IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


27th February, 2023 Culture

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Context:  In his Mann ki Baat address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke of several musical instruments and folk artists who he hoped would “continue to inspire everyone at the grassroots towards making performing arts more popular”.


Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar:

  • It is conferred upon “emerging, talented artists in the field of music and performing arts”.
  • Uppalapu Nagamani is the winner of the Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar 2021 for Carnatic Instrumental.


  • Sursingar is a stringed musical instrument that is similar to the sarod, but which is older and produces deeper notes.
  • The instrument is made of wood and has a gourd attached to a hollow wooden handle with a metal fingerboard.
  • The strings of the instrument, usually four in number and made of brass or bronze, are plucked with a metal pick.
  • The Sursingar can be played either holding it vertically in front of the musician and supported by his left shoulder like the Veena, or holding it parallel to the ground like the Sarod, or like the Sitar, which is held at an angle of 50-60 degrees to the ground.
  • The Sursingar (along with the Rudra Veena and the Surbahar) usually accompanies Dhrupad, the genre of Hindustani vocal music which has a low, deep, and thoughtful pitch.
  • With very few artisans now making the Sursingar, the instrument is rarely used in performances. 
  • Multi-instrumentalist Joydeep Mukherjee is credited with reviving the Sursingar, along with another “lost” stringed instrument, the Radhika Mohanaveena, named after its creator, Radhika Mohana Maitra.


  • Mandolin is another stringed instrument, usually with eight strings that are plucked with a pick, similar to a lute.
  • The Mandolin is a moderately sized instrument, smaller than the Veena, Sitar, or guitar, and was developed in Europe in the 18th century as an evolution of the older Mandora (Mandola).
  • The instrument’s modern form and proportions were strongly influenced by its maker Pasquale Vinaccia of Naples (1806-82), and in the 20th century, it was built in a family of sizes from soprano to contrabass.
  • The Mandolin has long been part of the Indian film music tradition
  • The greatest exponent of the Mandolin in Indian classical music was the late Uppalapu Srinivas, often known as ‘Mandolin’ Srinivas
  • India’s best known Mandolinists today are Snehashish Mozumder, Pradipto Sengupta, and N S Prasad.


  • Karakattam is an ancient folk dance of Tamil Nadu in which performers in colourful saris dance with a pot (karakam) on their head to invoke Mariamman, the goddess of rain.
  • V Durga Devi of Salem is a well known Karakattam dancer.


  • Raj Kumar Nayak: organised the Perini Odissi, which lasted for 101 days in 31 districts of Telangana”, and whom people now refer to as “Perini Rajkumar”.
  • Saikhom Surchandra Singh: “known for his mastery in making Meitei Pung instrument whic) has connections with Manipur”
  • Pooran Singh: a Divyang Artist who is popularising various music forms such as Rajula-Malushahi, Nyuli, Hudka Bol, Jagar.


Q) Which of the following statements are correct with reference to Mandolin?

a. It is an ancient folk dance of Tamil Nadu.

b. The greatest exponent of the Mandolin in India was Uppalapu Srinivas.

         I.    Only a

        II.    Only b

       III.    Both a and b

        IV.    Neither a not b

Answer: Option II