Chitra Singh

Chitra Singh (born Shome)[2] is a Bengali Indian ghazal singer. She with her husband Jagjit Singh pulled the ghazal genre out of the drawing room of the elite and brought it to the masses.[3] Respectfully known as the "king and queen of the Ghazal world," the husband and wife duo created some of the most successful Indian music of the 1970s and '80s.[4]

Chitra Singh
Chitra Singh in 2012
Chitra Singh in 2012
Background information
Birth nameChitra Shome[1]
Also known asChitra Dutta
GenresGhazal, Classical, Devotional, Folk
Years active1970–1990

Personal life

After completing her education, Chitra met and married Debo Prasad Dutta, an executive in a leading advertising agency. The match met with the full approval of Chitra's parents because Debo Prasad was a Bengali like herself, belonged to her own community, and hailed from a similar family. The wedding was held in the mid-1950s, and the couple became the parents of a daughter, Monica, in 1959.[5]

While still married to Debo Prasad, Chitra met the dapper and highly talented Jagjit Singh, at that time a struggling singer. They first met at a recording studio in 1967, by which time the marriage of the Duttas was already under strain for unknown reasons.[6] Chitra found solace in Jagjit, and says she was much taken by his 'caring' personality. In 1968, Chitra finally left her husband, took her 9-year-old daughter with her, and began living in a separate residence. In 1969, she divorced her husband, secured custody of Monica, and married Jagjit Singh.[7]

Chitra and Jagjit became the parents of a son, Vivek. Chitra Singh formed a ghazal singing duo with her husband Jagjit Singh, and the couple achieved great success. Vivek died in a road accident on 27 July 1990, which was a terrible shock to his parents. Chitra has never sung in public, or recorded any song, since the day her son died.

More suffering was in store for Chitra. Her daughter from her first marriage, Monica, had two unhappy marriages and committed suicide in 2009 aged 50. Monica fell in love with Jehangir Chowdhary, an award-winning cinematographer by profession, and married him in 1988. The couple became the parents of two sons, Armaan and Umair. In 2005, she divorced him and married British national Mark Houghton Roger Atkins, who was working as managing director of a firm based in Vikhroli, Mumbai. In 2007, she filed a case of harassment against her second husband. In 2008, a magistrate issued a non-bailable warrant against Atkins, who had already left the country. In 2009, Monica committed suicide, aged 50. She was survived by her two sons, Armaan (17) and Umair (12).[8][9]

Two years after this tragedy, Chitra's second husband, Jagjit Singh, died of a brain haemorrhage in 2011. She lives with her grandsons.


  • A Milestone (1976)
  • The Unforgettables (1978)
  • Gold Disc (1979)
  • Ae mere dil (1980)
  • The earliest recordings of Jagjit and Chitra Singh
  • Live in concert with Jagjit Chitra Singh
  • Live at Wembley
  • Live at Royal Albert Hall
  • The Latest
  • Desires
  • Arth/Saath Saath
  • Chirag


  1. ^ "Flying solo with Chitra Singh".
  2. ^ Sahara, Rashtriya. "Rashtriya Sahara, Volume 5, Issues 1-6". Google Books. Sahara India Mass Communication. Retrieved 28 April 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Chitra Singh daughter found hanging; was depressed, says family".
  4. ^ "Jagjit & Chitra Singh".
  5. ^
  6. ^ First meeting
  7. ^ "Jagjit called me Mummy, I called him Papa - Chitra Singh".
  8. ^ Monica Chowdhary dies by suicide
  9. ^ "Triple tragedy for Jagjit Singh's wife Chitra".

External links