s ancestral house in a dingy by-lane of Hadha Sarai locality in the city on Tuesday, a day after the anniversary, dampness was evident on the walls as well as on several other framed citations. Among his five sons, Ustad’s fourth son Kazim Hussain, who now lives in Dalmandi area, is the main custodian of his citations and other belongings. Despite repeated efforts, Kazim could not be contacted. Abbas said, “Initially, all the citations were hanged on walls of the drawing room on the ground floor.When we saw that termite and dampness were def stroying the citations a few months back, we shifted them to the third-floor room where our grandfather lived.” Abbas and his cousin Aziz Fatima raised the issue of monetary constraint in maintaining the citations and other items. “After the demise of the Ustad, his sons and grandchildren who are also in the field of music, barely get to perform at two-three programmes a year. The payments we get for the performance is insufficient even to feed our families,” Abbas said.

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Termites nibbling away at Bismillah Khan’s citations | Varanasi … – Times of India

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