Remembering ghazal giant Mehnaz Begum

Published: January 19, 2019
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PHOTO: FILE

PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: Today marks the 6th death anniversary of renowned ghazal singer Mehnaz Begum. Fellow singers believe that after “Malika-e-Tarannum’ Noor Jehan, it was Mehnaz Begum who was loved the most amongst the artist community.

Local artists will be observing the anniversary today at Bahrain Airport where she had collapsed before passing away the same day. The 55-year-old was stopping over before heading out to the US for her treatment.

“Mehnaz Begum was a phenomenal singer and Pakistan’s pride,” senior folk singer Shoukat Ali shared with The Express Tribune. “Most of her work was with Mehdi Hasan during her time in the film industry. He was the king of classical singing and only Mehnaz proved to be a suitable pair for him.”

Mehnaz Begum was born in Karachi back in 1950 to a family of artists. Her mother Kajjan Begum, was among some of the most famous singers within the subcontinent during her era. The family earned much fame due to her mother’s singing prowess.

Kajjan personally supervised Mehnaz’s training as a singer and that played a pivotal role in honing her skills and timeless fame. Her career kicked off with  Radio Pakistan and later she went onto to work for PTV.  In the 70s she ventured into acting for Lollywood as well.

“Mehnaz Begum was my idol,” began singer Humaira Arshad. “She was also a great ustad. There are many things that today’s singers can learn from her work. She was a beautiful personality and sung with such grace – straigh from heart.”

Mehnaz Begum sung around 2600 songs during her career. Some of these songs even brought a lot of success to many films within Lollywood.

The Mera Pyar Tere Jeevan Ka singer dominated the Pakistani film industry for two long decades. She was the recipient of the Nigar Award numerous times, 13 to be precise and performed all around the globe during her time.

Her super hit songs include Mujhe Dil Se Na Bhulana, Main Jis Din Bhula Dun Tera Pyar, Pyar Ka Wada, Ankhon Ke Ratjago, Ho Mujhe Le Chal and many more. She sang for numerous  super hit films including Qurbani, Pehchaan, Aaina, Biwi Ho To Aisi, Amber, Anmol Mohabbat among others.

“Although Mehnaz Begum sang for films, her main contribution was to classical music,” stated classical singer Hussain Buksh Gullo. “Her ghazal singing was the best. She had a great run, espeically in the field of classical singing.” He added, “Mehnaz Begum was an expert at what she did and provided us with amazing songs… she was a natural.”

Edited by Ramsha Vistro

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