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Anoushka, Norah patch up with tattoo sisterhood

H S Rao (Press Trust of India)

Posted: May 10, 2003 at 1656 hrs IST

As a mark of their cherished friendship forged after burying the differences of the past, the daughters of Indian sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar have decided to sport identical star tattoos on their back.

The sisters, Anoushka Shankar and Norah Jones, who for most part of their lives did not see each other, are now trying to know each other more. "It has been wonderful getting to know Norah. I finally have a sister I have always wanted. She came to us when I was 16 and by the first year we were already close," London-born Anoushka who was nominated for Grammy awards this year said.

Norah Jones, the celebrity daughter of Shankar and a recepient of eight Grammies had a tense meeting with her half-sister Anoushka five years ago after which their relationship showed signs of improvement.

Shankar, who was granted an honorary knighthood by the queen last year, said "they have so much in common it is mind-boggling... In their looks, their behaviour, in the way they are so quick-witted."

"She is an adoring sister to Anoushka. The tattoos reflect a cherished friendship forged after putting aside the differences of their childhoods which has been overtaken by the similarities of the present," Shankar, who is to embark on a British tour with daughter Anoushka, said.

The father and daughter duo would be sharing the stage at Barbican Centre on May 18. While Jones gave an exhilarating performance in New York on Friday night performing hit numbers from her debut album "Come Away With Me".

Norah was raised in Texas by her mother Sue Jones, after Shankar married Sukanya, Anoushka's mother.

For Jones her father popularly known as "godfather of world music" was an elusive figure who disappeared when she was nine only to resurface when she was 18. "Everything has changed now. For the past five years we have reconciled and have been very close," Jones said adding, "I am proud of Anoushka and she is proud of me and we get along very well."

Meanwhile, Anoushka in an interview to London's Evening Standard said, "It has been wonderful getting to Norah. I was in the middle of a lesson with my father when she rang. It was a voice of a soft-spoken girl on the other end of the phone who wanted to speak to Ravi Shankar.

"When she said who she was I was stunned because by then I had totally given up on the idea that we would have any contact with her," Anoushka said.

"She and I have a beautiful relationship. She is incredible. She really has one of the best voices out there. It's wonderful to see someone like her with that kind of substance and integrity getting success," Anoushka said.

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