Sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar dies



Sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar, 92, died in a hospital in United States on Tuesday. He was hospitalised on Thursday after he complained of breathing problem.

Ravi Shankar, who was born on 7 April 1920, often referred to by the title 'Pandit', was an Indian musician and composer who played the plucked string instrument sitar. He had been described as the most known contemporary Indian musician.

In 1956, he began to tour Europe and America playing Indian classical music and increased its popularity there in the 1960s through teaching, performance, and his association with violinist Yehudi Menuhin and rock artist George Harrison of The Beatles.

From 1986 to 1992 he served as a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha of the Parliament of India. Shankar was awarded India's highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 1999, and received three Grammy Awards.

He continued to perform in the 2000s, often with his daughter Anoushka.

Shankar studied Indian classical music as Allauddin Khan's pupil, living with his family in the traditional gurukul system.

Shankar won the Silver Bear Extraordinary Prize of the Jury at the 1957 Berlin International Film Festival for composing the music for the movie Kabuliwala.