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One of the gems of the Hindi film industry, Lata Mangeshkar turns 82 Wednesday and even after spreading the magic of her voice for seven decades she is still singing songs with aplomb.

Thanks to her successful long journey and her body of work, she has become an institution in herself and a guiding force not just for budding singers, but also for established artists.

Also read: Lata is 'pujaarin' of music: Big B

Photos: Lata celebrated her 82nd birthday Wednesday and was presented with the 'Hridaynath Award' for her incredible contribution to the arts.

'It's our good fortune that we have taken birth in the times of Lataji. She is our goddess of music and she is always going to be an inspiration for our generation and the generations to come,' singer Sonu Nigam told IANS. Here is a look at how some big names of Bollywood praise her.

Celebs wish Lataji

Starting her career in 1943 at the age of 13 with the song 'Mata ek sapoot ki duniya badal de tu' for Marathi film 'Gajaabhaau', Lata, who is called the Nightingale of India, went on to record songs for more than 1,000 films in 36 languages.

From classical to romantic numbers to ghazals to bhajans, she made her mark in a variety of genres.  Even at this age her zeal to sing is the same which was evident when she sang 'Tere hasne se' for 'Satrangee Parachute' that released this year.

'Lataji is my teacher, my inspiration and it is because of her that I've loved music so much. I want to wish her all the happiness in the world,' said Shreya Ghoshal.

Shaan says that 'Whatever you say about Lataji is less. All I want to say is that the divinity that she has in her voice is unique and very different. Whatever the song might be, she adds dignity to it. Very subtly she brings out the expressions in a song. She is an institute in herself and the only one among so many.'

Lata, who is the voice behind evergreen lilting melodies like 'Aaja re pardesi', 'Kahi deep jale kahi dil', 'Beeti na bitaai raina', 'Tere bina zindagi se', 'Tere bina jiya jaaye na', 'Naino mein badra', 'Chalte chalte' and 'Yaara sili sili', made it to then Guinness Book of World Records from 1974 to 1991 for having made the most recordings in the world.

Here's a look at why we adore her.

Why we love Lata Mangeshkar

Not just for singers, for actors and filmmakers too, the Bharat Ratna recipient is the voice that gave Hindi songs the quality that will be remembered for years.

'I think for any actress Lataji singing for her is a blessing because we all know what incredible talent she has. We can only hope that she lives for many many years to come and sings forever,' said Dia Mirza.

Filmmaker Yash Chopra feels proud that an artist like Lata was born on Indian soil. 'For an artiste to be at the pinnacle of her career for 69 uninterrupted years is an unprecedented feat in any field anywhere in the world and we are proud that an Indian, our very own Lata Mangeshkar, has achieved this,' Chopra had told IANS.

'I have been fortunate to have worked with her for over five decades from my very first film, 'Dhool Ka Phool' till my most recent film 'Veer Zaara'.  'As a director, I can vouch that Lataji makes each song her own. She adds so many characteristic nuances, making it easier for an actress to enact and for the song to stand the test of time. They say that people follow music, but in Lataji's case, music follows her.' (Text : IANS)

Coming next: Ranbir turns a year older

If you thought being born in the prestigious R.K. Kapoor family would any day ensure a free pass to Bollywood stardom, Ranbir Kapoor would never agree. Ranbir Kapoor, the grandson of legendary Raj Kapoor and the son of former chocolate boy Rishi Kapoor decided to come up the hard way. The video below gives a look at his life.

Ranbir : The star, the man, his girls

Starting his career as an assistant to Sanjay Leela Bhansali during the making of Black, Kapoor made his acting debut with Saawariya opposite debutante Sonam Kapoor. Though the film failed to do well at the box office, Ranbir Kapoor's performance won him many fans and he was also awarded the Filmfare Award for 'Best Male Debut'.  

Click here for photos from his earlier movies

Soon after, Ranbir Kapoor acted in many other movies, playing a variety of roles from a naïve Sikh salesman in Rocket Singh: Salesman Of the Year to a ruthless political heir in Raajneeti to a clueless and carefree youth in Wake Up Sid.
Apart from his various roles, the Kapoor prince is also quite renowned for his string of affairs with many leading ladies from Deepika Padukone to Katrina Kaif to reportedly, a well-known designer who is year older than him.

Look who surprised Ranbir for his birthday

Ranbir's forthcoming projects include Imtiaz Ali's Rockstar with newcomer Nargis Fakhri and Anurag Basu's Barfee, where the Kapoor lad will play the role of a deaf person. (Text :

Coming next: Look who's back

Salman Khan is back. The actor was spotted at the Mumbai international airport late last night and was in his usual chirpy self after undergoing a complicated nerve surgery in the US recently. Our inhouse movie buff Sayoni Sinha has the story. Click here to read.

Coming next : Who's that girl?

Half- English, half- Indian Hazel Keech has made heads turn with her debut act as Kareena Kapoor’s best friend in the blockbuster Bodyguard

Beyond the plain- Jane, bespectacled Maya she plays in Bodyguard , debutante Hazel Keech actually cuts a stunning picture. She did turn heads in the film despite Salman Khan and Kareena Kapoor hogging the limelight during the pre- release publicity blitz. Hazel, 24, who had a Hollywood brush with small roles in three early Harry Potter films, has indeed emerged as Bollywood’s surprise package this season.

 “It was a promotional strategy to keep me under wraps during the publicity campaign of Bodyguard . Atul Agnihotri ( producer of the film) thought it was best that the audience should see me for the first time on screen,” says London- based Hazel, born to an English father and an Indian mother. Life in Bollywood hasn’t taken a dramatic turn despite Bodyguard , though.

Check out the pictures from Bodyguard

 “I am not flooded with offers - not yet. I am getting small roles that don’t interest me. I guess not many people in the industry know my phone number yet so nobody is contacting me,” she grins.

Hazel’s trek in Indian showbiz started a few years ago when she did an item number in the 2007 Tamil hit, Billa , which was a remake of Don . Bharatnatyam lessons she took in England helped her sizzle in the item song, which was performed by Helen in the original 1978 Don . Bodyguard happened by chance. “ I was tired of struggling and had almost packed my bags to go back to London when Atul called,” she recalls with a heavily accented English. “ I am working on my Hindi diction. I know the language because my mom used to speak in Hindi at home but I need to work on the pronunciation.” She is still adjusting to Mumbai. “ People have strange perceptions about single white models here,” says Hazel, who considers Salman as her “ mentor, guide and advisor”.

Read review : Bodyguard

Coming up next: Big brother Sunny will promote Esha film

The Deols, have finally patched up, it seems. Sunny Deol has agreed to promote stepmom Hema Malini’s upcoming film, Tell Me O Kkhuda , starring his half- sister Esha Deol.

Sunny has reportedly also agreed to personally look into the promotional strategy of the film, which is scheduled to clash with Shah Rukh Khan’s biggie, Ra. One , in the Diwali weekend this year. With these reports, the rumours of a rift between Dharmendra’s two families seem to be a thing of the past.

 “ Although Sunny is not a part of Tell Me O Kkhuda , he will join Dharmendra and the film’s cast for the nationwide publicity campaign. Sunny is a superstar and his presence will surely add to the curiosity factor when he shares the same stage with Dharmendra, Hema Malini and Esha,” a source said.

Sunny and Bobby are Dharmendra’s children from his first marriage while Esha and her sister Ahana are daughters of Hema, the veteran actor’s second wife. Over the years, the grapevine has been rife with rumours that the two families don’t gel together.

Hema Malini and her kids

The reticent Deols have mostly avoided reacting to such reports.This will be the first time Sunny will come out openly to endorse anything related in a major way to Hema Malini. The actor has never been vocal about his relationship with his half sisters Esha and Ahana and stepmother Hema so far. Rumours over the years had also suggested that Dharmendra was never in favour of Esha joining the film industry.

However, with Dharmendra agreeing to play a role in Tell Me O Kkhuda , he clearly seems to have had a change of heart.“Sunny’s decision to promote Hema’s film quashes all rumours suggesting the two families don’t get along. For Esha, this film is very important.

It is a heroine- oriented script and she has been struggling to find a foothold in Bollywood in the recent past,” the source added. In fact, sources also added, it was Sunny’s idea to rope in a noted marketing executive to chalk out the marketing strategy for the film.

Check out pictures from Tell Me O Kkhuda

Tell Me O Kkhuda stars Esha with Arjan Bajwa and Chandan Roy Sanyal. While Arjan was seen opposite Priyanka Chopra in Fashion , Chandan carved a niche in Kaminey and F. A. L. T. U . The film directed by Hema also stars veteran actors Vinod Khanna and Rishi Kapoor in important roles. Salman Khan, too has pitched in for a cameo.

The story is about a young girl from a rich family searching for her biological parents. Incidentally, the buzz is that its script is heavily inspired by Dil Aashna Hai - the 1992 Divya Bharti starrer - which narrated a similar story and marked Hema’s debut as a director.

Reproduced From Mail Today.