February 23, 2006
‘I sing for the peace and harmony of all
communities’. My only purpose is to establish peace and communal harmony in India through my music”
Seema Anil Sehgal
Resident of Seven Bungalows
By: Mayank Soni
IN today’s times, where we need films like Swades and Rang De Basanti to instill in us a feeling of patriotism, Seema Anil Sehgal is one citizen who has been living this credo – through singing.
A resident of Seven Bungalows, Sehgal has recently been conferred the Hakim Khan Sur Award (2005 -06) for her ‘lasting contribution in the field of national integration’, through her singing and music compositions.
The award instituted by the Maharana Mewar Foundation, Udaipur, will be presented to her at the City Palace, Udaipur, on Mar 5, followed by a live concert where she will perform.
Says 45-year-old Sehgal, “My only purpose is to establish peace and communal harmony in India by making meaningful music and singing soulful poetry.”
Sehgal believes that India has faced too many communal tensions and “music is one of the ways through which bridges can be built across communities, states and nations,” she adds.
Born in Jammu and Kashmir, Sehgal was always inclined towards singing and graduated from the Bharatiya Kala Kendra, Delhi in 1983, with a degree in Sangeet Visharad.
Sehgal began writing poetry in Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi and Dogri languages. In 1996, she came to Mumbai with her husband and started singing at small shows and concerts.
In 1998, she released the music album Sarhad, and dedicated the album to peace between India and Paksitan. Her happiest moment was when the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee presented the album to his Pakistani counterpart in the Lahore Summit, 1999.
Since Jan 2002, Sehgal has been singing in concerts with a special theme titled, Lahoo Ka Rang Ek Hai. Says Sehgal, “I sing in different parts of the country and promote national integration. The lyrics in my songs forces people to think about the
various tensions that communities in India go through and what can be done to bring back peace.”