Mumbai, Mar 9: It was a meeting of stalwarts, as Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray hosted Lata Mangeshkar and cricket great Sachin Tendulkar at his residence here today.

The occasion on which the three met was to present Tendulkar with a gift, which was handed over to him by the melody queen.

“I am moving into a new house. So, I wanted to have some kind of article which Lata Didi had used, to keep it in my music room. Something like a handkerchief,” Tendulkar said. “When I used to travel to play cricket abroad, I used to listen to music, especially songs sung by Lata Didi. You have been my silent companion,” he said.

Two frames with lyrics of Lata hits ‘Tu jahan jahan chalega’ and ‘Piya tose naina lage re’ were handed to him by the singer. He said he considers Lata like her mother. “She used to bless me like a mother whenever I went to her. I am like her son.”

Lata who showered praises on Tendulkar said, “I loved his cricket a lot. As a human being, also I like him a lot”. She said that many a time, the legendary cricketer had wrongly been declared out by the umpire. “However, he never looked back at the umpire’s decision. I am sad that he has retired from the game. He should have played for some more time,” Lata said.

Meanwhile, Raj said that he considered himself very fortunate to host two Bharat Ratnas at his house. “I consider myself very fortunate that two Bharat Ratnas have come together,” he said.

In the past, Raj had praised both Mangeshkar and Tendulkar at various public platforms and party meetings for their enormous contribution to their respective fields.