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

Raaton ko chori chori sapnon mein aana chhodo

Posted on: August 29, 2014

This article is written by Arunkumar Deshmukh, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a contributor to this blog. This article is meant to be posted in If this article appears in sites like and etc then it is piracy of the copyright content of and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Film industry is one industry where men and women have to work together. Whether it is Actor-director or Singer-Composer, for the sake of work they have to spend much time together. No wonder then that Cupid does his work overtime. Sometimes there are mutual attraction and at times there are one sided fires burning. In most cases the one sided fire is extinguished in a very painful way, like what P L Santoshi faced with actress Rehana or the slap Sanjiv Kumar got from actress Nutan.

There were cases when love of Dilip kumar for Madhubala, died in the High court witness Box, when he gave evidence against her father in the ‘ Naya Daur ‘ legal case. Dev Anand’s love with Suraiyya ended happily for Dev Anand with him marrying Kalpana Kartik, but Suraiyya stayed “Unmarried”, in his ” yaad”, throughout her life. Here the villain was her so called ” Grand mother “, who actually was her own mother, as documented in the book “Stars from another sky” by Saadat Hasan Manto !

The successful 2-way traffic usually ended with a marriage. We can see marriages between producers and Actresses( Himanshu Rai-Devika rani and W M Khan and actress Nina), directors and singers/actresses ( Nalini jaywant-Virendra Desai, Shaukat Hussain-Noorjehan, Geeta Dutt-Guru Dutt, Lalita Pawar-G.P.Pawar, Rattanbai-Hafiz Khan), Actors and Actresses ( Arun Ahuja-Nirmala devi, Snehprabha Pradhan-Kishore Sahu, Dev Anand-Kalpana Kartik, Dharmendra- Hema Malini, Rajesh Khanna-Dimple Kapadiya, Amitabh Bachchan-Jaya, Abhishek-Aishwarya, Kishore Kumar-Madhubala, Premnath-Bina Rai, Karan Dewan-Manju Desai, Marutirao Pehlwan-Alaknanda).

There were some odd combinations like Satyendranath Athiah-Bhanu Athaiya (Lyricist-Costume designer),Lyricist-Singer (Amar Verma-Manik Verma), Singer-villain (Shakti Kapoor- Shivangi Kolhapure),Music teacher-student ( Roshan-Ira Moitra, Hemant Kumar-Bela Mukherjee, C.Ramchandra-‘Ben’ Ratan Thakur), and even a singer-Orchestra player (Vinta Amladi-Krishna Chakravarty) and lastly between singer-singers ( Jyoti-G M Durani, Gauhar Karnataki- Bal Gandharva). There were those pairs who were singers-actors ( Amirbai- Himalayawala,Rafiq Gazanavi- Anwari bai).

The interesting group, however,was that of Composer-Singers ( Sudhir Phadke-Lalita Deulkar, Asha Bhosle-R D Burman, Naashad-Premlata, Anil Biswas-Meena Kapoor, Pannalal Ghosh-Parul Ghosh, Khayyam-Jagjit Kaur, Ghulam Haider-Umrao Zia begum, Kamal Dasgupta-Firoza begum, Ninu Majumdar-Kaumudi Munshi).

Today’s song is selected as a tribute to the love between Composer and Singer pair-that of Composer Ninu Mujumdar nad singer Kaumudi Munshi, from the film Bhai Saaheb-1954. The Music Direction was by Ninu Mujumdar and the singers were Kaumudi Munshi with C.H.Atma and chorus.

Ninu (Niranjan) Mujumdar was born on 9-9-1915 in a Gujarati Nagar Brahmin family of Baroda (Vadodara). Ninu was a pet name that he became famous by. His real name was Niranjan, which he later used as a pen name in his Gazals. His father, Nagendra Mazumdar made silent films.

After the early influence of Faiyaz Khan, Mazumdar’s search took him to various routes and he studied different kinds of music before he came into his own to become one of the first Gujarati Sugam Sangeet (light music) singer. He soon graduated to composing his own music and writing songs. Apart from classical music, the earlier influence was also of Ravindra Sangeet. This was at the time when Bengali language enjoyed prestige among Gujaratis of a kind that was comparable to the status of French among the English speaking nations. He grew out of it in a few years.

The more lasting influence on his music was that of folk songs and semi-classical music of Uttar Pradesh (U.P.) like the Hori, Chaiti, Barkha Biraha as well asThumri and Dadra. He learned these during his stint in U.P. where he did farming for some years and also kept in touch through association with people like Satyendra Trivedi, a connoisseur of music and the “Thumri Queen”, Siddheshwari Devi, a family friend and his wife Kaumudi’s Guru.

Ninu’s ambition, even when he started his schooling in music at Baroda, was to become a music director in films. From 1937 onwards he participated in light Gujarati musical programmes. He also produced several features for All India Radio. From 1954, Mazumdar worked with all India Radio in Mumbai for over 20 years as Light Music Producer. He would have liked to take part in Hindi programmes too but the shortage of Gujarati artists forced him to concentrate on programmes in that language.

When in charge of music for the newly launched Vividh Bharati, that had to compete with Radio Ceylon without using any film music (film music was not played on AIR for several years due to conflicts over contracts and royalties), he successfully produced programmes inviting Salil Chaudhary, Kanu Ghosh and others from Bombay Youth Choir or IPTA and using voices of Manna Dey and other well known artists. Later when the issue of royalties was settled between the film producers and AIR, Mazumdar was the first to produce the popular Jaymala Programme by interviewing eminent persons from the film industry.

A career in films was also cut out for Ninu Mazumdar, as his father, Nagendra Mazumdar, was a dramatist and film producer. Nagendra was not much of a musician but he imparted his son training in music from the very early days.

Ninu found the field restricted, in a way in films, because of the need of working at a very fast pace and with view to pleasing the majority among the public. Ninu tried to introduce a new trend in film music, that of, adding a classical touch by borrowing from the old masters like Surdas. These attempts met with considerable success in Gopinath, a picture in which Ninu had interest as a producer as well.

It was in films made in the forties that a young Ninu Mazumdar’s voice could be heard. He sang with Sardar Akhtar in “Uljhan”, with Amirbai Karnataki in “Paristan” and Meena Kapoor in “Gopinath”.

He provided music for Jail Yatra and Gopinath, two of the earliest Raj Kapoor films. It is well documented by now that the Yashomati Maiyase Poochhe Nandlala song in RK movie Satyam Shivam Sundaram is a direct lift from Mazumdar’s Aai Gori Radhika in Gopinath.

He also composed music for several Gujarati Films like “Jeevano Jugari”, “Okha Haran”, “Sharad Poonam” etc.

He sang and penned quite a few of his songs. Amongst others who sang for him were Meena Kapoor, Shamshad Begum, Geeta Dutt, Suraiya, Hameedabanu, Pradeepji, C.H.Atma, Ameerbai Karnataki, Raj Kapoor, Shankar Dasgupta, S.D.Batish, Lakshmi Shankar, Talat Mehmood, Siddheshwari Devi, Rajkumar, Nalini Mulgaonkar, Dilip Dholakia, Ajeet Merchant, Shobha Gurtu, Sarla Bhide, Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosale, Manna Dey, Kishori Amonkar, Usha Mangeshkar, Leela Mehta, Premlata Naik, Kishori Ghia, Suman Kalyanpur, Kaumudi Munshi,etc.

Vetern composer Ninu Mazumdar passed away on March 3 2000. Some of his songs have become so popular that people often do not even remember who wrote or composed them.

He gave music to 18 Hindi films – Black cat-1942,Amanat, Masterjee, School Master, Kiran, Paristan, Rangila Dost, Main kya karun, Gudiya, Jail yatra, Gopinath, Kuch naya, Aflatoon, Ajmayash, Raj ratan, Ram Shastri, Teen Tasweeren and Bhai Saheb-54.

His son Uday gave music to TV serial ” Buniyaad ” in the 80s.

Kaumudi Munshi did not sing much in Hindi films. She was into classical and singing on Radio. Kaumudi was born in Varanasi (Banaras) in 1929 but her forefathers shifted to Banaras six to seven generations before her birth.

Though originally from Vadnagar, Gujarat, because these families resided in a Hindi speaking place (Kashi / Banaras), they got habituated in using Hindi for their day to day affair.

Akshay Desai (son of Shri R.V.Desai) encouraged her and helped her to pursue a career in singing. It was difficult for Kaumudi to start singing in Gujarati as all her life she was speaking Hindi. Akshay Desai taught her some Gujarati Songs. Kaumudi gave audition at All India Radio and got selected. This gave the direction to her career and became the key milestone in her impressive journey towards a successful career in singing. In 1951, she started singing in public. While in Bombay, she got introduced to composers like Avinash Vyas, Ninu Mazumdar, Dilip Dholakia, Ajit Merchant etc.

Ninu Mazumdar was a family friend. After coming to Mumbai, the link got explored naturally. Ninu was the Music Director associated with All India Radio where Kaumudi dedicated her initial career. Kaumudi started singing Ninu’s songs in chorus. Ninu was impressed with her performance and attitude towards singing. Slowly, Kaumudi started singing Ninu’s songs in Solo. This relationship ultimately culminated into a relationship for life. Kaumudi wed Ninu Mazumdar in 1954. Their families were against the marriage but both remained firm on their decision to be together. Their marriage was a perfect example of the rare blend of literature and music.

Kaumudi spent 5 years learning Gazals from famous musician Taj Ahmed Khan. Kaumudi has her distinctive and appealing style of presenting Gazals and perhaps it is due to this fact.

After marriage also, Ninu was engaged in helping build Kaumudi’s career in singing. He actually wrote some songs specially for her, composed them, got her to sing those and helped her with getting a music album made. Kaumudi has crossed 50 years in her singing career.

Kaumudi is known as the “Nightingale of Gujarat” by her critics and fans both alike. Though she has learnt Indian Classical Music, she is keenly interested in and fascinated by Thumri, Dadra, Chaiti, Kajari, Gazals and Bhojpuri Folk Songs. She believes that lyrics made for these style of singing have emotions of people and experience of the lyricists. The performer gets engrossed into the song and becomes the poet for those moments. And because of this engagement, the performance touches the heart of the audience and the performer is appreciated. This is the reason why people find more emotions and flow in Kaumudi’s work than pure singing skills.

She believes that Music is goddess Saraswati herself and therefore, each time she sings, she assumes it as a sacred art of worship. During her career, Kaumudi was a preferred artist for H.M.V. Her fist album was a HMV LP in 1952 on Garba. She also performed on All India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan. “Choryasi Rango No Saathiyo”, a song composed by Ninu Mazumdar is now forever bonded with Kaumudi Munshi in the minds of the Gujarati community.

The film Bhai saaheb had 10 songs,of which 8 were featuring C.H.Atma-4 solos and 4 duets. Two songs were sung by lata mangeshkar. Ninu Mujumdar always wanted to compose songs for Lata Mangeshkar, but he could never do so,in his earlier 17 Hindi films. In this 18th and his last hindi film,he achieved his desire.

Let us now enjoy a really melodious duet with chorus from the film Bhai Saaheb-1954….

Notes- The pairs of artistes in marriages are only indicative and not exhaustive. I am thankful to for the Bios,which are edited by me.

PS-HFGK mentions this song as a song in two parts, though only one part seems to be available.

Song-Raaton ko chori chori sapnon mein aana chhodo (Bhai Sahab)(1954) Singer-Kaumudi Munshi, C H Atma, Lyrics-Shailendra, MD-Ninu Majumdar
Kaumudi Munshi + Chorus


Raaton ko chori chori
sapnon mein aana chhodo
raaton ko chori chori
sapnon mein aana chhodo
chup chup ke rehna hai to
dil mein muskuraana chhodo
raaton ko chori chori

jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupaana
isi mein hai lagi ka mazaa aa
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki saza
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki saza
jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupaana
Isi mein hai lagi ka mazaa aa
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki saza
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki saza

aa aa aa
aa aa aa
aa aa aa
aa aa aa
aa aa aa
unko tadpaane mein aata hai mazaa

jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupana

dil lagaane ki mili hai yeh sazaa
jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupaana

jaante hain
phir bhi wo anjaan hain aen
jaante hain
phir bhi wo anjaan hain

jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupaana

ek dil mein saikadon toofaan hain aen
ek dil mein saikadon toofaan hain

jhalki dikhaana
chhupna chhupaana
Isi mein hai lagi ka mazaa aa
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki sazaa
hai badi pyaari ye pyaar ki sazaa
raaton ko chori chori
sapnon mein aana chhodo
raaton ko chori chori
sapnon mein aana chhodo
chup chup ke rehna hai to
dil mein muskurana chhodo
raaton ko chori chori


9 Responses to "Raaton ko chori chori sapnon mein aana chhodo"

This is an excellent song. Heard it for the first time. The bio-profile is very detailed. Thanks a lot.


Thanks for all the detailed information on Ninu Mazumdar and Kaumudi Munshi. A great song too – hearing it for the first time.

Listening to this wonderful song for the first time. Kaumudi Munshi’s voice is very pleasing. Thanks for the song and the detail write-up on Ninu Mazumdar and Kaumudi Munshi.

So awestruck are your readers, dear Arunji, with your knowledge that even to point out a simple slip of your pen, people are afraid, lest they be wrong! Sanjeev Kumar was slapped by Hema Malini not Nutan. Then in the list of unsuccessful romances, Raj Kapoor – Nargis was not listed. But then as you said, the list was not exhaustive. Many lesser known pairs could be expanded, like the Ninu bhai – Kaumudi’s was done — ah! so beautifully — in this write-up.

Gupta ji,

I am sorry,but this time you are WRONG.

In her autobiography in Marathi ” Asen mi nasen mi” Nutan has described this incident.
Since it is in Marathi,I am giving you a link to an English news Item,which describes this incident ‘ Nutan slaps Sanjeev kumar’.

If Hema malini has also slapped sanjeev kumar,it must be an additional one !


Its Black Out-1942.
Another movie Pul-1947 he composed and sang 3 songs and also composed in Poonam Ka Chand-1967
Another song he sang o jaane wale tune jeena jaana in Chooriyan-1942 In Masterji he combined forces with BR Deodhar
For Paristan he also wrote lyrics with Roopdas.
In Main Kya Karu he sang a song with Hamida Banu.
In Jail Yatra he sang with Meena Kapoor.
I think Raj Kapoor also sang one song in Jail Yatra.
In Gopinath a duet of Raj Kapoor and Shamshad Begum was composed by NM.
Aazmayish was composed by one J D Majumdar
Teen Tasweeren was a household affair; all songs sung him and KM
In Bhai Saheb CH Atma figured in all songs except one by Lata
Rafi sang sar ko hatheli pe liye in Raj Ratan
Sudha Malhotra sang aa jaao in Poonam Ka Chand-1967
Janardan Tanjavarkar sang aisa hamara desh in Kuchh Naya
KM sang a marathon song in Raja Aur Rank and Mathura Shyam chale in Shola Aur Shabnam
As she was from Banaras are pronunciations are impeccable. You must hear her in Samaranjalika Vol1 and II.

You are very much right in mentioning, “This was at the time when Bengali language enjoyed prestige among Gujaratis”. I remember my father and his friends talking in Bengali in our town ‘Bansda’ in south Gujarat. Ravindranath’s ‘Geetanjali’ (original and translation) were found almost in all the house.

These days serials based on Gujarati characters enjoy prestige among TV soap opera watchers. 🙂

I had also undergone beginners’ course in Bangla(not bengali). I can read and understand bit and can sing few Bangla songs as the tunes were used by the same MDs like Hemantda and Salilda in Kohra ( o nodi re>>o beqaraar dil and Parakh o sajna etc.

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