New Delhi, June 10 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS) Cutting across party lines, the political royalty of India, even his detractors in the past, on Thursday mourned the passing away of painter M F Husain in London and called him a great artist.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who termed the death a national loss, in a message said Husain was “one of India’s greatest artistic talents.”
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, herself an artist, mourning the death said Husain was a great painter and a versatile genius whose loss is immense.
“You may or may not like one artist’s thoughts, but each artist is in his or her own way different. His death left a void that cannot be fulfilled,” she said in Kolkata.
India’s Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambica Sonia criticized those who saw his works through the communal prism.
“Some narrow minded people saw his art from a narrow view,” she said, while observing that Husain embraced citizenship of Qatar for different reasons and not because he had troubles in India or could not return here.
“He said in an interview the reason of changing his citizenship [facilities in Qatar], I don’t think he stopped loving India,” she said.
Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily in a message said he was a King among the Artists.
“His contribution to art is commendable and he will always be remembered by the country,” he said.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) also mourned the death.
BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said Husain was a great artist and “India has lost a renowned artist today.”
Charitable remarks also poured in from the Shiv Sena and its breakaway group Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS).
“Husain was a national asset,” said Raj Thackeray of MNS, adding that one should forget the past controversies and honour him as a one from Maharashtra.
In a brief remark, Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray said: “May Allah give him peace.”