Exclusive! Pankaj Udhas on demise of SP Balasubrahmanyam: I have known him from early 80s and exchanged letters on many occasions

The entire Indian film industry is currently mourning the loss of legendary singer SP Balasubrahmanyam who breathed his last at a Chennai hospital today. We got in touch with Pankaj Udhas who has worked with the iconic singer in ‘Sajan’ and has known him closely. Talking exclusively to ETimes, Pankaj Udhas said, “I have known SPB sir from early 80s and have exchanged letters on many occasions like his daughter’s wedding invitation. We had a mutual admiration for each other. He was with us on the board of ISRA (Indian Singers’ Rights Association). It was recently that we met at a zoom meeting of ISRA before he got ill.

Elaborating further, he added, “He, with his inimitable style of singing, broke all the language barriers and became a role model for hundreds of aspiring singers. His demise is a big loss to the music industry. May his soul find ultimate nirvana.”

Pankaj Udhas and SPB both had sung different renditions of ‘Jeeye Toh Jeeye Kaise’ in the 1991 film ‘Saajan’. The movie starred Salman Khan, Sanjay Dutt and Madhuri Dixit in lead roles.

In August, the late singer was hospitalized after he tested positive for COVID-19. However, ON September 4, he tested negative but continued to be on the ventilator and ECMO even as he participated in passive physiotherapy.

The iconic singer has sung over 40,000 songs in as many as 16 languages including Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, and Hindi.