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

Mera bhola bhaala raaja muhabbat kya jaane

Posted on: September 26, 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 atulsongaday.me. If this article appears in sites like lyricstrans.com and ibollywoodsongs.com etc then it is piracy of the copyright content of atulsongaday.me and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

SONGS FROM ARTISTE NAME FILMS……Song No. 5
———————————————-
Today’s song is from the film Renuka-47. It is sung by a less known singer Putul Chatterjee, under the baton of composer Sardar Malik ( father of composer Anu Malik-who is for ever “inspired” by foreign music).

Collecting data for this series has been quite a revealing experience for me. I am myself learning many new things and also getting amazed with certain pieces of information about these old generation stars. The case in point is today’s actress RENUKA DEVI. I am not only surprised, but awed and terribly impressed, when I went through her Autobiography ” A woman of substance-Begum Khursheed Mirza”.

Begum Khursheed Mirza is none other than the famous Heroine of the 30s and 40s-Renuka Devi. She was perhaps one of the most educated, upper class, sophisticated and highly cultured Muslim lady, who ever joined the film industry then. One more striking feature of Renuka Devi was that she was one of the very few actresses, who joined films after their marriage. The other such examples I remember offhand is that of Meenakshi Shirodkar (Bramhachari-38 fame), Shobhana Samarth and actress Neena ( real name Shahida-wife of Mohsin Abdulla, brother of Renuka Devi).

Renuka Devi had studied upto Masters degree in English Literature, from Aligarh Muslim University. The only other nearest example I remember offhand is that of actress Vanmala (real name Susheela Devi Pawar), who had done B.A and B.T. and was a Teacher in the college before joining films,at the behest of writer, journalist and Director P.K.Atre.

The story of Renuka Devi is quite interesting. Khursheed jehan was born in Aligarh on 4-3-1918, to Shaikh Abdulla and his wife Waheed jehan Beg. She was the 6th of 7 siblings. Her father Shaikh Abdulla (1874-1965) was originally a Hindu. he was the son of a rich jehagirdar and Landlord from Poonch,Kashmir. They were Kashmiri Brahmins. His name was Thakur Das. He embraced Islam in 1890, while studying in Aligarh. When his family learnt about it he was disowned by them. He took the name Shaikh Abdulla.

He became a leading Advocate of Aligarh. After he married Waheed Jehan Beg, they both- being of progressive thinking- decided to work for the Muslim womens’ education. They faced lot of resistance from the fundamentalists, but they established a Muslim women’s college in Aligarh. To provide students for this college, a school was also started for Muslim girls. Soon girls started joining the school and college. Shaikh Abdulla ensured that all his children were educated. One daughter became a Doctor, another Advocate and two daughters did master’s degrees and later on became Principals of the women’s college. Khursheed also studied upto masters but due to her marriage could not complete it. ( she completed her masters in English Litterateur in 1963, at the age of 45 years, later).

Khursheed jehan was married to Akbar Mirza, a Police Officer in Aligarh. Soon she gave birth to 2 sons.

Her brother Mohsin Abdulla was working in Bombay Talkies at Bombay. He used to describe how professional these studios were. Khursheed was 21 year old and beautiful. She desired to work in films. She wrote a letter to Devika Rani expressing her desire. This she did without informing her husband. She received a letter from Devika Rani,inviting her to Bombay for an interview. Now she confided in her husband and he wholeheartedly supported her.

Thus started her acting career. She was 21 years old, married and had 2 children too. Her first film was “Jeewan Prabhat”-37. She was given the name RENUKA DEVI. This was the Debut film for Kishore Sahu as well. Bombay Talkies bosses were very happy with her performance and she was offered the Heroine’s role opposite Jairaj in the film ” Bhabhi”-1939. Jairaj was also from a rich background, cultured and highly educated. Their tuning was excellent and the film was a grand success. Renuka also sang a few songs in Bhabhi-39. ( when the news of her acting in films reached Aligarh,there was a hue and cry. Her mother wrote to Renuka,’not to visit Aligarh for now’. Renuka did not go to Aligarh for the next 2 years).

She was invited to Calcutta By New Theatres to act in the film, Dadi Didi-39. Her other films were Naya Sansar-41 (Ashok Kumar), Sahara-43 (S D Narang), Ghulami-45 ( Masood Parvez) and Samrat Chandragupta-45 ( Ishwarlal ). Her film career was very short. She announced her retirement from films in February 1944, while shooting for her last films.

After partition, her family migrated to Pakistan. In Pakistan, though in demand, she refused to do any films. Instead, she decided to devote her time for women’s uplift, education, welfare and social work. She also did some work on Pakistan Radio.

When TV came to Pakistan, she became very active and she was a popular figure on Pak TV for next 15-20 years. She completed her master’s degree in 1963, at the age of 45 years. She published 9 instalments of her autobiography in the popular magazine ” Herald ” from August 1982 to April 1983, under the title ” The uprooted sapling”. This was,later on edited and published by her daughter Lubna as a Book on 2004, titled- ” A woman of substance- the memoirs of Begum Khursheed Mirza “.

Renuka devi died on 8-2-1989 at Lahore after a prolonged illness.

In her book she included a chapter of 24 pages ” Renuka Devi-my celluloid identity”, in which she has described many interesting anecdotes. Her detailed description of the times of the 30s and 40s is a lovely chronicle of the history of Bombay film industry. Here are some excerpts from her book…

1) Back in the Thirties, acting in films was not considered an honourable profession for anybody. And for a married woman from a well-educated and respectable upper-middle class Muslim family, it was forbidden to even think about it. But Khurshid Mirza, the daughter of the founders of the Aligarh Women’s College, the wife of a police officer and already a mother of two, was too free-spirited to be tied down by any social norm. I took the plunge and soon a star named Renuka Devi was born.

2) In 1939, Shanta Apte wrote that she received four or five letters each day from young girls wanting to join the movies “due perhaps to this monetary attraction”. Actresses themselves acknowledged in interviews that the money was substantial and more than one actress claimed that her salary rivalled that of the Governor of Bombay! But aside from several myth-building exercises, it is now apparent that film acting was a uniquely high-paying profession for women. According to Filmindia, Shobhana Samarth’s approximate total income in 1942 was Rs 36,000 while Sardar Akhtar, Naseem Banu, and Madhuri earned about Rs 30,000 each. These figures indicate that leading heroines of the day averaged an income of Rs 3,000-4,000 per month (some actresses were freelancers and did not work through the year) at a time when a French chiffon sari cost Rs 9, and a brand new imported Studebaker cost Rs 6,000. It is hardly surprising then, that I would want to make “a little dough”.

3) Akbar stood by me in the face of stiff opposition from both our families. Nevertheless, he maintained a strange attitude towards my work. He enjoyed the benefits the money brought us, such as a new car, expensive game-hunts, and pleasure trips to fashionable Mussoorie in summer and excellent schooling for our children. And, yet, he treated my work as a hobby, instead of giving it its due importance.

( My thanks to the book,”A woman of substance “, some information from ” Free Library”,Cineplot and my own notes).

Let us now listen to a song from film Renuka-47, sung by Putul Chatterjee….


Song-Mera bhola bhaala raaja muhabbat kya jaane (Renuka)(1947) Singer-Putul Chatterji, Lyrics-Qamar Jalalabadi, MD-Sardar Malik

Lyrics

ho o o
aa haa haa ha haa
mera bhola
mera bhola bhaala raaja
muhabbat kyaa jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane
mera bhola bhaala raaja
muhabbat kyaa jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane
wo to mujhse thhar thhar kaanpe
wo to mujhse thhar thhar kaanpe
sharaarat kyaa jaane
haan
sharaarat kyaa jaane

kehne ko ghar ka raaja hai
kehne ko ghar ka raaja hai
per kitna seedha saadha hai
kare jhhuk jhhuk kar parnaam
kare jhhuk jhhuk kar parnaam
kare jhhuk jhhuk kar parnaam
hukoomat kyaa jaane
haan
hukoomat kyaa jaane
mera bhola bhaala raaja
muhabbat kyaa jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane

main chhedoon
main chhedoon usey
wo ghabraaye
main chhedoon usey
wo ghabraaye
haan ghabraaye
main badhoon
main badhoon
wo peechhe hat jaaye
main badhoon
wo peechhe hat jaaye
dil dhhak dhhak
dil dhhak dhhak
dil dhhak dhhak
dil dhhak dhhak
dil dhhak dhhak dhhak dhhak kare
dil dhhak dhhak kare
dil ki haalat kya jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane
mera bhola bhaala raaja
muhabbat kyaa jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane

3 Responses to "Mera bhola bhaala raaja muhabbat kya jaane"

Arun ji,

Wonderful write up. Your articles are a wealth of information, hertofore unknown and not easily available. What a coincidence that I have the CD of songs of this film currently sitting in my car, and I have been listening to them for the past four five days. 🙂 This is one of the songs that my mind fancies to be a cute little song.

Arun ji, Atul ji,

Couple of corrections to the lyrics.

The lines
kare jhhuk jhhuk kar parnaam
muhabbat kyaa jaane
haan
muhabbat kyaa jaane

should read
kare jhhuk jhhuk kar parnaam
hukumat kyaa jaane
haan
hukumat kyaa jaane

The lines
main chhedoon
?? khhal jaaye
main chhedoon
?? khhal jaaye
haan khhal jaaye

should read
main chhedoon usey
wo ghabraaye
main chhedoon usey
wo ghabraaye
haan ghabraaye

Rgds
Sudhir

Like

Sudhir ji,

Thanks for your nice words.
Thanks also for Lyric corrections.
-AD

Like

Putul Chaterjee sang in Mahasati Tulsi Vrinda-1947, Mitti-1947 and Devdasi-1945

Like

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