‘Blessed to have spent time with him’: Papon remembers Pandit Birju Maharaj

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Pandit Birju Maharaj transcended generations and geographies to touch a chord with different artistes in different ways.

One of them is the singer and composer Papon, which is how the world knows Angaraag Mahanta, who posted a heartfelt tweet after hearing about Maharaj ji’s demise.

In his quest to popularise Assam’s Xatriya dance form, Papon spent time with Maharaj ji and drew an immediate warm response from the maestro, which he has recorded in the second episode of his YouTube series, ‘The Land of the Sacred Beats’.

On Monday, Papon tweeted: “Blessed to have spent time with this greatness of a personality with a heart of a child.” He added that he regretted not being able to meet Maharaj ji again “for what I dreamt with him”.

He was referring to a possible collaboration with Maharaj ji to bring the Xatriya dance into the mainstream. Papon ended his tweet in Assamese: “Xaanti paok teur aataamai! (May your soul rest in peace!)”

Along with the tweet, Papon carried a throwback picture in black-and-white of him with Maharaj ji at the maestro’s home in Delhi.

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