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Music maestro Rashid Khan, who was undergoing treatment for prostate cancer in Kolkata, dies at 55
Rashid Khan
Photo Courtesy: ShareAlike 4.0 International/Wikimedia Commons

Music maestro Rashid Khan, who was undergoing treatment for prostate cancer in Kolkata, dies at 55

| @indiablooms | 09 Jan 2024, 05:02 pm

Eminent vocalist Rashid Khan, who was the 10th generation face of the Rampur Sahaswan gharana, died at a hospital in Kolkata after battling cancer.

He was 55.

According to reports, he was suffering from prostate cancer.

Rashid Khan and his musical journey

Blessed with a full-throated baritone voice, Khan is the 10th generation face of the Rampur Sahaswan gharana.

According to reports, he was honoured to be singled out by iconic Indian classical singer Pandit Bhimsen Joshi to sing a jugalbandi with him.

Khan once told The Asia Age that Joshi used to send with fondness special “paan” leaves for him from Satara.

Khan said there was a need to serve young generations with new songs.

“Khaana khane ke baad meetha bhi bahut zaroori hai, ye baat buzurgon ne kaha hai (After the main course, something sweet is necessary too; even the elders have said this)," he told The Asian Age once.

Khan, who considered Ustad Amir Khan sahib, Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, as his icons, was born at Badayun city in Uttar Pradesh on July 1, 1968.

He received his initial training from his maternal grand-uncle, Ustad Nissar Hussain Khan (1909–1993). He is also the nephew of Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan.

Rashid Khan gave his first concert at age eleven, and the following year, 1978, he performed at an ITC concert in Delhi.

In April 1980, when Nissar Hussain Khan moved to the ITC Sangeet Research Academy (SRA), Calcutta, Rashid Khan also joined the academy at the age of 14.


He was awarded the Padma Shri, as well as the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 2006. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian award, in 2022 by the Indian Government in the field of Art.

He also rendered his voice to the popular Bollywood song 'Ayoge Jab Tum' from the movie Jab We Met by director Imtiaz Ali.


Moruning his demise, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said his dedication to music enriched the cultural world and inspired generations. 

"Pained by the demise of Ustad Rashid Khan Ji, a legendary figure in the world of Indian classical music. His unparalleled talent and dedication to music enriched our cultural world and inspired generations. His passing leaves a void that will be hard to fill. My heartfelt condolences to his family, disciples and countless admirers," PM modi said.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who was on an official visit to South 24 Parganas district, returned to the city this evening and visited the hospital to pay her tributes to the maestro.

Speaking to the media, she said: "The death of the singer is a great loss for the entire country and the entire music fraternity. I am in a lot of pain as I still can't believe that Rashid Khan is no more."

BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari posted on X: "I am deeply saddened to learn that Padma Bhushan Ustad Rashid Khan has left for his heavenly abode. The sad and untimely demise of the Music Maestro would create a huge void in the sphere of Music especially Hindustani Classical Music. I offer my sincere condolences to his family members, colleagues & peers and innumerous fans & admirers. May his soul rest in peace."

BJP leader and fashion designer Agnimitra Paul said: "I am sad and shocked to loose my elder brother Ustad Rashid Khan A star is lost from the Indian Classical arenaHe and his family was my family. A wonderful humble person and an extraordinary artist My BHAI. You have created a void in my life. You will be missed by MILLIONS."

Film director and politician Raj Chakraborty wrote on X: "I still can't believe that you're no more. It's so heartbreaking. There'll never be another you. I hope you find peace Rashid ji. #RIP #RashidKhan."

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