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Ilayaraja hails Rahman as “phenomenal”

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Musician A R Rahman, who won the Oscar award for his score in Slumdog Millionaire, said that God's blessings not only helped him win the award but also collect them on behalf of his fellow Indian musicians.

Speaking at a felicitation function organised by the Cine Musicians Union and Trust in Chennai, Rahman said that his parents had sown the seed and that he has only reaped the harvest by winning the Oscars for Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire.

'Its the aspiration of all (the musicians)... God has selected me to collect the award on their behalf," Rahman said.

He repeated "Ella Pugazhum iraivanuke" (All glories go to the Almighty), which he has uttered at the Oscar awards ceremony. Rahman said that he had composed the music amidst a tight schedule and had finished his part in three weeks.

According to him, "The music has some impact in the movie and the Americans start smiling when they hear it."

He also commented that he wondered a few years back why Indian talent, albeit great, such as Ilayaraja, MSV, Naushad and others were not recognised at the Oscars. However he also said that they do not require such an award.

"But, God was seeing all this and so selected me to collect the award (this time)."

Urging websites not to compare between musicians like Ilayaraja and himself, Rahman said, "music–lovers should stop making such comments and using abusive languages."

Heaping laurels on Rahman, maestro Ilayaraja said that there are only a few who possess immense talent and go on to make it big. Rahman is a phenomenal musician. He added, "If MSV is Athara Sruthi, me and Rahman are Panchamams."

He added that Rahman has made every Tamilian proud by winning two Oscars in one year.

On his part, veteran director K Balachander, who had first introduced Rahman in his home production Roja, directed by Maniratnam remarked, "Rahman is a rare genius. When other music composers make castles with their music, Rahman builds monuments'.

Earlier veteran music composers M S Viswanathan, producer A V M Saravanan and playback singer S Janaki spoke on the occassion. Ilayaraja presented Rahman with a golden chain while popular director Harris Jayaraj presented a golden ring to the Mozart of Madras. The function was hosted by by S A Rajkumar and Abu Gabriel of the musicians trust.

Among those who took part included Shankar Ganesh, Deva, Srikanth Deva, Yuvanshankar Raja, Karthik Raja, Vijay Anthony, D Imman, T M Soundararajan, L R Eswari, Karthi, Chinmayi, Thippu, Chitra, Swarnalatha, Mano and drummer Shivamani.

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