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Vilakudy Days

Sunday, March 26, 2006

LATAJI, YOU CAN LEAVE BOMBAY


THE VOICE AND VOICELESS

Again, the Peddar Road flyover issue is on the boil. A day after the Maharashtra Government decided to go ahead with the project, residents are up in arms. And unlike many voiceless citizens, an illustrious daughter of the place has taken the protest-chorus into a new pitch. Furious, Lata Mangeshkar has threatened that if a flyover comes up, she will leave the city soon. This happens when personalities grow higher than the State. Sachin Tendulkar did it when he sought tax exemptions to import his Ferrari. My initial impression was that she might lose her flat once the flyover came up. I was wrong. The maximum damage, it does, will be that it affects her privacy. Imagine this happens in a country where millions had been thrown out - euphemistically called displaced – when dams and such ambitious projects are constructed. When the poor get ‘displaced’ without alternative measures, there are not many voices in support. They are poor and voiceless; Lata is the Voice and rich. Incidentally, it was the same day a feeble voice called Medha Patkar met the Prime Minister seeking his intervention in the resettlement and rehabilitation and of those displaced by the Sardar Sarovar dam across the Narmada in Gujarat. In a time where newspaper spaces are being sold, The Hindu front-paged the feeble voice.

Coming back to Peddar Road, it seems Lata had threatened to stop singing when the controversy happened last time. The project did not take off. And she kept singing. Now, she threatens to leave Bombay. But this time, the flyover is all set to take off. And Lataji, you can start packing the bags and cassettes. You may be a great singer and the Voice, but on a larger picture, you are another citizen of India. Just another citizen.

2 Comments:

Blogger Shobha said...

Yup, I agree with you. It belittles her persona, her talent and her age to issue threats like these. Sometimes I really think that one's rights are determined by how much you have in your pocket. Sad but true :(

11:04 AM  
Blogger Divya said...

I find it hilarious that Lata Mangeshkar should be pompous enuf to think that we, the citizens of Mumbai care so much if she stays or leaves! Regardless of whether I am in favour of the flyover or not, she can be rest assured that her choice of residence is not something that I am losing sleep over!

5:34 AM  

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