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

O phoolon ke desh waali…Haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala

Posted on: May 1, 2013

This artice is written by Raja, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie and a regular contributor to this blog.

Today is the birthday of one of our living legends – Manna Dey ji.

It is his 94th birthday – and although 94 is a ripe age, we wish him many more birthdays to come.

It also happens to be the 100th birth anniversary of another legend, Balraj Sahni, today. In fact, this morning when I realized it was the birthday of both these legends, the first songs that came to my mind were “Tu pyaar ka saagar hai” and “Aye meri zohra jabeen”. Both Manna Dey classics picturised on Balraj Sahni.

The rest of the day, in the time that I was free, I have been thinking of only Manna Dey songs. I am fairly active on the social media platform, Twitter, so I have been posting several of his songs there today. I wanted to get him to trend on Twitter – and even requested Harsha Bhogle and Shashi Tharoor (two persons who have a big Twitter following) to help this to happen. They obliged but, as of now, it has not happened. It does not matter – I got a lot of people replying back to me about Manna Dey, how much they love his songs, sending me videos. It made me feel good to see so much love for Manna da.

One of the persons even tweeted back to me “Manna Dey does not need to trend on Twitter, he will always remain in our hearts”. So true!

I suddenly got this urge late in the evening to write a tribute to Manna Dey for Atul’s blog. I should have started earlier but Atul is nice enough to accept this late submission. And Ava has offered to write up the lyrics, since I have a terribly slow connection and it would take ages for me to get the lyrics written down if I tried. Anyway, this is a hurried effort by me – I hope it is not too much of a mess.

Ok, now about Manna Dey ji. As usual, I will not dwell too much on what is already known about him. There is a lot on the internet. He was born as Prabodh Chandra Dey on 1st May 1919 and is the nephew of once-famous Bengali actor-composer K.C Dey. In fact, his uncle played a major role in inspiring Manna Dey early on in his career.

Coming to my own experiences, I have always had a soft corner for Manna Dey’s songs. I know I say this for all singers (and that’s true too) but with Manna Dey, I can listen to his songs anytime. And that’s for almost all his songs. They are so easy on the ears, they are so easy to listen to.

The very first Manna Dey song I actually remember listening to is “Kasme waade pyaar wafa” from Upkaar. I was very young when I saw this movie – it had already become a big hit and the song “Mere desh ki dharti sona ugle” by Mahendra Kapoor was on everybody’s lips. Yet, when I saw the movie, still a young boy, the song that was on my lips for a very long time thereafter, was “Kasme waade pyaar wafa”. At that time I didn’t understand the depth of the song all that much – I just liked the voice and the pathos in the voice.

The next Manna Dey song I remember very well was “Zindagi kaisi hai paheli haay” from Anand. Another song that was on my lips long after I saw the movie. Like I said, Manna Dey songs linger on and on in your mind.

There were a few more that I remember from the late 60s. Like “kaal ka pahiya ghoome bhaiya” from Chanda Aur Bijli. I used to like this song also a lot at that time. Especially the “Ram Krishna Hari” part.

It is difficult to find a bad Manna Dey song. One where he is out of tune, or which is jarring in any way.

Manna Dey is of course known best for songs with a classical bend to them – the likes of Laaga chunri me daag((Dil hi to hai)(1963), Sur na saje kyaa gaaun main(Basant Bahaar), Pooccho na kaise maine rain bitaayi(Meri Soorat Teri Ankhen), Jhanak jhanak tori baaje paayaliya(Mere Huzoor), Gori tori paijaniya(Mehbooba), Ketaki ghulab joohi champakban(Basant Bahaar) and many more. Even when I was very young, I would be told “if you want to listen to classical songs from Hindi movies, you should listen to Manna Dey”.

Unfortunately, especially as the years progressed, there were not always opportunities in Hindi movies to have classical songs. And Manna Dey somehow got tagged with singing songs for the comedy role / secondary role actor (often Mehmood) instead of for the main lead (that would usually be Rafi saab or Mukesh or anybody but Manna Dey). Even then, he never once compromised on his quality – and some of these songs too (like Phool gendwa na maaro(Dooj Ka Chaand)(1964)) have become classics in their own right.

Manna Dey, like some other artistes, did feel aggrieved that he never quite got the respect from the industry that he felt he deserved. I remember, when he finally got an award for “Ae bhai zara dekh ke chalo (Mera Naam Joker)”, he did not mince words, saying “All my life I’ve sung so many classical songs. I never got an award. And now, for THIS song, they give me an award?”. One could feel for him.

Continuing with my personal experiences, I have very fond memories of seeing Manna Dey perform live in a concert when I was about 14 years old. It was a very big deal for me when there was a Shankar Jaikishen night in our small town in Orissa. Jaikishen was dead by then, but Shankar used to conduct concerts still under the S-J banner. Manna Dey was there, Talat Mahmood was there (oh, he was SO good even at that age), Sharada and a few other singers were present. Nitin Mukesh sang his father’s songs. Somebody else sang (rather horribly, I’m sorry to say) Rafi saab songs.

Anyway, Manna Dey was amazing that evening. Like he always is. He started with Tu pyaar ka saagar hai(Seema)(1955) and went on to sing a whole lot of S-J numbers. Like Jhanak jhanak tori baaje paayaliya(Mere Huzoor) and Sur na saje kyaa gaaun main(Basant Bahaar)e. That was the first time in my life I heard Jhoomta mausam mast maheena(Ujaala). He also sang “Dil ka haal sune dilwaala(Shri 420)(1955)” – a song which I fondly remember today as one that I’ve sung umpteen times to my niece when she was 4 years old. She used to love this song.

My other personal experience of Manna Dey ji was at Dubai Airport. I was sitting in the departure lounge waiting for my flight. And there comes Manna Dey ji – and sits next to me. I could not believe it!!! First I wasn’t sure it was him – it looked like him, but I couldn’t ask him (it would be rude). Then he checked his passport – and I peeped (I know I shouldn’t have but I HAD to know!) and saw the name “Prabodh Chandra Dey”. O.K!!! I was too tongue-tied to talk to him. I really should have! Anyway, it was almost time for our flight announcement so it was only a few minutes.

I just thought I’d share a bit of my experiences today on his 94th birthday before going on to the song.

The song for today is “haath mera hai” from Aarop (1973). This is not a very well-known Manna Dey ji song (as far as I know). But I do like it – and I think it really deserves to be better known. So on this occasion, I’m posting this song on this blog. The lyrics have been noted down by Ava – my thanks to her.

I happened to see the movie Aarop just a couple of years ago. My main purpose was to see the song “Nainon me darpan hai”. It was a bonus to listen to this Manna Dey song – since then I’ve listened to it a few times. The music is by another maestro Bhupen Hazarika. And the lyrics are Maya Govind, who used to be well-known for her poetry too, if I’m not mistaken.

The film itself is about an idealistic Vinod Khanna, an equally idealistic Saira Banu – and an equally idealistic Vinod Mehra. It is about journalism and how they want to expose crime through their newspaper. And how the powers-that-be try to destroy them. It is an OK film, could have been better, I think. But the songs are lovely.

Please do listen to this Manna Dey song. Happy Birthday once again, Manna Dey ji.
Part I

Part II

Song-O phoolon ke desh waali…Haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala (Aarop)(1973) Singer- Manna Dey, Lyrics-Maya Govind, MD-Bhupendra Hazarika

Lyrics (provided by Ava):

Part I
o phoolon ke desh waali
ang ang tera phoolon waala
jaise gulaabon ki ho maala
panchhi si chahke faslon si lahke
sarson si phoole champa si mahke
aanchal mein bijli nain mein chapalka
chaal mein hirni ki chanchalta

jee chaahta hai tujhko bithhaakar
patjhad ka dard kahoonga
ab to main chup na rahoonga
tu chir yauwan anant ho
kyun ki tum ritu basant ho
mujhko tumhaara hi hai intezaar
kya tumko maaloom hai ae
patjhad ko kitna hoga
basant ki ritu se pyaar

Part II
haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala
haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala
tera roop bana madhushaala
haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala

boond boond main roz mita hoon
tab chhalki sapnon ki haala
jab poonam ki madira barse ae ae
jab poonam ki madira barse ae
tujhe chandani ne nehlaaye ae,
tab ye gora badan tumhaara
Tajmahal bann jaaye
roop sudha ki ek boond ko
tarse ye tera matvaala
haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala
tera roop bana madhushaala
haath mere hai
madhu ka pyaala

7 Responses to "O phoolon ke desh waali…Haath mere hai madhu ka pyaala"

It was a pleasure to write out this song, and also watch the little drama unfolding between Saira, Vinod and Vinod. 🙂

I can listen to Manna Dey’s songs anytime, any place. I have a number of them on my playlist. His voice is very rich, without being heavy, his sur is always true. Always!

Happy Birthday Manna Da!


If anybody has difficulty in writing lyrics please email me the request with UTube link if possible and I shall email the lyrics directly to him.


Thanks for the great offer. Just a quick question- Is this offer limited to Hindi and Gujarati OR open to Malyalam, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bangali, Manipuri, Sindhi,…. 😆
Don’t worry, even I don’t know these languages, so no question of sending you the YT link. Just relax!


Thanks for the post. I am in Kolkata now. And in Kolkata there were lot of programs on the TV Channels, stage shows and write- ups in the print media on Manna Dey on 1st May. Although Manna Dey lives in Bangalore, Bengalis (including naturalised Bengalis) have not forgotten him. Besides his HF songs, he had sung innumerable Bengali Songs even after his heydays in Hindi Films. His passion and zeal for singing is so intense that, even at this ripe old age and in spite of health problems, he plans to do an album in memory of his departed wife, who shared 60 long years together. That reminds me of his famous song ‘Meri bhi ek Mumtaz thi’. Madhushala is another one of his masterpiece.
Thank a lot


Manna da is truly a very great composer and singer. If Shankar Jaikishan selected him to sing “ketaki gulab juhi champak ban phoole” in film Basant Bahar 1956 to sing opposite Bharat Ratna Bhimsen Joshi almost 60 years ago, that speaks volumes about his abilities and talents


Manna da is perhaps the greatest and the oldest artist. There is a tendency to praise them and upload their songs after they part company with us. Let us from this day start to cover 100% of his songs in all the Hindi films.


wow! beautiful song


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This blog discusses Bollywood songs of yesteryears. Every song has a brief description, followed by a video link, and complete lyrics of the song.

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