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

Main To Aagre Se Joota Laaya Re Ho Rani Ji

Posted on: October 18, 2018


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.

Blog Day : 3744 Post No. : 14701

Today’s song is from a comparatively less known film, ‘Prem Sangeet’ (1943). It was produced and directed by WZ Ahmed, under his own banner, Shalimar Pictures, Poona. The music was by its resident MD SK Pal aka Suryakant Pal (nephew of MD Ramchandra Pal, who was with Bombay Talkies). The lyricist was Bharat Vyas. The cast of the film was Neena, Jairaj, H Prakash, Shanta Thakkar, Rajkumari Shukla, Tiwari, Anwar, Gulab, Randhir and many more. The song is sung by Bharat Vyas and Shanta Thakkar.

Bharat Vyas (18-12-1918 to 4-7-1982) wrote 1247 songs in 189 films. In addition, he acted in 3 films, ‘Ghulami’ (1945), ‘Prithviraj Sanyogita’ (1946) and ‘Maa’ (1952). He directed a film also – ‘Rangila Rajasthan’ (1949). He sang 8 songs in 6 films – ‘Prem sangeet’ (1943), ‘Mann Ki Jeet’ (1944), ‘Ghulami’ (1945), ‘Chandralekha’ (1948), ‘Navrang’ (1959) and ‘Santaan’ (1980). He was one of the MDs for film ‘Rangila Rajasthan’ and had composed 3 songs. Shanta Thakkar, who sang with him was also not a regular singer. She had sung just one song in ‘Nirdosh’ (1941), and after today’s song, she sang one more song in ‘Mann Ki Jeet’ (1944) – only 3 songs in career.

There are many books on Hindi film related subjects in almost all languages. Most books give factual or biographical information. There was one author – Saadat Hasan Manto – whose books combined facts, myths, opinions, humour and lascivious stories about the film people he came in contact with, while he was in India before partition. I have some of his books like Meena Bazaar, Stars from Another Sky, and Dastavej Vol 5. One gets to know about the conditions prevailing in the film world in those times, through the eyes of one amongst them. Manto was close to many heroes like Shyam, Ashok kumar and others like Nazir Ahmed, Rafiq Ghaznavi etc. In one of his books, he has revealed the inside story how a shy housewife – Shahida – became a popular film heroine Neena and what magic her mentor (husband later on) WZ Ahmed played to convert her.

About two years back Sadanand Kamath ji had also written about her in one of his articles on song from film ‘Ek Raat’ (1942). I have used some part of his story along with additional information gathered from the All India Film Directory and Who’s Who – 1946, some Pakistani sites and my notes to make her story a wider one.

Neena (real name Shahida) was born on 18th July 1919 in Aligarh in a cultured Muslim family. She was the eldest of six siblings. Her father was  Prime Minister of a small state. Later he was appointed as a  magistrate in Lucknow. Subsequently, he became a member of Federal Public commission. She studied in Aligarh and completed her graduation. During her college days, Moshin Abdullah fell in love with her. They got married and she settled for her domestic duty. Her husband got a job in Bombay Talkies laboratory where Shashdhar Mukherjee was his colleague. Shahida accompanied her husband and stayed in Malad.

When WZ Ahmed set up his film production company, Shalimar Pictures, Moshin Abdullah joined him in the same capacity which he was holding in Bombay Talkies and shifted to Poona (Pune) with his wife Shahida. Probably it was during this period that WZ Ahmed came to know about Shahida and offered her the lead role in his first film ‘Ek Raat’ (1942). Even though her husband was connected with Hindi films and her sister-in-law (husband’s sister), Renuka Devi (Begum Mirza) was an established actress in Bombay Talkies, Shahida was not interested in pursuing a career in films. It was her husband who persuaded her to take the lead role in ‘Ek Raat’ (1942) offered by WZ Ahmed. Saadat Hasan Manto, in his book ‘Stars From Another Sky’ has pointed out that for Moshin Abdullah, Shahida taking up the role in the film was a necessity as he was always short of money due to his gambling habit.

Before the film went on floor, a massive publicity of the film with Shahida getting her screen name ‘Neena’ as a mystery woman was launched, with giant billboards on the roads of Karachi – without showing her face. This created a suspense and she started getting fan mail too, before her film was released. The film was first released in Karachi on 18th July 1942 where it ran for 9 weeks. With the positive feedback from the cine goers, the film was next released in Hyderabad (Deccan) followed by an all-India release. The film was a box office success.

WZ Ahmed announced his next film ‘Mann Ki Jeet’ (1944) with Neena and Shyam in the lead roles. However, in the meantime, he released a quickie , his second film ‘Prem Sangeet’ (1943) with Neena and Jairaj in lead roles without much publicity as there was no more mystery about Neena. His concentration was now on ‘Mnan Ki Jeet’ (1944). She was quite good looking. In 1945, she was voted “The best dressed beauty of the Indian film world” award from I.F.J.A. She worked in only 5 films, ‘Ek Raat’ (1942), ‘Prem Sangeet’ (1943), ‘Mann Ki Jeet’ (1944), ‘Prithviraj Sanyogita’ (1946) and ‘Meerabai’ (1947). One more ambitious film was planned and announced – ‘Shri Krishna Bhagwan’, in which she was to play Radha. However due to partition and their migration to Pakistan, this was cancelled.

WZ Ahmed in his capacity as a producer-director was virtually in full control of Neena. Her husband Moshin Abdullah being removed from Shalimar Pictures for not doing his allotted work, had lost his grip over his wife. On the other hand, Neena found wide differences in attitudes towards her of WZ Ahmed who was courteous and her husband who was not only swindling her money in gambling but he was also a womaniser. Slowly, she became close to WZ Ahmed. In 1946, Neena divorced her husband and married WZ Ahmed.

After the partition, both WZ Ahmed and Neena migrated to Pakistan lock stock barrel, leaving the staff of Shalimar Pictures in a lurch as many of the staff had not received their salary for months. In August 1948, Bombay High Court adjudged WZ Ahmed, the sole proprietor of Shalimar Pictures as insolvent. Thus the saga of a ‘mystery woman’ of Hindi films ended in mysterious circumstances.

Although, Ahmed was declared as insolvent, the workers of Shalimar made an attempt to revive the Shalimar Pictures company. They pooled their resources and Bharat Vyas produced a movie, ‘Rangeela Rajasthan’ in 1949, under the banner of Shalimar Pictures. Many ex employees like Bharat Vyas , SK Pal and Shyama Dulari etc. worked for free. However this last attempt was also not enough to save the company and it was sold out, to pay the dues of suppliers etc.

In Pakistan, Neena worked for her husband’s 2 films – ‘Roohi’ (1954) and ‘Vaada’ (1957). The third film remained unfinished, and she retired to remain a housewife – a second time. She died sometime in April 1990, in Karachi.

Waheeduddin Ziauddin Ahmed, the smart brain behind showing tempting dreams to a housewife and making her an actress in 5 films, died in a hospital in Lahore, after a prolonged illness, on 15-4-2007. It was/is believed by some even now that Neena sang her own songs initially. However, during one of his visits to India , Ahmed made it very clear that ALL songs including those attributed to Neena were sung by Sitara Kanpuri only. This is recorded in Listener’s Bulletin no. 134 of July 2007. So, there should be no doubt whatsoever about this. After his death in Lahore, the leading Newspaper of Pakistan, ‘The Dawn’ wrote a short obituary on him, on 17th April 2007. It throws light on his work. Here it is..

W.Z. Ahmed, 91, one of the most outstanding film directors of the subcontinent, passed away at a local hospital late on Sunday night (15-4-2007). He was suffering from an infection of the lung. He was laid to rest at the Bagh-i-Rehmat graveyard on Monday afternoon.

After coming up with a series of films in only five years, Wahiduddin Ziauddin Ahmed, was not as prolific as some of his successors in the film industry. He directed-produced five films before the partition of the sub-continent: ‘Aik Raat’, ‘Mann Ki Jeet’, ‘Prem Sangeet’, ‘Prithaviraj- Samyukta’ and ‘Mira Bai’ — all released between 1942 and 1947.

After partition, he made just two films ‘Roohi’ and ‘Wada’, while a third one, ‘Wafa Ki Ada’, remained incomplete. The country’s environment was obviously not suited to his brand of cinema and his creation as one of his masterpieces, ‘Roohi’, has the distinction of being the first-ever film to be banned in Pakistan. The government said the film generated ‘class hatred’, and if that was not bad enough, portrayed a ‘rich married woman having an affair with a young, unmarried man’.

The ban was later revoked and ‘Roohi’ was released in 1954. The same year W.Z. Ahmed was at the forefront of the campaign against the screening of Indian films. The protest was known as ‘Jaal agitation’ after a Dev Anand-starrer of the same name that had been imported out of East Pakistan’s quota — a limited number of Indian films were allowed into Pakistan until then — and then brought over to West Pakistan. The protest led to the arrest of Mr Ahmed and many others in Lahore.

Mr Ahmed owned the Shalimar Pictures in Pune and another studio in Madras before 1947. Some very famous writers and lyricists worked for Shalimar, including Josh Malihabadi, Krisan Chander, Ramanand Sagar, Akhtar-ul-Iman and Sagar Nizami. He established the W.Z. Studio at Wahdat Road in Lahore after some years after partition. He spent many years of his life pursuing the ideal of a filmmakers’ cooperative.

Sanaullah Khan Gandapur, who worked as an assistant to W.Z. Ahmed, remembers his guru as an excellent story-writer and a director with a vision and skill to mould actors according to his requirement. “He was a man of diversified interests and immense knowledge,” Mr Gandapur says.

Mr Ahmed was born in Gujarat, India, in 1916 where his father was a senior police officer. He is said to have been moved into entering filmdom by K.L. Sehgal’s Dev Das. It is said Mr Ahmed went to watch Dev Das and was so disappointed with the production that he decided to direct films himself.

He married twice. His first wife was a daughter of Sir Ghulam Husain Hidayatullah. Later on, he married Shahida, who acted in films under the adopted name of Neena. She died a few years ago (April 1990). Mr Ahmed had a son, Fariduddin Ahmed, and a daughter, Afia Rabbani.

Fariduddin Ahmed, well known as Farid Ahmed, was a talented filmmaker who married television and stage actor and producer, Samina Ahmed. Farid died in 1993.

Today’s song is a duet and is a parody of the famous and popular song from film ‘Jhoola’ (1941) – “Main To Dilli Se Dulhan Laaya Re”, sung by Arunkumar and Rehmat Bano. It was filmed on Mumtaz Ali and a debutant actress Shehzadi (not the sister of Zubeida, Sultana and Mehtab). I feel in this song some other tunes of songs are also present, but I could not identify them. This was the first ever song sung by Bharat Vyas in Hindi films.
 


Song – Main To Aagre Se Joota Laaya Re Ho Rani Ji (Prem Sangeet) (1943) Singers – Bharat Vyas, Shanta Thakkar, Lyrics – Bharat Vyas, Music – SK Pal

Lyrics (Provided by Sudhir)

main aagre se
main jaipur se
o main aagre se
o main jaipur se

main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji
main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji
main jaipur se chunri laayi re
ho raja ji
main jaipur se chunri laayi re
ho raja ji
o main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji

aao paniya
aao paniya bharan ko chalen
haan haan paniya bharan ko chalo na re
haan chalo na re
ui chalo na re
aao paani pioge raja
na na chaai pilaao
na na paani pio
na na chaai pilaao
na na paani pio
pio pio
ye paani ka pyaala hai
pio pio
main naahin piunga
main naahin piunga
hato to to to. . .

mora jiya ghanda mera
keh sakoon ganwaar hai
mora jiya ghanda mera
keh sakoon ganwaar hai
hua hai qusoor humse zuroor
maaf hamen karo huzoor

khaao khaao kasam
tum ram ji ki
haan haan ram ji ki
hanuman ji ki
ho siya jaanki ki
aaj gori women ko haraaya re
ho ram ji
aaj gori women ko haraaya re
ho ram ji

main aagre se
o main jaipur se
o main aagre se
o main jaipur se
main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji
main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji
main jaipur se chunri laayi re
ho raja ji
main jaipur se chunri laayi re
ho raja ji
ho main aagre se
main aagre se joota laaya re
ho rani ji

———————————————————-
Hindi script lyrics (Provided by Sudhir)
———————————————————-

मैं आगरे से
मैं जयपुर से
हो मैं आगरे से
हो मैं जयपुर से

मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी
मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी
मैं जयपुर से चुनरी लाई रे
हो राजा जी
मैं जयपुर से चुनरी लाई रे
हो राजा जी
ओ मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी

आओ पनियां
आओ पनियां भरन को चलें
हां हां पनियां भरन को चलो ना रे
हाँ चलो ना रे
ऊई चलो ना रे
आओ पानी पीओगे राजा
ना ना चाय पिलाओ
ना ना पानी पियो
ना ना चाय पिलाओ
ना ना पानी पियो
पीओ पीओ
ये पानी का प्याला है
पीओ पीओ
मैं नाहीं पीऊँगा
मैं नाहीं पीऊँगा
हटो टो टो टो॰ ॰ ॰

मोरा जिया घणा मेरा
के सकूँ गंवार है
मोरा जिया घणा मेरा
के सकूँ गंवार है
हुआ है क़ुसूर हमसे जुरूर
माफ हमें करो हुज़ूर

खाओ खाओ कसम तुम राम की
हाँ हाँ राम जी की
हनुमान जी की
हो सिया जानकी की
आज गोरी वुमेन को हराया रे
हो राम जी
आज गोरी वुमेन को हराया रे
हो राम जी

मैं आगरे से
ओ मैं जयपुर से
हो मैं आगरे से
हो मैं जयपुर से

मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी
मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी
मैं जयपुर से चुनरी लाई रे
हो राजा जी
मैं जयपुर से चुनरी लाई रे
हो राजा जी
हो मैं आगरे से
ओ मैं आगरे से जूता लाया रे
हो रानी जी

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10 Responses to "Main To Aagre Se Joota Laaya Re Ho Rani Ji"

I hear at least “Main to dilli se dulhan laaya re” from JHOOLA (1941), “Chalo paaniya bharan ko chalen” from KHANDAN (1942), “Aaj mausam salona salona re” from JHOOLA (1941), “Saawan ke nazaare hain” from KHAZANCHI (1941), “Mere liye jahaan mein” from KHANDAN (1942), and “Hua kya qasoor” from BASANT (1942).

Thanks, Shalin ji.

Also add “Chaay piyogi raani aao chaay pilaayen” from KUNWARA BAAP (1942) in between the parodies of “Mere liye jahaan mein” and “Hua kya qasoor.” Thereafter it is back to parodying “Main to dilli se dulhan laaya re.”

Actually, my mistake. The parody of “Chaay piyogi raani” from KUNWARA BAAP (1942) comes in between the “Aaj mausam salona salona re” and “Saawan ke nazaare hain” parodies.

Arun ji,

Quoting Listeners’ Bulletin of 134 of July 2007, you have stated that ‘ALL songs including those attributed to Neena were sung by Sitara Kanpuri only’.

My understanding is that Sitara Kanpuri started singing for Neena only from ‘Man Ki Jeet’ (1944) onward. Prior to this , Neena had worked in W Z Ahmed’s films like ‘Ek Raat’ (1942) and ‘Prem Sangeet’ (1943) and I do not think that Sitara Kanpuri had sung for her in these two films. The female voices in the songs of these two films , in my view, do not sound like that of Sitarabai Kanpuri.

Please go through RMIM discussions https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/rec.music.indian.misc/rr0a1Hvcgig . W Z Ahmed said that all the songs for Neena were sung by Sitara Kanpuri only in the context of ‘Man Ki Jeet’ (1944).

Neena worked in 6 films in India. You have already mentioned the names of 5 films. Her 6th film was Shahzaadi (1947).

Incidentally, Shanta Thakkar has already made her debut in the Blog:
https://atulsongaday.me/2015/03/10/chhip-chhip-kar-mat-dekho-ji-bhanwarji/

Addedum:
Neena also worked in ‘Prithviraj Sanyukta’ (1946) thus making her works in 7 films in India.

Ek Raat, prem Sangeet, Mann ki Baat, Prithwiraj-Sanyogita and Meerabai……..5 films.
Even your article ( and mine) already counts Prithvi.

Arun ji,
Kindly read the question put to Ahmed in my quoted link. It was with reference to the film ‘Man Ki Jeet’ (1944). Obviously, Ahmed’s answer ‘no songs were recorded in Neena’s voice’ is correct with reference to the film.

I have no issue with Ahmed’s statement that ‘no songs were recorded in Neena’s voice’. I raised the issued regarding ‘ALL the songs including those attributed to Neena were sung by Sitarabai Kanpuri only’. The word ‘ALL the songs’ confuses unless it is qualified by ‘from ‘Man Ki Jeet’ (1944) onward, Sitara Kanpuri only sang for Neena’.

About “Sehzaadi’ (1947), I quote from page 201 of Kamalakar Pasupuleti’s book ‘MUSIC AND ARTS IN HYDERBAD DECCAN (2017)

“……I (Nawab Saheb) understand that Shahida (Neena) beti has become an actress. I just learnt from her that our good old friend Josh Malihabadi is also working in their film company writing stories and lyrics. …..

She (Shahid) is working on a new assignment of her forthcoming movie Shahzadi in which she is supposed to ride on a pony and hence she was practising. She went around the area and found the place suitable for shooting some parts of of the movie of Shahzadi around here…….

I believe few songs were also recorded for the movie penned by Josh saheb”.

So from this reference, it is clear that Neena worked in ‘Shahzadi’ (1947). Since this information is not available elsewhere, almost in every reference, only 5 films are accredited to her as actress which were made in India..

Yes, sorry for my mistake. I somehow missed the name of ‘Prithviraj Sanyogita’ (1946) mentioned in your article.

Sadanand ji,

1.I would request you to kindly go thru the quoted link once again. Ahmed has clearely said, ‘ No songs were recorded in Neena’s voice’. He has
also clarified that Neena was not a singer. Further this link is of 2001, whereas LB is of 2007, so there is every possibility that the later information is a confirmed news. i had seen this discussion before writing the article.
2. As far as film ‘ Shehzadi’ -47 is concerned, I had checked about this film also. HFGK does not mention any names of the cast,or the director. Ahmed and Neena left India, after partition, but we do not know the date when they left. In all probability, it must be immediately only. In absence of any data about Shehzadi in HFGK, or elsewhere, I did not mention this film as her film. Normally, it is believed that she worked only in 5 films.
3. Shanta Thakkar’s name was not found in the ” Statistics” list on the Blog, when I checked, may be I missed it. Thanks for this info.

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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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