By Saptakala Bureau
Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty, an Indian Hindustani classical vocalist, is conferred Padma Bhushan this year in the field of Art. He was given the Padma Bhushan Award, the third highest civilian award in India this year 2020. Born 25 December 1952, he has received several prestigious awards including the Padma Shri (2011), Sangeet Natak Akademi Award (Delhi, 1999–2000), Kumar Gandharva National Award (1993) and the Best Male Playback Singer Award (Bengali Film “Chhandaneer” 1990) (“For bringing the rare depth of emotion, adorned by his command on the classical idiom”) and National Tansen Samman 2015 – by the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh. He has also received felicitations from both the former and present Chief Ministers of his own State, West Bengal. In 2012, Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee conferred him the Maha Sangeet Samman and the Banga Bibhushan, two of the State’s highest awards. In 2015 he has received Guru Jnan Prakash Ghosh Lifetime Achievement Award.
He also was awarded honorary citizenship in New Orleans, after performing with jazz musicians at Preservation Hall, the birthplace of jazz music. He was the first Indian classical vocalist to be invited by Pakistan and China and by BBC for their Golden Jubilee Celebration of India’s Independence. He has performed in some of the most prestigious venues around the world such as Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, New Orleans Jazz Preservation Hall in the US, the Royal Albert hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall in the UK, and Theatre de la Ville in France. Inspired by the ideals of his Guru Jnan Prakash Ghosh, Chakrabarty founded Shrutinandan, a school of music.
Saptakala salutes the legendary and congratulate him on receiving the Padma Bhushan Award.