S.P Balasubrahmanyam dies at a Chennai hospital
Celebrated playback singer S P Balasubrahmanyam, who held sway over millions of fans with his golden voice for over five decades, died on Friday at a hospital in Chennai where he was being treated for Covid-19 since last month.
The 74-year old singer, whose condition became extremely critical on Thursday, breathed his last at 1.04 pm, a statement from MGM Healthcare, where he was admitted on August 5 after testing positive for Covid-19, said.
However, the hospital said he had tested negative for Covid-19 on September 4.
A six-time national award winner, Balasubrahmanyam, who had sung over 40,000 songs, was also honoured with Padma Shri in 2001 and Padma Bhushan in 2011.
He is survived by wife, a son and a daughter.
Announcing the death of SPB, as he was popularly known, his son and filmmaker S P Charan told reporters that his father's songs would live forever in the hears of his fans.
Charan thanked all those who had prayed for the recovery of his father and the doctors, nurses and the administrative staff of the hospital for their attempts to save him.
A statement from MGM Healthcare said: "In a further setback this morning, despite maximal life support measures and the best efforts of the clinical team, his (Balasubrahmanyam's) condition deteriorated further and he suffered a cardio-respiratory arrest.
"With profound grief, we regret to inform that he passed away at 13.04 hours," it said.
The hospital extended its condolences to his family, friends and well wishers.
The hospital noted that from August 14 the singer was put on life support measures -ventilator and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support- in view of severe Covid-19 pneumonia.' "He continued to be closely monitored by our multi-disciplinary team in the critical care unit. He tested negative for Covid-19 on September 4," it added.
Tributes poured in from all parts of India as the news of the demise was mourned by celebrities and common man alike.
President Ram Nath Kovind condoled death of the celebrated playback singer and said Indian music has lost one of its melodious voices.
"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," the president tweeted.
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.— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) September 25, 2020
Paying rich tributes to legendary singer S P Balasubrahmanyam, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that he was a household name across the country and that his melodious voice and music enthralled audience for decades.
In his condolence message, Modi tweeted, "With the unfortunate demise of Shri SP Balasubrahmanyam, our cultural world is a lot poorer. A household name across India, his melodious voice and music enthralled audiences for decades. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with his family and admirers. Om Shanti."
With the unfortunate demise of Shri SP Balasubrahmanyam, our cultural world is a lot poorer. A household name across India, his melodious voice and music enthralled audiences for decades. In this hour of grief, my thoughts are with his family and admirers. Om Shanti.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 25, 2020
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Friday expressed grief over the demise of playback singer S P Balasubrahmanyam and said he would forever remain in people's memories through his melodious voice and unparalleled music compositions.
"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," 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— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) September 25, 2020
Prominent names from Indian film industry such as veteran singer Lata Mangeshkar, music composer AR Rahman, actors Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar paid tributes to legendary singer SP Balasubrahmanyam and remembered his contribution in the field of music.
"I'm very disturbed by the demise of SP Balasubrahmanyam. We have recorded many song together and did a lot shows. My condolences to his family," the veteran singer wrote on Twitter.
Pratibhashaali gayak,madhurbhashi ,bahut nek insan SP Balasubrahmanyam ji ke swargwas ki khabar sunke main bahut vyathit hun.Humne kai gaane saath gaaye,kai shows kiye.Sab baatein yaad aarahi hain.Ishwar unki aatma ko shanti de.Meri samvedanaayein unke pariwar ke saath hain.— Lata Mangeshkar (@mangeshkarlata) September 25, 2020
Anil Kapoor remembered the musician as "great human being" and "an incredible singer" and said that he will be "missed truly".
"Lucky to have had him dub for me... Give his voice to my performances in my first Telugu and Kannada film... SP Balasubrahmanyam will be missed truly...my heartfelt condolences & prayers to the family..." he added.
A.R Rahman shared his photo with Balasubrahmanyam and posted, "#ripspb ...Devastated".
Akshay Kumar expressed his condolences and said he was 'deeply saddened' to hear the news.
"Just a few months back I'd interacted with him during a virtual concert in this lockdown..he seemed hale, hearty & his usual legendary self...life is truly unpredictable. My thoughts & prayers with his family," he wrote.
Balasubrahmanyam's voice played a huge role in establishing Salman Khan as a romantic hero in the 1990s with songs "Mere rang main", "Pehla pehla pyaar hai", "Mausam ka jaddu", and "Hum aapke hain koun" among others.
Khan, who on Thursday wished the legendary singer a speedy recovery, said he was heartbroken by the news of his demise.
"Heartbroken to hear about #SPBalasubrahmanyam sir... you will forever live on in your undisputed legacy of music! condolence to the family #RIP," he tweeted.