Dr. Bhupen Hazarika was conferred by the Dada Saheb Falke award in 1992, Padma Shri in 1977, Padma Bhushan 2001 and Bharat Ratna posthumously in 2019 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi government.
Guwahati: Assam pays rich musical tributes to the music Maestro Bharat Ratna Dr. Bhupen Hazarika on his 10th death anniversary. Popularly known as Bhupen Da, the legend was one of the most popular and influential Assamese of all time. Known as the Bard of Brahmaputra, Hazarika was born on September 8, 1926, in the Sadiya town of upper Assam. The music legend passed away on November 5, 2011, at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Mumbai due to old age ailments at the age of 85.
Known for his populist music, some of the evergreen creations of Dr. Bhupen Hazarika are still so fresh and popular amongst the younger generation. Created by Dr. Hazarika and sung by Bharat Ratna Lata Mangeshkar, "Dil hoom hoom kare" from the film Rudali is an all-time hit for India Music lovers. His songs on River Ganga," Bistar hai apar", or on river Brahmaputra "Bistirna Parore", resemble the Gangetic and Brahmaputra civilisation. Numbers of musical tributes organised by the various organisations across Assam on the occasion of Dr. Hazarika's death anniversary. The Assam government pays tribute to the music Maestro at his Samadhi in Jalukbari, Guwahati. All Assam Students Union (AASU) organised a memorial musical program at his statue park in Dighalipukhuri in Guwahati.
Dr. Bhupen Hazarika was not only a legendary singer, and he was a super talented music composer, writer, lyricist, film-maker, poet and pandit.
Hazarika earned his BA degree in 1944 and MA degree in political science in 1946 from the Banaras Hindu University. He received his doctoral degree in Columbia University, New York, United States, in 1952, before he pursued his musical career.
Studying in New York in the early 50s, Hazarika befriended Paul Robeson, a renowned civil rights activist. His influence inspired him to compose the famous song Bistirno Parore, based on the imagery and theme of Robeson's Ol' Man River, which highlighted the rampant racial discrimination in the country.
Hazarika expanded his creative career and directed award-winning Assamese films like Shakuntala Sur (1961) and Pratidhwani (1964). Hazarika also worked in Hindi cinema. Some of his major contributions include composing music for films such as Arop, Ek Pal, and Rudaali. He was awarded the Best Music Director National Award for Rudaali in 1993 and held the position of chairman at the Sangeet Natak Akademi from 1998 to 2003. Dr. Hazarika was conferred by the Dada Saheb Falke award in 1992. He was awarded Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan in 1977 and 2001. The Musical legend was awarded the highest civilian award in India, Bharat Ratna posthumously in 2019 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi government. The music legend was associated with the BJP from 2004 and unsuccessfully contested the 2004 Loksabha election from Guwahati Constituency.