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

Shaam ke deepak jaley

Posted on: April 10, 2013

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

It is such a frustrating exercise to get information on a poet-lyricist whom I admire for his light romantic and neo-devotional lyrics of Hindi non-filmy songs. Yes, many connoisseurs of Hindi NFSs may have correctly guessed him as Madhukar Rajasthani. I got familiar with his name only because of Vividh Bharati. It is surprising that not much information about him is available on the internet or in any other published materials. There was a time when at least one of the songs written by him used to be played in an early morning programme of devotional songs or in the afternoon programme of sugam sangeet (light semi-classical songs).

Madhukar Rajsathani specialised in writing devotional songs (bhajans) and lyrical poems (geet). He gave a different imagery to the praise of Lord Krishna and Krishna leela while writing devotional songs. The fact that some of the top playback singers sang NFSs written by him shows the respect they had for him as a poet. Many of the bhajans and geets written by him were as popular as film songs. They continued to remain popular even today despite the shift of preference of the new generation towards Hindi film songs seasoned with western music. Some of the bhajans written by him about five decades ago like ‘Shyaam ne neha lagaay’, ‘paaon padoon tore Shyaam’, ‘tere bharose nandlala’ and geets like ‘tum aao rimjhim karte’, ‘sajani nathali se toota moti re’, ‘ye aawara raaten’ have remained evergreen.

Madhukar Rajsthani did write lyrics for about 20 Hindi films which included ‘Bhed’ (1950), ‘Deepak’ (1951), ‘Sheesham’ (1952), ‘Madmast’ (1953). ‘Deewali Ki Raat’ (1956), ‘Gokul Ka Chor’ (1959), ‘Rahul’ (1964), ‘Sangram’ (1965), ‘Arabian Nights’ (1967) etc. As can be guessed from the names of the films, success eluded him in his filmy ventures.

Here is one of his beautiful lyrical poems ‘shaam ke deepak jale’ (C.1960) sung by Mohammed Rafi and composed by Vinod Chatterjee. The poem is befitting of a ‘chhayageet’ song and Rafi’s somewhat unusual rendition bereft of his filmy style is like an icing on the cake. This song is one of my favourite NFSs sung by Rafi. Vinod Chatterjee was one of Begum Akhtar’s favourite composers in All India Radio, Lucknow when she used to visit the AIR Studio for recording her ghazals in the 40s. Although Begum Akhtar composed ghazals and tumris herself, she would often request Vinod Chatterjee to recompose many of her ghazals. Madan Mohan was one of his colleagues in those days in AIR.

What a lovely poem! Generally, ‘chaandni’ is identified with cool rays of the moon. But here the poet has taken a liberty by imagining fire in ‘chaandni’ , which is destroying his ‘madhuban’ – an unusual use of the metaphor. ‘Madhuban’ in this poem is used in the wider context of a good feeling though its literal meaning is ‘forest of honey.

When a NFS has lovely poetry, masterly rendition and melodious composition, the end result is bound to be excellent.

Audio link :

Song-Shaam ke deepak jale (Rafi NFS)(1960) Singer-Rafi, Lyrics-Madhukar Rajasthani, MD-Vinod Chatterji


shaam ke deepak jale
shaam ke deepak jale
man ka diyaa bujne lagaa aa
chaandni ki aag mein
phir chaandni ki aag mein
madhuban meraa jalne lagaa aa
shaam ke deepak jale

dulhan si saj kar raat aayee
jaam le masti bhara aa aa
baahon mein le lo kahne lagi
pee ke to dekho zaraa
par aansuon se jaam chalkaa
aansuon se jaam chalkaa
daaman ko tar karne lagaa aa
shaam ke deepak jale

aasmaan se chaand ne
itne mein ik aawaaz di
achchee nahin hairaat karni
dil jalon se dillagi ee
dil jalon se dillagi
raat ki ummeed tooti
raat ki ummeed tooti
chaand bhi dhalne lagaa aa
shaam ke deepak jale
man ka diyaa bujhne lagaa aa
shaam ke deepak jale
shaam ke deepak jale
shaam ke deepak jale

8 Responses to "Shaam ke deepak jaley"

Soft rendering by Rafi Saab and Madhukar Rajasthani’s lyrics combine to produce magic!!


Kamath ji,
Sometime back I had given full info on Madhukar Rajasthani,on this
Blog. At the moment,I dont remember the date.
Here is one link,which talks about him-


Thanks for the link.
However, the author is also in the same situation as me in so far as the information on Madhukar Rajasthani is concerned.

I do not remember to have read your information on Madhukar Rajasthani. If I had that link, I would have reproduced in my write-up. In any case, I will search for it now.


Dear Arun,
Are you referring to your comments on the post, the link of which is given below ?


Thanks for posting these non-filmy songs. All these years, I was definitely missing something , not knowing these songs.

In this song, I feel Rafi sahab is consciously trying to sound sweeter like Lata does in her songs. Unlike film songs, here he is singing for himself and expressing himself, through the poets words. This is the reason for the subdued sound, so much softer than what we are used to hearing.

aasmaan se chaand ne
itne mein ik aawaaz di
achchee nahin
‘ aye raat ‘ karni
dil jalon se dillagi ee


Dear Atul-ji,

Many thanks for your seminal work in keeping our heritage alive.

I had a question…

Would you know where I can once again hear ‘Sawan ki rimzim min thirak thirak naache re mayor pankhi re…sund by Mahendra Kapoor in Raag Kalavati…

Also, where do you live? May I please have your contact information?


Parimal Gandhi




The song is sung by Manna Dey. You can listen to this song on YT:


A perfect intezaar song,what a magic has done by instruments players,
very few instruments but I like to listen song again and again.Hats off ….madhukar rajasthani , vinod chetterji,and Rafi saab of course.Chaandni has AAG,I think first time written by Shailendra in AWARA,tere bina aag ye chaandni….tu a…aa…aa.ja.IN dream song.Plz correct me if I m wrong…


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