Today, not just our nation, but the world has lost one of the greatest singers to have ever lived, India's nightingale, Lata Mangeshkar. A truly legendary artist, her songs have expressed love, grief, anguish, and every emotion under the sun for over 70 years. 

Lata Mangeshkar
Source: Tribune India

And while it's impossible to associate just one song with her, it is also true that one of the first songs that come to mind when we think of Lata ji, is Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon. 

There's an endless list of songs when it comes to expressing patriotism in India. But if there is one song that has stood the test of time and continues to evoke the same sense of love and pride for the country as it did years ago, it is Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon.

Source: YouTube

Penned by Kavi Pradeep and sung by the late Lata ji, this song defined patriotism for most of us.

Written as a tribute to the Indian soldiers who sacrificed their lives in the Indo-China war of 1962, this song gives us goosebumps, till date.

Source: Twitter

The song was first performed live by Lata Mangeshkar on 26th January 1963 at the National Stadium in New Delhi. It was reported that Lata Mangeshkar even turned down the offer of singing this song, but Kavi Pradeep was adamant to have her sing it at any cost.

Source: TBI

From its composition to overwhelming performance, everything about this song is so heartfelt and pure. It has the power to move every Indian to tears - and when Lata ji first performed it, our then PM Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru was actually moved to tears. 

Even today, listening to this song in Lata ji's mellifluous voice sends us down memory lane. It is the power of her voice that brings alive the innumerable sacrifices made by the heroes of our country.

Jab desh mein thi diwali vo khel rahe the holi
jab ham baithe the gharon mein 
Woh jhel rahe the goli.
The dhanya jawaan woh apne 
thi dhanya woh unki jawaani 
Jo shahid hue hain unki zara yaad karo qurbaani.

Every day, this song inspires us and reminds us to never forget the sacrifices of our soldiers fighting on the border.

Tum bhool na jaao unko 
is liye kahi ye kahaani 
jo shaheed...
Source: NDTV

Years later, Lata ji once again performed the song live, and left everyone mesmerized, yet again. 

There will never be another patriotic song like this, and there will never be another legend like Lata ji.