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Bismillah's sons give grand start to Ganga Mahotsava

Written by: Staff

Varanasi, Nov 21 (UNI) The three sons of the late shehnai legend Bharat Ratna Ustad Bismillah Khan gave a grand beginning to the three-day Ganga Mahotsava on the banks of Ganga river here this evening.

The trinity comprising Khan Sahib's musical heir and second son Ustad Naiyyar Hussain 'Bismillah', third son Zamin Hussain -- both on shehnai -- and their youngest sibling Nazim Hussain playing the tabla gave a glimpse of the rich musical legacy inherited from the illustrious father.

The musical threesome won seamless plaudits for the two pieces soaked in Raag Hansdhwani and Raag Yaman.

The stage was then set for the Kathak performance of Shweta Mishra from Lucknow, who in the past had performed in a song sequence in Bollywood blockbuster 'Gadar'. The young dancer presented an amalgam of 'Bhav' and 'Mudra' to narrate the tale of 'Ganga Avtaran' on the Rajendra Prasad Ghat.

A jam-packed audience comprising foreign tourists in large numbers, however, were eager to see the signature 'jugalbandi' between Santoor maestro Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma and tabla virtuoso Pandit Kishan Maharaj, who were slated to cap the first of the three evenings of the Mahotsava.

Earlier, Uttar Pradesh Tourism Minister Kaukab Hamid inaugurated the cultural festival. Addressing the gathering, Mr Hamid described Varanasi as the cultural capital of the world and said three international chain of hotels will soon become a part of the ancient city.

He also admitted that the ancient city had outplaced Agra and the Buddhist tourist circuit in terms of tourist inflow.

Later, interacting with newspersons, the minister informed that a sum of Rs 35 crore has been sanctioned by the centre towards the wholesome tourism development of the city. The first instalment of Rs 7.9 crore will soon be released to the state government.


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