Reshma’s death anniversary to be observed today

'Laal meri' and 'Lambi Judai' singer witnessed a career full of milestones and unforgettable songs

Adnan Lodhi November 03, 2019

LAHORE: The sixth death anniversary of renowned folk singer Reshma, also known as Bulbule Sehra, will be observed today. Renowned showbiz personalities including some of those who have worked with the late icon will attend the ceremony being organised by her son Sawan Ali at her Ichhra residence in Lahore.

Reshma catapulted to fame for her soulful voice and effortless singing and her songs continue to be an inspiration for fans world over. Known as one of finest voices to have come out of the subcontinent, the Lambi Judai crooner’s service and body of work will be remembered by her loved ones on the occasion.


Following a successful run on Radio Pakistan, she took the plunge into the film industry and commenced work for both Pakistani and Indian films. Her songs Main Chori Chori Tere Naal, Akhiyon Ko Rehne and many others became fan favourites. However, her breakthrough performance was the 1968 hit Laal Meri Pat Rakhiyo. Reshma was also known for singing at various shrines in Sindh including that of Laal Shahbaz Qalandar where she embraced the dhamaal style of singing.

Born in Rajasthan, India, she migrated to Karachi post Partition and shifted to Lahore soon after. While she hailed from a family of nomads, Reshma always had a penchant for music.


While her family yearns to keep her memory alive, it is unfortunate that no organisation including the Pakistan Institute of Language Art and Culture (PILAC), Alhamra Arts Council and Punjab Arts Council have not planned anything in her honour. “It is extremely sad that PILAC which was set up to promote Punjabi singers has not held any event in memory of Reshma.

We have organised functions for great folk singers in the past but this year it was completely overlooked by the administration,” a PILAC official told The Express Tribune, requesting anonymity. Speaking on the same issue, her son, Sawan added, “It’s only the friends and family members that have been organising events to commemorate my mother and her legacy. She served a lot to this country and I think it is the duty of the government to celebrate her life.”

Reshma holds several accolades to her credit, including an official state visit to India, which was extended by former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. The late premier also named a road after the legendary artist. “Reshma’s death was a huge loss for the folk singing industry. She had a beautiful voice and every song she touched turned to gold and crossed generations,” said folk singer Shoukat Ali.


Reshma was presented with the Pride of Performance Award and Sitara-e-Imtiaz by the government of Pakistan. “I sung many of her tracks at the beginning of my career. I was greatly inspired by her and learnt a lot from Reshma jee. But I could never sing like Reshma. She was a brave lady and although she was ill for the last many years of her career, she still enthusiastically participated at singing events and continued to offer her music services till her death,” Naseebo Lal told The Express Tribune.

Having contributed vastly to Pakistani entertainment, her death proved to be a major blow for the music industry. She breathed her last on November 3, 2013 at a private hospital in Lahore, following a long battle with cancer.

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