Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

Farishton ki nagri mein main aa gayaa hoon

Posted on: May 29, 2012


This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog.

Among the ‘forgotten’ music directors of the golden era, Snehal Bhatkar is remembered for his immortal song kabhi tanhaayion mein yoon hamaari yaad aayegi. In my case, I remember him for an additional reason. Somehow I felt that he had an unique personality. I am not a face reader 🙂 but when I saw Snehal Bhatkar for the first time on TV some time in 90s (on one of the Marathi channels) he appeared to be to be a self contented man. He was in the TV programme to witness the renditions of some of his popular filmy and non-filmy songs by some young and budding singers. Sitting in the front row with his trade mark white Gandhi cap, he was enjoying the rendition of his songs without any nostalgic reactions on his face. Whenever I see his photographs – old as well as new ones, I get the same impression of a contented man.

After reading some of the anecdotes mentioned in Kidar Sharma’s biography, ‘The one and lonely Kidar Sharma’, I may not be entirely wrong in concluding that having been sounded by Kidar Sharma for composing music for his next two films, Snehal Bhatkar must be a person of pliable and sympathetic nature to make way for Roshan to get the music direction of ‘Neki Aur Badi’ (1949) and later for ‘Baawre Nain’(1950). He must have thought that since Roshan was struggling to make both ends meet, Roshan more than he badly needed the break at that point of time. One can argue that Snehal Bhatkar had no choice but to agree to Kidar Sharma’s request. But I would say that knowing Kidar Sharma’s nature in keeping his promises, things could have been different if Snehal Bhatkar had also pleaded with him for retaining his assignments.

Snehal Bhatkar (real name Vasudev G Bhatkar or V G Bhatkar) was a low profile man and this is evident from a casual search on the internet that not much is known about his early life. Even his birth date and the place of birth are not known. A couple of websites showed his birth day as 17th July without giving the year of birth. Whatever little I know of him about his early career is courtesy of Kidar Sharma’s autobiography referred to above. He began his career as a musician(harmonium) with HMV sometime in the 40s. He came into contact with Kidar Sharma while working on the musical notations of his film ‘Chitralekha’ (1941)for which Jhande Khan was the music director. Kidar Sharma was impressed with his work and promised him that he would take him as the music director when he began producing his own film. Kidar Sharma kept his word and assigned him the music direction of his first home production ‘Neel Kamal’ (1947). Since he was under contract with HMV, he gave music in the name of B Vasudev. Subsequently, he assmed the name of Snehal Bhatkar – the name Snehal was taken from his daughter’s name Snehalata, by which name he is now known in the Hindi film industry.

During his 20 years of active period in the Hindi film industry as a music director, Snehal Bhatkar composed music for 16 films(excluding Children’s Society films) of which 8 were produced/directed by Kidar Sharma, his mentor. ‘Pyaase Nain’ (1989)was his last Hindi film. He also gave music to some Marathi films and composed many non-filmy Marathi devotional and other songs under his real name V G Bhatkar. Very few people know that he sang some of the devotional songs himself. I remember at least one of his Marathi devotional songs Visaava Vithal which used to be often played on Akaashwani ,Mumbai early morning. After listening tothis as well other devotional songs sung in his beautiful voice, I was wondering as to why he did not sing for Hindi films except one or two duet songs. One song I discovered on YT was jaiyo naa bides from ‘Neel Kamal’ (1947) in which Rajkumari and Snehal Bhatkar sing for Madhubala and Raj Kapoor respectively.

A question often comes to my mind as to why Snehal Bhatkar, despite having talent on his side asa music director, was relegated to the background and his contemporaries like SD Burman, Shanker-Jaikishan, Roshan, O P Nayyar, Madan Mohan became the toppers in the list of music directors of the golden era. Beside the luck factor whichis very important in Bollywood to flourish, the main reasons, to my mind was first , he was too simple a man to project himself in the Hindi film industry in a typical Bollywood style where one has to market himself. Second, in keeping with his personality of acontented man, I get a feeling that he was not as ambitious as his contemporaries were. There was not much fire in his belly to achieve a higher scale in his musical carrier. However, with ample time at his disposal, he came out with some of the unique compositions which, in my view, are complex. His compositions were based mainly on folktunes and classical raagas. He rarely used western music. The only film in which I got some feel of the Arabian music was ‘Daku’ (1955).

Some of my favourite songs of Snehal Bhatkar are :

rumjhummatwaare baada chhaa gaye – Suhaag Raat (1948)
kyun shiqwaa karen kyun aah bharen – Pagle (1950)
humpar jaadoo daal gaye – Gunah (1953)
ye khushi ka samaa– Diwaali Ki Raat (1956)
kabhi tanhaayion mein yoon – Hamaari Yaad Aayegi (1961)
aapne huzoor mujhe kyaa se kyaa banaa diyaa – Fariyaad (1964)

Snehal Bhatkar left for the heavenly world on May 29, 2007. His son, Ramesh Bhatkar is one of the top Marathi film and stage actors. He was also seen in many Marathi T V serials and a couple of Hindi T Vserials such as ‘Commander’ and ‘Vikram and Betaal’. His daughter-in-law, ridula Bhatkar (Ramesh Bhatkar’s wife)is a judge in Bomaby High Court.

On the ocaasion of the death anniversary of Snehal Bhatkar, I have chosen one of my favourite songs of him from the film HAMAARI YAAD AAYEGI (1961). The song is ‘farishton ki nagri mein main aa gaya hoon main’ sung by Mukesh. The song written by Kidar Sharma is a description of a typical village life and activities. I like the way Kidar Sharma has described the village life particularly the starting line ‘ fariston kinagri’ ( place of angel. ‘Nagri’ is used in the context of the place). This is an unusual composition not fitting into the general category of bollywood songs. Mukesh has sung this from his heart but Ashok Sharma’s performance on this song does not give the same feeling. I get a feel of the serenity in the song when listening to its audio format with appropriate photos and paintings. Though it is a shorter version it has a different stanza which is not in the video clip.

After listening to this song, I always get a nostalgic feeling about a village life. In fact, Kidar Sharma’s description of a village life matches cent percent of what I had seen in many villages in India during my travels. Incidentally, when this post appears in this blog, I will be in a remote Himalayan village in Himachal Pradesh where I would remember this song.

PS-According to HFGK, this song has two versions. The Mukesh-Mubarak Begam version is part I whereas the Mukesh solo version (described as Kanhaiyya chala dhor ban mein charaane) is part II of the song.

Video (Mukesh Solo)

Audio (Mukesh, Mubarak Begum, Chorus)

Song-Fariston ki nagri mein main aa gayaa hoon (Hamaari Yaad aayegi)(1961) Singer-Mukesh/Mukesh, Mubarak Begum Lyrics-Kidar Sharma, MD-Snehal Bhatkar, Mubarak Begum+Chorus

Lyrics

farishton ki nagri mein main
aa gayaa hoon
main
aa gayaa hoon
farishton ki nagri mein main
aa gayaa hoon
main
aa gayaa hoon
ye raanaayiaan
dekh chakaraa gayaa hoon
main
aa gayaa hoon
main
aa gayaa hoon

yahaan basne waale bade hi niraale
bade seedhe saade
bade bhole bhaale
pati patni mehnat se karate hain kheti
to daadaa ko poti
sahaaraa hai deti
yahaan shirin farhaad kandhaa milaa kar
hain le aate jheelon se nadiyaan bahaa kar
ye chaandi ki nadiyaan bahe jaa rahi hain
kuchh apni zubaan mein kahe jaa rahi hain
farishton ki nagri mein main
aa gayaa hoon
main
aa gayaa hoon

kanhaiyaa chalaa dhor ban mein charaane
to raadhaa chali saath bansi bajaane
baji baansuri neer aankhon se chhaakaa
mujhe ho gayaa hai nashaa halkaa halkaa
parinde mere saath gaane lage hain
ishaaron se baadal boolaane lage hain
hansi dekh kar muskuraane lage hain
kadam ab mere dagmagaane lage hain
farishton ki nagri mein main
aa gaya hoon main
aa gaya hoon
ye raahanaaiyan
dekh ke chakraa gaya hoon
aa gaya hoon main
aa gaya hoon

arre waah lagaa hai yahaan koi melaa
to phir is tarah main phiroon kyoon akelaa
main jhoole pe baithoongaa choosoongaa gannaa
kisi kaa to hoon main bhi hariyaalaa bannaa
o bhaiyyaa ji lo ye duanni sambhaalo
chalo maamaa utro mujhe baithne do
farishton ki nagri mein main
aa gaya hoon main
aa gaya hoon

———————————–
Record Version : Mukesh, Mubarak Begum+Chorus
———————————–
[First and second stanzas are the same as above.
Third stanza below]

liye mathkiyaan hirani yahan aa rahi hain
liye mathkiyaan hirani yahan aa rahi hain
ye jhule se do bulbule gaa rahi hain
o o o o

sarkaar mahal mein jiyaa le do
sarkaar mahal mein jiyaa le do
dildaar mahal mien jiyaa de do
man laage laage re ye jawaani? ?
mahal mein bhi aane do
man laage laage re ye jawaani??
mahal mein bhi aane do

2 Responses to "Farishton ki nagri mein main aa gayaa hoon"

Kamath ji,
Thanks for writing on Snehal Bhatkar,one of Hindi filmdom’s talented but not so successful composer.
I just want to point out about the song-‘ jaiyo ne bides’ from NEELKAMAL-1947.
According to an interview of NARAYAN DATTA,singer/composer of the late 40s and early 50s,as appeared in the Listeners’ Bulletin of shri Hamraz ji,No. 76,published in Feb-89,the song was sung by Narayan Datta,though the name on the record no.26976 appears that of Bhatkar,for reasons unknown.
Even the book ‘ Dhunon ki yatra’ by Pankaj Raag does not mention this song as a song of Bhatkar,though all other songs are mentioned in it.
Since I am out of Mumbai,and on the move currently,I can not give other references.
-AD

Like

This is a song that I like very much, the scenery that runs through this song is beautiful, even if the hero is not able to look convincing. I esp like the little mela scene that comes up.

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