PM Modi and Lata Mangeshkar | Photo: PTI|File
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi's website highlighted on Sunday the "special bond" between him and Lata Mangeshkar and noted that the legendary singer had in 2013 said she prays to God to see him as India's prime minister.
"Lata Didi had immense affection for Prime Minister Modi," the write up on the website stated.
Noting that both shared the same birthday month, it said she used to affectionately call him 'Narendra Bhai'.
In 2013, when Modi was chief minister of Gujarat, he was invited by her and her family to inaugurate a super-speciality hospital in Pune which was built in memory of her late father Deenanath Mangeshkar.
"During the event, Lata Didi had said, 'I pray to God that we see Narendra Bhai as PM'. Lata Didi had said this much before 2014 elections," it stated, sharing a video clip of the event.
Mangeshkar, who passed away earlier in the day at an age of 92 years, used to wish him on Raksha Bandhan every year and had expressed anguish when she couldn't send Rakhi to him because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the write up stated. The website noted that the prime minister in an episode of 'Mann Ki Baat' had shared a telephonic conversation he had with her before leaving for his US trip. It was like a younger brother talking lovingly to his elder sister, he had said.
Recounting his personal relationship with the iconic singer, bestowed with Bharat Ratna, Modi had recalled how she always treated him to Gujarati delicacies whenever he had the opportunity to meet her.
In the same conversation, after Modi had highlighted the high regard in which she is held, the prime minister said she had replied, "Even you (PM) don't know what you really are. I know that the picture of India is changing with your arrival and that makes me very happy. It makes me feel very good."
Mangeshkar had also said that she took Modi's mother's blessings on her birthdays.
If one looks at the greetings exchanged between them on their birthdays, one can see the mutual affection and warmth between them, the website said.
"It is indeed a sad day for the nation that Lata Didi has passed away. But her voice will still reverberate across the country. This year at the Beating Retreat Ceremony at the behest of PM Modi, the tune 'Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon' was played". This song which was sung by Lata Didi instils the spirit of patriotism in the heart of every Indian," it said.