Make Puri, Konark temples tourist friendly: Anandji Virji Shah

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Noted music director Anandji Virji Shah of famous composer duo Kalayanji-Anandji has suggested to the state government to make the Jagannath temple in Puri and Konark ‘tourist friendly’. He suggested this to tourism minister Maheshwar Mohanty when the latter presented him the Akshaya Samman award here on Friday.

“Facilities and provisions in both the temples are not adequate, especially for senior citizens, who visit the places in large numbers from across the country every day. The temples should be clean and hygienic and there should be rest sheds for them,” Anandji told ToI in an interview here on Saturday. Giving the example of Gujarat’s Somnath temple he said, “The whole process of darshan is so smooth and hassle free. Everything is so organized there.”

The veteran music composer also suggested, “A film should be made on the marvelous monument of Konark Sun Temple in different languages, which should be shown to visitors before entering the temple. It would help them in understanding the architectural grandeur better and to view the intricate carvings on the temple walls.”

Anandji was in the city to receive the sixth Akshaya Samman for his contribution to the field of music. “I am overwhelmed by the love and affection of Odia people for Akshaya Mohanty. He was a legend in the true sense. And I am glad that the award in his name is not restricted to any language but to people who contributed to music,” he said.

Describing today’s film music as ‘fast food’, Anandji said, “Society has changed. Everything has become so superficial. There is no emotion either in real life or in films. There is no storyline based on which a music director would compose a soulful and soothing song. Rather songs these days are composed for dance sequences like ‘Jalebi bai’, ‘Bijli bai’ and so on.” He added, “The main aim of music was to improve the society from its drawbacks but now it is not fulfilling its purpose. But old things will revive again and time will make everything right.”

On reality shows, Anandji said, “It is our duty to provide a platform to the next generation talents but we cannot impose something on them. Success does not always mean to be a playback singer but if you have knowledge and you are a good human being then you are a successful person.


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