National Award Winner Vanraj Bhatia Has No Money, Battles Ailments
Music composer Vanraj Bhatia is struggling to make ends meet.
Vanraj Bhatia won the National Award for Best Music for Govind Nihalani’s Tamas in 1988 Aand the Padma Shri in 2012. At 92, the veteran music composer, who carved his niche with his distinct notes in the art cinema circuit of the seventies and the eighties, says that he is has no money. He is also battling old-age ailments.
“I don’t even have a rupee in my bank account,” Bhatia told Mumbai Mirror, as he battles memory lapses, severe knee pain and hearing problem. His only company is his domestic help, and Bhatia is now being forced to sell his imported crockery and other household items for sustenance.
“I don’t even have a rupee in my bank account,” Bhatia said, as he battles memory lapses, severe knee pain and hearing problem.
The help, who has been with him for around a decade, said that Vanraj Bhatia has not sought medical consultation in a long time, so it is difficult to pin-point the status of his failing health.
Some of Bhatia’s friends and admirers are striving to raise money for his medical care. Monthly sums donated by foundations are helping him sustain, but that doesn’t seem to be enough.
The music composer’s body of work includes films such as Kundan Shah’s Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro, Aparna Sen’s 36 Chowringhee Lane, and Prakash Jha’s Hip Hip Hooray.
From Ankur (1974) to Sardari Begum (1996), he was the favourite composer of Shyam Benegal. The duo collaborated on several projects including Manthan, Bhumika, Junoon, Kalyug, Mandi, Trikaal and Suraj Ka Saatvan Ghoda.
A recipient of Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1989, Bhatia studied western classical music at Royal Academy of Music, London.
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