GUWAHATI, April 7 – Singer-composer-lyricist Charu Gohain who enriched the Assamese musical arena with enduring compositions such as Jon jwale kapalot, Rati bahi bai and Mor samadhit, breathed his last at the Guwahati Medical College Hospital (GMCH) around 10-45 this morning.
He was 61 and had been ailing for quite some time. He was admitted to the GMCH about four months back and had been in the hospital except for a brief period in-between.
The singing fraternity deeply mourned his death, terming it a huge void that would be difficult to fill.
Hundreds of admirers thronged the GMCH following the news of the singer’s death this morning. Later, his body was kept at the Swahid Nyas office of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) for some time for allowing the public to pay their last respects to the departed soul. It was then taken to the office of Deepak Sangha with which he had a long association.
His Navagraha residence, too, was visited by hundreds.
Eldest of three siblings – a sister and a brother — Gohain was born at Charaideo Tea Estate in Sivasagar district on September 17, 1951. He had his early schooling at the local LP school before matriculating from the Nazira HS&MP School. He passed the higher secondary examination from the Sivasagar Government HS School. Then he joined the B Borooah College from where he did his graduation.
Gohain had shown his passion and ingenuity for music from a very early age. “As a child artiste he used to perform at school and later his talent blossomed into an artiste’s creativity during his college days,” Parul Gohain Baruah, his sister, said.
Gohain who is widely acclaimed in being the ideal successor to Jayanta Hazarika, effectively carried forward the maestro’s legacy of the soft romantic trend in Assamese music. At the same time, he also exhibited a remarkable penchant for lacing many of his compositions with the fragrance of the soil and the land.
Gohain shot into prominence in the 1970s with his own compositions Jon jwale kapalat and Rati bahi bai. He continued to be a key figure in the State’s musical arena for decades, regaling the audience with his mellifluous voice and soulful numbers. He composed music for theatres as well.
Gohain was writing lyrics almost till his end, with many of his creations remaining unpublished.
Reminiscing about her association with Gohain, singer Manisha Hazarika said that the unmistakable romantic tenor apart, the latter’s love for the land and the people was also ingrained in his compositions.
Singer Tarali Sarma said that Gohain was a gifted artiste with a unique singing style of his own.
As a person too, Gohain was loved by all who came into his contact because of his amiable behaviour and zest for life.
He leaves behind his wife and two married daughters.
His last rites were performed at the Navagraha crematorium.
Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi condoled the death of Gohain, saying that the State had lost a great artiste but his creations would continue to delight and inspire generations.
Various organisations and individuals including Asam Sahitya Sabha have also mourned his death.