Pankaj Udhas Fell In Love With Farida At First Sight, Broke Religious Barriers To Marry Her In '80s

The legendary ghazal singer, Pankaj Udhas' love story is nothing short of a Bollywood film. He fell for Farida when he met her for the first time at his neighbour's place.


By Poulami Bhandari Last Updated:


Pankaj Udhas Fell In Love With Farida At First Sight, Broke Religious Barriers To Marry Her In '80s

Pankaj Udhas, the late legendary Indian ghazal and playback singer, left for his heavenly abode on February 26, 2024. The late singer started his career in the industry in 1980. He established himself as one of the best ghazal singers with albums such as Aahat, Mukarrar, Tarrannum, Mehfil, and many more. After this, Mahesh Bhatt asked Pankaj Udhas to sing for his 1986 film, Naam. The singer then rose to immense popularity by lending his voice to Chitthi Aayi Hai.

Amongst several other accolades, the late singer was also awarded the Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian award. While Pankaj Udhas ruled the hearts of millions across the world with his soulful voice, his heart was ruled by one name, Farida. Here is how the singer, whose ghazals mostly talked about love and intoxication, fell in love with his wife in the ‘70s and got married to her.

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Pankaj Udhas fell in love with Farida the first time he met her

Pankaj Udhas was born in Jetpur, Gujarat to a zamindar family on May 17, 1951. Most of his family members had a knack for music, which is why, naturally, he had an inclination towards the same. While he was still learning music and pursuing his graduation that's when he fell head-over-heels in love with his wife, Farida.

Pankaj Udhas met Farida back in 1979 at his neighbour’s house, who had arranged a meeting for them. He instantly fell for her the moment his eyes met hers. He loved her beautiful smile and simplicity. It was love at first sight. During that time, Farida was an air hostess who used to work for Air India. After their first meeting, the duo became friends and used to see each other quite often. Their friendship blossomed into a more profound relationship, and they did not wait much to inform their respective families about the same.

Farida’s family did not want her to get married to Pankaj Udhas

While Pankaj’s family had no objection to the singer’s relationship with Farida, unfortunately, it was not the case with her family. Farida’s family was opposed to their relationship and the reason behind their disapproval was Pankaj’s familial background. While the singer’s family used to be zamindars, Farida’s belonged to the Parsi community. As per the Parsi community rules, an individual marrying outside their clan was generally disavowed by the community back then.

Both Pankaj and Farida did not want to go ahead with their relationship unless their families agreed to it and gave their blessings. The two decided that they would tie the knot only when both Pankaj and Farida’s parents would agree upon it. Hence, they waited for the same, and the singer went on to settle in his career first.

After getting fame, Pankaj Udhas talked to Farida’s father again to ask for her hand in marriage

Pankaj Udhas stepped into the music industry and released his first album, Aahat in 1980. He started receiving offers from Bollywood after the success of his album, and then, for two consecutive years, he released two more albums. After attaining fame and becoming a popular name in the world of Indian classical music, Pankaj decided to talk to Farida’s father one more time and convince him of their marriage.

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Once in an interview, Pankaj Udhas had mentioned the same meeting with his father-in-law. Farida’s father was a retired police officer and Pankaj was very nervous before meeting him. Recalling the meeting, the ghazal singer said that when he visited her father, he listened to him patiently and eventually agreed to their marriage. Pankaj Udhas said:

“If you think you can be happy then go ahead.”

Pankaj Udhas and Farida began their happily ever after in 1982

Finally, on February 11, 1982, Pankaj Udhas married the love of his life, Farida, with both their families’ blessings. After four years of marital bliss, the two were blessed with their first child in 1986, a daughter, whom they named Nayaab. They became a family of four in 1995 when the couple welcomed their second daughter, Reva.

Pankaj and Farida kept most of their personal life under wraps. Once, the ghazal singer had spoken about his life partner, Farida, in an interview. He recalled how their relationship stood the test of time, and she was there for him even during the worst time of his life. Recalling the same, Pankaj Udhas said:

“While I was launching my first album, I ran short of a few thousand rupees. Farida didn’t have money either (we weren’t married then). But the next day she handed over the sum to me. She had borrowed it. Nothing can match this ever! We’ve promised each other that no matter how much we argue, we’ll never fight over religion.” 

Pankaj Udhas passed away due to prolonged illness

Unfortunately, the singer breathed his last on February 26, 2024, and his daughter, Nayaab Udhas released a statement announcing the same. In the statement, it was mentioned that the singer passed away after battling a prolonged illness. People from all over the country sent their deepest condolences to the family during this challenging phase of their lives. The statement can be read as:

“With a very heavy heart, we are saddened to inform you of the sad demise of Padmashri Pankaj Udhar on February 26, 2024, due to a prolonged illness.”

Well, there is no doubt that Pankaj Udhas and Farida’s love story was nothing short of a Bollywood film. Share your thoughts on the same.

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