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

Mast pawan shaakhen lahraayen

Posted on: January 24, 2018

This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, 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.

Blog Day : 3477 Post No. : 13968

The year 1940 can be regarded as a benchmark year for Hindi film industry to assess its progress in the talkie era as it marked about a decade since talkies came into being. Although studio systems (in which artists were on the payrolls of the studios) continued, slowly the star system was evolving in which the star actor commanded the salary acccording to his success rate in box office collections. During this period, actors with star values emerged. They commanded good salary from their respective studios to ward off poaching by the competing film production companies. Films with K L Saigal, Prithviraj Kapoor, Chandramohan, Surendra, Motilal, Ashok Kumar, Durga Khote, Madhuri, Sabita Devi, Kanan Devi, Shobhana Samarth, Leela Chitnis, Naseem Bano etc were expected to be box office hits.

If one goes by the estimates done by ‘Filmindia’ magazine of prominent stars’ salaries in the early 40s, most of these stars were getting a monthly salary ranging from Rs.3000-5000/- from their respective studios. (If we relate it to the cost of indexing to 2013, the amount is equivalent to about Rs.48000-80000/- per month). With the World War-II, the cost of production of films had shot up. There was an acute shortage of raw films. Many film production companies had reported to have bought raw films in the black market.

On the one hand, the cost of film production went up, with less purchasing power at the hands of cinegoers due to World War-II, perhaps they became choosy in watching films. Those days, publicity of films was mostly by words of mouth of the cinegoers. As a result, many Hindi films with star actors failed at the box office. For example, a few films listed below with star value released in 1940 failed at the box office:

1 .Bharosa (1940) – Chandramohan, Sardar Akhtar, Mazhar Khan

2. Deepak (1940) – Prithviraj Kapoor

3. Geeta (1940) – Chandramohan, Durga Khote

4. Main Haari (1940) – Naseem Bano

5. Sajni (1940) – Prithviraj Kapoor, Sabita Devi

‘Haar Jeet’ (1940) produced under the banner of New Theatres was one such film which failed at the box office in spite of having star value and a reputed banner. The film was directed by Amar Mullick. The star cast included Kanan Devi, Pahadi Sanyal, Nawab, Nemo, Nand Kishore, Meera Dutta, Pannalal etc. The film was based on a Bengali short story ‘Shubhojog’ written by Upendranath Ganguli.

The story of the film was as under:

It is the story of two theatrical companies competing with each other. Kamala (Kanan Devi) is the star actress of the Ruby Theatre. Narendra (Pahadi Sanyal) is the star actor of the Bina Theatre. Narendra leaves Bina Theatre and joins Ruby Theatre. Here he falls in love with Kamala. They get married in a rural setting among the peasantsand stay in the rural area. In keeping with the rural setting, Narendra forbids Kamala from acting in the theatres. However, she does not heed his advice and continues to acts in the plays of the Ruby Theatre. They are separated.

After staying among the peasants for some time, Narendra also re-joins Bina Theatre. While the Bina Theatre achieves success, Ruby Theatre goes bankrupt. This is regarded as the punishment for Kamala who has refused to be a dutiful housewife. At the end, Kamala and Narendra are united.[Based on the review of the film in ‘Filmindia’ magazine, November 1940 issue with some additional inputs from ‘Encyclopaedia of Indian Cinemas’].

The ‘Filmindia’ review has blamed inept direction and a weak story line for the failure of the film. I feel that the film’s ending is a reflection on the male dominated society of rural India in the early 20th century which one would often find in Hindi films of 1930s and 1940s.

‘Haar Jeet’ (1940) had 9 songs written by Arzoo Lucknowi and Kidar Sharma. However, individual accreditation to the song is not available. It may be noted that Kidar Sharma had left New Theatres in 1937 after the completion of the shooting of ‘Vidyapati’ (1937). So, I guess, his contribution as a lyricist, if any, may be only marginal and most of songs may have been written by Arzoo Lucknowi. Songs were set to music by R C Boral.

I am presenting the first song ‘mast pawan shaakhen lahraaye’ from the film ‘Haar Jeet’ (1940) which marks the debut for the film in the Blog. The song is sung by Kanan Devi and Pahari Sanyal. The main feature of the song is that it has a long musical prelude of 1:34 and thereafter there are no musical interludes. I guess, this song may have been the earliest one to have the longest duration of the musical prelude in any Hindi film song of that time. Perhaps this record was broken by this song which had a musical prelude of 1:50.

Song-Mast pawan shaankhen lahraayen (Haar Jeet)(1940) Singers-Kanan Devi, Pahadi Sanyal, MD-R C Boral


mast pawan shaakhen lahraayen
ban ban mor papeehe gaayen
ae ae mast pawan shaakhen lahraayen
ban ban mor papeehe gaayen
ae ae mast pawan shaakhen lahrayen
phool phool par bhanwre jaayen
jaa kar
preet ke
geet sunaayen
phool phool par bhanwre jaayen
jaa kar preet ke geet sunaayen
jo hriday mein geet hai vyaakul
tu bhi usey sunaa sunaa
jo hriday mein geet hai vyaakul
tu bhi usey sunaa sunaa
gaa sajanwaa gaa
gaa sajanwaa gaa

mast pawan shaakhen lahraayen
ban ban mor papeehe gaayen
ae ae mast pawan shaakhen


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