Gangubai Hangal’s granddaughter Vaishnavi Hangal maintains museum was not broken open
The row over alleged breaking open of the lock of Gangubai Hangal Museum of Music took a new turn on Saturday with Gangubai’s granddaughter Vaishnavi (Anita) Hangal announcing that the museum would remain closed for the next two months and any further programme at ‘Ganga Lahari’ (Gangubai Hangal’s residence) would be held with the consent and in the presence of her father Baburao.
Addressing a press conference along with Mahesh Hangal (Gangubai’s second son Narayanrao’s son) and family friend and Sri Ram Sena chief Pramod Mutalik and others at ‘Ganga Lahari’ on Saturday, Ms. Vaishnavi. however, maintained that the museum was not broken open as her uncle Mr. Narayanrao had the museum’s key. On Monday, at a press conference in Hubballi, Gangubai’s eldest son nonagenarian Baburao had alleged that his daughter (Ms. Vaishnavi) and her husband Mahesh Talakad had broken open the museum to his utter shock. He had also lodged a complaint with the Hubballi police. However, no case has been registered yet.
Throughout the press conference, Ms. Vaishnavi maintained that she did not break open the museum against her father’s wish and would lock the museum and return to Mysuru where she runs music school named after her grandmother Gangubai Hangal. “Any decision on reopening the museum, or continuing Gangubai’s musical tradition at ‘Ganga Lahari’ will be taken by my father and uncle. I will abide by it,” she announced, reiterating that she had opened the museum only to keep it tidy.
Mahesh Hangal, too, maintained that there was no need to break open the museum as his father Mr. Narayanrao also had the key and Mr. Vaishnavi had opened it to clean it. He said in case she had broken open the lock, his father would have objected and it was not the case.
Earlier, Ms. Vaishnavi said that pained by reports in a section of the media that ‘Ganga Lahari’ had become silent and was in a state of neglect, she came from Mysuru along with Mr. Talakad and opened the museum to clean. “With the assistance of my cousins (two sons of Mr. Narayanarao) we made preparations to make ‘Ganga Lahari’ active again on Ugadi. However on April 11, I received a call from the suburban police station saying that my father had complained against me alleging that I had broken open the museum and misplaced musical instruments. Subsequently, my father also addressed a press conference, which has shocked the Hangal family,” she said, adding that she had no commercial interests.
Ms. Vaishnavi said her father Mr. Baburao had always stood behind her in her growth as a musician and probably he was misled by a third person, who did not like the growth of Hangal family.
Mr. Mutalik said he had intervened in the matter as he had close ties with the family. “I have spoken to both sides and a communication gap is the reason for the whole fiasco. Ms. Vaishnavi, Mr. Baburao and all of us want the musical tradition of ‘Gangajji’ to continue and it will happen soon after the misunderstandings are cleared,” he said. Mr. Narayanrao’s daughter-in-law and vocalist Veena Hangal, advocate and musician Jnaneshwar Warang said they wanted music to reverberate again at ‘Ganga Lahari’.