Legendary composer Khayyam passes away at 92
The veteran musician is immortalized by his songs in Kabhie Kabhie, Shola Aur Shabnam, Umrao Jaan and Razia Sultan
Legendary composer Khayyam passed away aged 92 in Mumbai on Monday night. He was suffering from lung infection and other age-related issues and was admitted to the ICU since July 28. The hospital declared cardiac arrest as the cause of death. He is survived by his wife, singer Jagjit Kaur.
Mohammed Zahur Khayyam Hashmi is known for the films Shola Aur Shabnam, Aakhri Khat, Sankalp, Kabhie Kabhie, Trishul, Umrao Jaan, Bazaar and Razia Sultan. He won the National Film Award for his work in Umrao Jaan in 1981. He was honoured with the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 2011.
Khayyam was born in pre-partition Punjab and learned music from Ghulam Ahmed Chishti, better known as Baba Chishti, in Lahore. He briefly worked in the army during the Second World War before moving to Bombay. He made his debut as the former half of the duo Sharmaji-Varmaji, composing for the 1948 film Heer Ranjha. An early break came with the song"Akele mein wo ghabrate to Honge" from the film Biwi (1950), voiced by Mohammad Rafi. His other notable collaborators include Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhonsle, Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan, Kishore Kumar and Mukesh.
Mourning Khayyam’s death, Lata Mangeshkar tweeted, “Legendary musician and earnest human being Khayyam is no more among us. I cannot express how saddened I am to hear this. An era of music ends with Khayyam Sahab. I extend my humble tribute to him.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his sadness at the passing of the musical legend. “India will remain grateful to Khayyam Sahab for giving us some of the most memorable compositions, which will be remembered forever. He will also be remembered for his humanitarian gestures to support upcoming artists. His demise is extremely saddening.”
Amitabh Bachchan, who worked with Khayyam in Kabhie Kabhie and Trishul, shared, “a legend in music .. a soft spoken amiable soul .. one that contributed to several films and some of the more important ones of mine .. passes away .. KHAYAM sahib .. for all the memorable music he conducted and produced .. prayers condolences.”a