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

Digant Nath devata anant roop sohta

Posted on: June 26, 2020


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 other sites without the knowledge and consent of the web administrator of atulsongaday.me, then it is piracy of the copyright content of atulsongaday.me and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Blog Day:

4361 Post No. : 15684

Today’s song, rather a beautiful Bhajan, is from the film Bhagwat Mahima-55. Earlier 3 songs/Bhajans of this film are discussed here, so it will be the 4th Bhajan from this film to appear here.

The film was made by Filmistan. It was directed by a veteran All-rounder Vithaldas Panchotiya and the music was composed by Hemant kumar- who was famous for creating Bhajans in films.

Hemant Kumar’s associaton with Filmistan started with the film Anand math-52. Director Hemen Gupta recommended his name to S.Mukherjee at that time. Having heard Hemant’s name for his Bangla songs, Mukherjee accepted his name. Earlier C Ramchandra had left Filmistan during the making of film Shabistan-51, due to the interference of his old tormentor Bibhuti Mitra, the film Director.(He was called for the film Anarkali again, after Basant Prakash had left halfway).

Hemant did many films for Filmistan like Shart-54, Samrat-54,Nagin-54, Jagriti-54, Bhagwat Mahima-55 and Durgesh nandini-56. When Hemant was asked to make music for the film Nagin, an interesting event happened. S.Mukherjee had never worked with Master Bhagwan, but he had immense faith in Bhagwan’s Music sense. Most times Mukherjee used to ask Bhagwan’s advice on song tunes of his films. One day, C Ramchandra hosted a party at his bungalow-Sai prasad, Dadar, to celebrate Silver jubilee of film Albela. When the party was in full swing, on the IIIrd floor terrace, Mukherjee called Bhagwan aside and asked him to come with him to the ground floor. Bhagwan was surprised, but without questioning, he accompanied him to the ground floor. There he saw a young man with a Harmonium. Mukherjee said,” Dada, listen to these tunes and give me your opinion.” Then he turned to that young bespectacled man and asked him to play his song tunes. After listening to the tunes, Bhagwan looked excited and said,” My God, kya superb tunes hai ye. Sab gaane hit honge”. That was Hemant Kumar with Nagin Tunes ! Needless to say that Mukherjee passed all tunes.

The decade of 1950s, besides being a part of the “Golden Era” of Hindi film music, also was a very favourable period for Religious films. This was a decade in which maximum number of Mythological/Religious films were made – a record number of 124 films in 10 years’ time. This gave an unprecedented average of One film every month for 10 years at a stretch ! This was a period when joint families still existed and there were many senior citizens in almost every family-who were keen on seeing religious films. The TV had not yet arrived and stage dramas were relegated to the second place in entertainment for families.

During the 1960s and the 1970s, the number of Religious films dwindled, as a variety of topics were handled by films – including the New Wave films, which focused on different issues of the Middle class Indians.

Film Bhagwat Mahima-55 was based on Bhagwat Puran stories. Out of all the 18 Puranas of Hindu religion, Bhagwat Puran is the most popular and most read scripture. It contains 18000 Shlokas in 12 Cantos or Chapters and has stories about Lord Shri Krishna and his devotees. Bhagwat puran has 3 main sections, which emphasize about 1) Bhakti Yog or the Spiritual path to God, 2) Dnyaan Yog or the Wisdom Path and 3) (Nishkaam) Karm Yog or the Virtuous Action Path (without expecting fruits thereof). The entire Puran is about Krishna from his birth to his exit from this world and stories about events and people connected with him throughout his Mortal life.

Hemant Kumar (16-6-1920 to 26-9-1989) excelled in religious films, with his melodious music,often sung in his own voice. Looking at his career statistics, he was more successful as a Singer in Hindi films than as a Music Director. He sang 320 songs in 173 films, while he gave music to only 55 films, composing 423 songs, in his career. I simply love his songs, especially his duets with Lata and Geeta Dutt.

When he first came to Bombay in 1951 to score music for film Anand Math-52, he had a problem with Hindi language pronunciations. As a professional, it is to his credit that he tried hard and successfully corrected his Hindi, while retaining the characteristic Bangla sweetness in his voice. Lata had once said,” when Hemant Kumar sings, you feel a Sadhu is singing !”. Hemant Kumar usually wore a Dhoti and Kurta. His voice was typically different and by nature he was a thorough Gentleman.

The director of this film was Vithaldas Panchotiya. Except those readers, who have a knowledge of early era Hindi films, it is unlikely that other readers might have even heard this name. In the early era, when the studio system was firmly established, the artistes employed by the studio had no specific duties. Anybody and everybody had to do what was needed by the company. Due to this many capable artistes became all rounders in film making.

Vithaldas Panchotiya was certainly one such person. He has been a Producer, Director, story writer, dialogue writer, screenplay writer, lyricist, Singer, Music Director and God knows what else !

Born in October 1906 in Vadnagar in Gujarat, he followed his father’s footsteps. His father worked in stage dramas and toured with the drama company. From the age of 8 years Vithaldas started acting in dramas. Later he joined Calcutta’s Alfred Drama company, owned by Madon Theatres Limited. He worked on a salary of Rs. 35 pm. While working in dramas, he established his own Gujarat Film company and produced 12 silent films in 10 years. Vithaldas first acted in silent film ‘ Dhruv charitra’-1921. He learnt dance and music too. He acted , directed, sang songs and gave music also. He acted in Talkie film ” Muflis Ashiqe”-1932, claimed to be India’s first comedy film. He acted, sang and composed music for this film.

Being a staunch Gandhian, he used to participate in rallies etc. Some of his films were Hindustan-32, Insaf ki Tope-34, Gaibi Gola-35 ( he was the writer and the director too.He gave a break to Baby Noorjahan in this film.), Khudai Khidamadgar-37 aka Garib ki Tope, Takdir ki Tope-38 etc . As per one source, he acted in 35 films, directed 10 talkie films, sang 8 songs, gave music to 1 film and wrote Lyrics to 2 films. Additionally story, dialogues and screenplay writing were also done by him. Some of his films were, Shaikh chilli-37, Khush naseeb-46, Prabhu ki maya-55, Ghar ki numaish-49, Karmaveer-38, Raman-54, Jagriti-54, Hum sab chor hain-56, Basant 60, Bhagvat mahima etc.

I find it very difficult to know exactly how many films he did in various capacities in the 1930s, as there are conflicting claims by him and Master Fida Hussain. In a few cases the details in HFGK and what he claims, gets contradicted. Some of his films in the 40s are Ramanuj-43, Giribala-47, Grihalaxmi-48, Ghar ki Numaish-48 ( released only in 1962, with the title ‘ Jai ho muhabbat ki ‘ )

Thanks to information and statistical data provided by Shri Harish Raghuwanshi ji of Surat, we know that his Filmography consists of a total 11+ 26 films. The break up is-

11 silent films
25 Talkie films as Actor and 1 film as a writer only.
9 films as a Director
2 films as Lyricist and
2 films as Music Director
As per Muvyz data, he sang 37 songs in 8 films.

from 1951 to 1960, he did 13 films- mostly ( 9) for Filmistan. He directed 2 of them. After 1960 his work was reduced. The death of his 3 sons broke him emotionally. As a true Gandhian, it was his dream to make a film- Gandhi Sangram- on mahatma Gandhi. He had done all the spade work and the Muhurat of shooting was also done on 2-10-1987, The Government had promised finance. Even Rajiv Gandhi promised him that. However nothing came to him and he died on 30-10-1996, with his dream unfulfilled.

His daughter Shradha used to work in Gujarati films. She too died in a Train accident in 2000. Her daughter Deepshikha is an actress.

The story of the film Bhagwat Mahima-55 is……

Nagar Seth, a rich man living in one of the gayest cities of India, had everything he wanted in life with one exception. And that was his having no children. His wife, Shanta, consoled him by saying that it was better not to have a child rather than have one who would ruin the fair name of the family by his mis-deeds. She narrated to her husband the story of Sukhram who served his son for three generations in the forms of a bull, a dog and a serpent, even though he could have gone to heaven without doing this service. His son, however, ill-treated the father throughout. Anyway, the story failed to impress Nagar Seth.

One day Shri Jagat Guru Shankaracharya happened to pass through the town. Shanta, who was a disciple of his, requested him to console her husband. In doing so, Shankaracharya narrated a story from the Immortal Classic, Shrimad Bhagvat, wherein Atmadev, also placed in similar circumstances, prayed for a child. Doing penance, Atmadev had `darshan of Narad Muni who gave him a fruit saying that his wife would beget a noble son if she ate the fruit. . Atmadevs wife had no faith in miracles and, on the advice of her sister, Ganga, gave the fruit to her cow.
Ganga, who was expecting a baby, offered her child to Dhundhuli (Atmadevs wife) for some consideration. Thus, Atmadev was made to believe that Ganga’s child was his own. He was named Dhundhukari.

At the same time, the cow which had eaten the fruit, also gave birth to a son who was human in every feature except his ears which were shaped like cows. This boy was also brought up by Atmadev and named “Gokarn”.

Both the boys grew up together and, in due course, became young men. Gokarn, who led a pious and righteous life, became a learned and famous man. Dhundhukari, on the other hand, grew up in bad ways and became the terror of the town. . One day, Dhundhukaris real father, i.e.Ganga’s husband, told Atmadev about his son’s real identity. This so much upset Atmadev that he went away into the forest. There, later, he lost his life.

Champa, a helpless girl and one of the many victims of Dhundhukari, conspired with some of her friends and killed Dhundhukari. Because of his manifold sins, he then became a wandering ghost. . Gokarn, who had now become a Mahatma, was at Gaya offering `Pind Dan to his deceased father when he learned about Dhundhukari’s fate. To relieve him of his ghostly existence, Gokarn offered `Pind Dan not once, but 108 times. Still, he was not successful. He then offered prayers to Suryadev on the advice of learned pandits. Suryadev, pleased with the prayers, blessed Gokarn and asked him to recite Shrimad Bhagvat for the salvation of Dhundhukari’s ghost.

Today’s Bhajan is sung by Hemant Kumar. It is a very good Bhajan rendered equally nicely by Hemant Kumar. I like it very much. You too will.


Song-Digant Nath devta anant roop sohta (Bhagwat Mahima)(1955) Singer- Hemant Kumar, Lyricist-Sarswati Kumar Deepak, MD- Hemant Kumar

Lyrics

om Japakusuma Samkaasham Kashyapeyam Mahadhyuthim
?? Tamorim Sarva Paapaghnam Pranathosmi Divakaram

Digant Nath devata
anant roop sohta
tamas kiran anek se
?? vishw paalate
Digant Nath devata
anant roop sohta
tamas kiran anek se
?? vishw paalate
Digant Nath devata

kripaalu Ravi kripa karo
kripaalu Ravi kripa karo
dayaalu Ravi daya karo
mahaan ye ?? tu
ke tum karo ??te
Digant Nath devata

suna rahe digant ke
anant ?? bhairavi
saja rahe ho tum nishaan
vishw bhar ki aarti
dukhon se ?? mukti do
ubaarne ki yukti do
sabhi ke paap taap ko
prabhu tumhi sanwaarte
Digant Nath devata
anant roop sohta
tamas kiran anek se
?? vishw paalate
Digant Nath devata
Digant Nath devata aa aa
Digant Nath devata aa aa

9 Responses to "Digant Nath devata anant roop sohta"

Arun Ji, Thanks for the post. Your statement that Hemanth Kumar was more successful as a singer compared to as a MD, ( in Hindi films) made me reflect. Yes the name Hemanth Kumar immediately conjures up the singer.
Can you or any one inform if he sang more under other MD’s than under his own music direction?
PS : Song of the post is appealing, full of devotion.

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Satish ji,
Thanks for your comments.Though I do not have exact details, I can vouch that Hemant kumar sang more songs under other MDs than he sang for his own films. He was never keen on singing in films where he was the MD. Some Heroes like Rajesh khanna flatly refused to lip synch his songs on the screen, even when he was the MD for film Khamoshi. On his own, in films like Do dil, Miss Mary and Jagriti, he did not sing even one song.
And yes, today’s song is really very good.
-AD

Like

Dear Guru ji,

As has been said before, the people from the past come very much alive on all your Posts. Kudos to you again.

It is a great pity that Hemanto did not sing/chant more Sanskrit Shlokas as his voice was eminently suitable for them. I am taking the liberty of appending some examples from Bangla Films :

As most of us know, the Spanish Music Maestro FRANCISCO CASANOVAS personally trained Hemanto on the subject of Counter Melody, a skill which the latter used to such telling effect in many films, especially the song “Jai Jagadish Hare” in the film “Anandmath”.

With warm regards

PARTHA CHANDA

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Partha ji,
Thanks for your appreciation.
Thanks also for providing 3 songs in HK’s voice.
The third one…Hey Chandrachooda Madanantak Shoolpaane….is also in film Yatrik (Hindi remake of Bangla film Maha Prasthaner pathey), in the voice of Pankaj Mullick. It is the Shiv Namavali Ashtakam. It was posted by me on 9-3-2013 here. The second seems to be from Kalidasa’s Meghdootam, as I hear ” Ashadhasya pratham divase…” in it. I could not make out where from the First one was.
It is an undescribable joy to hear such Sanskrit kritis in the divine voices of Pankaj Mullick and Hemant Kumar.
Thanks again.
-AD

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Partha ji,
I was pleasantly surprised by the several comments we received after I posted ” Hey Chandrachood madanantak…” on 9-3-2013, from various places in the world like the US,UK and others. I would suggest you to visit this song here and see for yourself the reactions of our readers. Those were,perhaps, days when readers expressed their feelings more frequently….
-AD

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Dear Guru ji,

As instructed by you, I promptly visited your Post dated March 2013 and was truly impressed by the range of comments and suggestions.

Again, it was thanks to your magic with words that attracts so many from such distances.

Thank you, again.

With warm regards

PARTHA CHANDA

Like

Dear Guru ji,

There is one other comment re: C Ramchandra and “Anarkali”. From something I have read somewhere, the story goes something like this :

C Ramchandra, who was one of the in-house Music Directors on Filmistan’s payroll at that time, was given only one instruction by Director NANDLAL JAISWAL – that all the songs featured on the Heroine Bina Rai were to be sung by Geeta Roy.

C Ramchandra, on the other hand, insisted that all the songs for the Heroine would be sung by Lata Mangeshkar, then his favourite. As a fall out of that, he was thrown out of the Film and in came Music Director BASANT PRAKASH, younger brother of noted Music Director KHEMCHAND PRAKASH. After recording just one song sung by Geeta Roy, Basant fell seriously ill and had to withdraw from the Film. It was at this stage that HEMANT KUMAR was roped in and he recorded just three songs, all featuring himself, before he too withdrew from the now jinxed Film. In desperation, the Management of Filmistan leaned heavily on the Director who had no option but to recall C Ramchandra and agree to his condition. As we now know, all the remaining songs filmed on Bina Rai were sung by Lata. The story doesn’t end there. It is said that goaded on by Lata, perhaps, Ramchandra insisted on the deletion of the song sung by Geeta as the Heroine could not be heard singing in two different voices. But the song was so integral to the development of the Plot of “Anarkali”, that there was no way but to retain the song.

Here is that controversial song by Geeta Roy, together with clips of dialogue which demonstrate why the song was so important and had to be retained :

Worse was to follow. The words of the above song by Geeta were written by famous Poet JAN NISAR AKHTAR. In an effort to delete the song from the Film, they deleted the credit to Jan Nisar Akhtar as the Lyricist. So while the Song remains, there is no credit to either the Lyricist (JN AKHTAR) or the Composer (BASANT PRAKASH) of that particular song, nor is there any reference to Hemant Kumar for the three songs composed by him. Such are the quirks of Hindi Cinema !

With warm regards

PARTHA CHANDA

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Partha ji,
The story about Anarkali’s music, as given by you starts with a mistaken event.
At the time of Anarkali-53, CR was NOT in Filmistan. He had already resigned and had left Filmistan during the making of Shabistan-51, because there was an altercation between the film’s director Bibhuti Mitra and CR. Earlier too when CR was new in Filmistan, at the time of his first film Safar-46, B.Mitra had interfered with CR’s work. Being a new person, CR tolerated him and in any case, B MItra soon left Filmistan to go to Calcutta again. He was called back for Shabistan again.
Point is, CR was NOT with Filmistan at the time of Anarkali.
Secondly, Filmistan had permitted CR to delete Geeta’s song, but like a professional, CR refused to delete it and kept it in the film. He also insisted that on the commercial record name of Geeta, Jaan Nisar Akhtar and Basant Prakash should be mentioned, which was done. You can see that record.HFGK also lists them.
Thirdly,nowhere have I read about Hemant Kumar being in the picture of Anarkali music making. I dont know how his name has come.
Further after JNAkhtar , there were 3 fresh Lyricists who wrote Anarkali songs. Rajendra Krishna, Shailendra, and Hasrat Jaipuri. Their names are in the credit. I find one more name Sardar Jafri in the credit. He has no songs. Could it be a mistake that instead of Jan Nisar akhtar, Sardar Jafri’s name was credited ? Possible.
In any case, the music Director has no role in preparing the list of credits in any film.
After the exit of Basant Prakash, CR was requested, on his terms, to come to Filmistan and give music of Anarkali (agreeing to songs of Lata). Nowhere have I come across any reference that Lata wanted Geeta’s song to be deleted.

All these matters are written in CR’s Marathi autobiography and the book ” Cinemacha Cinema” by Isak Mujawar.

-AD

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Dear Guru ji,

Many thanks for setting the record straight and clearing up a lot of mistaken notions.

With warm regards

PARTHA CHANDA

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