Sonia pays tribute to Mrinalini Sarabhai

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New Delhi, Jan 21 (IANS) Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday paid tributes to danseuse Mrinalini Sarabhai who passed away on Thursday, saying that apart from contributions to India’s cultural landscape, she was an inspiring teacher, a staunch nationalist and patriot.

In a letter to her daughter Mallika Sarabhai, who is a classical dancer as well as an activist, Gandhi wrote: “I am sad to learn of the passing away of your beloved mother.

“Throughout her long, active and fulfilled life, Mrinalini Sarabhai contributed richly to our cultural landscape, through the talent and passion that imbued everything she did.

“She was an inspiring teacher to thousands of students at her Darpana Academy, and an exceptionally gifted and productive dancer, choreographer and writer,” read the letter.

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“Mrinalini ji was, moreover, a staunch nationalist and patriot, who courageously defended our pluralistic culture and secular values. In this, she was upholding the proud tradition of her own parents who were such brave freedom fighters.

“At this time of grief, you must draw solace from the fact that your mother must have taken great pride in the courage and conviction with which you yourself have always acted and spoken out against prejudice and discrimination, and that you carry forward her wonderful legacy as a dancer as well.

“We will always honour Mrinalini Sarabhai’s memory, just as we continue to honour the memory of your brilliant father, Vikram Sarabhai.”

Padma Bhushan recipient Mrinalini Sarabhai died in Ahmedabad on Thursday following age-related complications at the age of 97.

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