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Girija Devi "ties the ganda" disciple

Friday, May 19, 2006

Varanasi (UNI): Queen of Thumri Padma Vibhushan Girija Devi has established an eternal bond with her disciple, the known singer Malini Awasthi, in an age-old ritual in the ''guru-shishya'' traditions. At a function in her house in Sanjay Nagar Colony here on Thursday night, the veteran singer, whose name has become synonymous with Thumri and Kajari, performed the unique 'Ganda Bandhan' ceremony, tying a sacred thread on Awasthi's wrist.

'' Tying the 'Ganda' on a disciple's hand means that the latter has gained perfection in the art and the guru-shishya relationship changes into a bond of blood,'' said the versatile singer, fondly called 'Appaji'. Awasthi is the 12th disciple who has been tied the 'Ganda' by her. ''Being tied with the sacred thread by Appaji is the greatest achievement of my life,'' said Awasthi, also the wife of Chairman of Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited Avnish Awasthi. ''From now on I share a blood relationship with Appaji and the sorrow and happiness in her family will be mine,'' she added. The grand ceremony was attended, among others, by Padma Vibhushan tabla vitruoso Kishan Maharaj and renowned vocalist Sajan Mishra.

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