Veteran singer and Padmashri awardee Dipali Borthakur, known as ‘Nightingale of Assam’, breathed her last at a private hospital in Guwahati on December 21 following protracted illness. She was 77.
Borthakur was admitted at a private hospital a few days back with respiratory problems. She died at 1:25 pm on Friday, hospital sources said.
She is survived by her husband Nilpawan Barua, a renowned artist himself.
Borthakur was born in Sivasagar district in 1941. She recorded her first song while studying in class 9. During her singing career spanning around 12 years, Dipali Borthakur lent her voice to numerous immemorial Assamese songs.
A neuron motor disease prevented her from pursuing her singing career and left her wheel-chair bound for most part of her life.
She was honoured with various awards, including the ‘Padmashri’ in 1998, ‘Silpi Bota’ in 2010 and ‘Aideu Handique Silpi Award’ in 2012.
Borthakur’s death has cast a pall of gloom in the entire state, as her admirers and mourners made a beeline to the hospital and her Guwahati residence to pay their last respects.
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal, his cabinet colleagues Chandra Mohan Patowary, Himanta Biswa Sharma, Atul Bora and Naba Doley, among others, have condoled the death of the singer.