The legendary semi-classical singer Girija Devi died on Tuesday in Kolkata of a cardiac arrest. She was 88. The classical singer from the Seniya and Banaras gharanas was reportedly admitted at the BM Birla Hospital in Kolakata in the morning after she complained of chest pain.
Fondly called the “thumri queen”, Devi made her public debut on All India Radio Allahabad in 1949. Winner of all three Padma awards, Devi was honoured with the Padma Vibhushan in 2016. She had also won the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid his respects to the great singer. He tweeted about the great loss to Indian music. "Saddened by the demise of Girija Devi ji. Indian classical music has lost one of its most melodious voices. My thoughts are with her admirers," he said. "Girija Devi ji's music appealed across generations. Her pioneering efforts to popularise Indian classical music will always be remembered."
Girija Devi ji ek bahut acchi mahila thi. Main unko shraddhanjali arpan karti hun. ishwar unki aatma ko shanti pradan kare .
— Lata Mangeshkar (@mangeshkarlata) October 24, 2017
Girija Devi was not only a great classical singer but a national treasure too . We are poorer without her . Girija ji , AAP Ko mera salaam .
— Javed Akhtar (@Javedakhtarjadu) October 24, 2017
Passing away of legend Vidushi Girija Devi has left a void in the Indian classical music may her soul rest in eternal peace our Pranams 🙏🏻🙏🏻 pic.twitter.com/6EL3SmgMAh
— Pankaj Udhas (@Pankajkudhas) October 24, 2017
Deeply saddened at the demise of eminent classical singer Girija Devi.Thumri lovers like me shall mourn her forever. #RestInPeaceGirijaDevi
— Prosenjit Chatterjee (@prosenjitbumba) October 24, 2017
— Amjad Ali Khan (@AAKSarod) October 24, 2017
An era has come to an end .. our dearest Girija devi ji has moved on to the next dimension ... her voice will live on this planet forever ! pic.twitter.com/uaMLtRZaUa
— Shankar Mahadevan (@Shankar_Live) October 24, 2017