Grandson Among 3 Arrested For Theft Of Bismillah Khan Shehnais

Ustad Bismillah Khan playing the wood and silver shehnai during one a concert. - Sakshi Post

Varanasi: A grandson of late Ustad Bismillah Khan and two other persons were arrested in connection with the theft of the maestro's silver shehnais.

Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force arrested Nazare Hussain, local jeweller Shanker Seth and his son Sujit Seth. Four silver shehnais and a wood and silver one were stolen from Khan's son Kazim Hussain's home here on December 4. The shehnais were recovered in a melted condition from a local jewellery shop here, police said. Kazim's son Nazare got the four silver shehnais melted by jewellers Shanker and Sujit Seth in Chetganj area here, they said.

Ustad Bismillah Khan was perhaps single-handedly responsible for making the shehnai a famous classical instrument. He brought the shehnai to the center stage of Indian music with his concert in the Calcutta All India Music Conference in 1937. He was credited with having the almost monopoly over the instrument as he and the shehnai are almost synonyms.

"Over one kg of melted silver along with one shehnai made of wood and silver have been recovered from the possession of the jewellers. The stolen shehnais were sold to the local jewellers for a meagre Rs 17,000 and melted," said STF SSP Amit Pathak.

An FIR was registered on December 5 at Chowk police station after the theft at Kazim's house in Dalmandi area. According to the family, the shehnais were very special to the late musician and were gifted to him by former Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao, Kapil Sibal and Lalu Prasad.

Back to Top