Malika Pukhraj (born 1912 - 2004) was a highly popular singer of Pakistan. Malika Pukhraj who was coached by Ustad Allah Buksh
(father of Bare Ghulam Ali Khan) joined Maharaja Hari Singh’s court when she was only 8. Over the next 8 decades
she captivated her audience with her command over the singing genres of Thumri, Ghazal, Bhajan and folk Pahari Geet. Malika
Pukhraj received the Presidential Pride of Performance Award, Pakistan. In mid 80's she was also awarded with the legend of
Voice award from All India Radio.
She had melodious voice from childhood. She received music lessons in a Delhi sojourn from very strict Ustads. –
arduous "Nirith Bhav". One of her teacher has been quoted as Ustad Mubarik Ali Khan. Father of Bare Ghulam Ali Khan
Sahib also nurtured her. At the age of 9 appointed at the Darbar of Maharaja Hari Singh of Kashmir. She remained there for
nine years - performed at the coronation ceremony of the Maharaja. Maharaja was also an amateur singer. Once she laughed in
Maharaja’s Darbar on some funny happening – This being viewed as contempt and was warned by Janak Singh.
Due to some intrigues she left the Kashmir State service. She had never performed publicly before that. Afterwards she was
associated with Lahore Radio Station. She has a distinct and clear style of rendering Ghazals. Her tunes matched the theme.
Folk singing by her is in most natural style. Her voice is most suitable for Pahari Songs. She also occasionally sings for
At the time of independence there were in all four film studio in Pakistan (all at Lahore) including two studios of Dilsukh
Pancholi. One of the Pancholi Studios was initially allotted to Afzal Himaliyawala but the allotment was cancelled in 1954
and the same was re-allotted to Malika Pukhraj.(renamed as Malika Studio).
Mr. G.N. Joshi pays tribute “Malika Pukhraj’s silvery rich voice and her superb expressive style were
ideally suited for rendering romantic ghazals and dadras; she used to present them in such an arresting manner that listeners
were at once held spellbound. She displayed rare virtuosity in diverse types of songs for the recordings for gramophone discs
and during radio broadcasts. While the ghazals appealed most to the sensuous, her dadras had a unique charm..”