ibnlive » India

Jun 21, 2007 at 11:43pm IST

Tabla record holder fights to survive

Bhubaneswar: A record-breaking tabla player in Orissa is struggling to make ends meet.

Eight years back, Rajat Mishra entered the Guinness Book of Records as the youngest tabla player in the world.

Four years back, he was in the Limca Book of records for being the youngest to play 41 taals on the tabla.

The accolades, and the promises of support that came his way then were overwhelming. But now as the dust settles on his records, this percussionist has little to fall back on.

Rajat's father, a private tutor who was the only earning member of the family, died last month and Rajat may now have to step into his shoes.

Mishra says, “Every month I used to go to Kolkata to learn tabla from my Guru. But all that cannot happen now and after my father's death no one is there to help me."

Rajat's only source of income now is Rs 600 he gets every month from a central government scholarship. That's nowhere near enough for Rajat's mother and brother.

Rajat’s elder brother Sarat Mishra says, “We are in lot of difficulties. Rajat deserves help from the government to continue his music but is not getting any support."

The family will now have to leave their home because they just can't afford the rent.

Rajat had been promised government quarters by the Rourkela steel plant - but that hasn't come through yet either.

For this one time record holder, marching to a different beat might not be an option anymore.

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