Mumbai, Jan.27: Legendary singer Lata Mangeshkar was felicitated by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi at the golden jubilee of her song ‘Ae mere watan ke logon’ in the ‘Shreshta Bharat Divas’ event at Mumbai’s Mahalaxmi Racecourse on Monday.
Modi said that it is India’s misfortune that the nation has lost more soldiers to terrorism than in war.
“The words and melody of ‘Mere watan ke logo’ has a place in the hearts and minds of millions of Indians. Post-independence, ‘Mere Watan Ke Logon’ has come to symbolise what war is, how soldiers laid down their lives in the battlefield,” he said.
“But it is India’s misfortune that we have lost more soldiers to terrorism than in war. If India decides, and has the right leadership, within 10 years we will be in a position to export arms. Should our engineering colleges not have courses to manufacture defence equipment?” he questioned.
He also recalled former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s rule, and said that new initiatives were taken up for soldiers during his time.
When Atal ji was in power, nuclear tests were done, new initiatives for soldiers were undertaken,” he said.
On the occasion of the golden jubilee celebration of her famous song, Mangeshkar sang few lines of the song in front of a huge mesmerized audience who sang the patriotic song with her.
This song was first sung by Lata Mangeshkar on January 27, 1963, in the presence of India’s first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in Delhi. Written by Kavi ‘Pradeep’ and composed by C Ramachandra, this immortal song pays tribute to all the martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the country in the war between India and China. (ANI)