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

Ek prem ki pyaasi bani banwaasi

Posted on: June 25, 2021

This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a regular contributor to this blog. This article is meant to be posted in If this article appears in other sites without the knowledge and consent of the web administrator of, then it is piracy of the copyright content of and is a punishable offence under the existing laws

Blog Day :

4725 Post No. : 16438

Blog 10-Year Challenge (2011-2021) – Song No.27

The story of Shakuntala which is based on a classic Sanskrit play ‘Abjijanashakuntalam’ written by Kalidas has been one of the favourites of film makers. Two silent films with the title ‘Shakuntala’ were made in 1920 – one directed by Suchet Singh and the other by Shrinath Patankar. In 1929, Fatma Begum also directed a silent film with the same title. With the advent of sound film in 1931, two films were released with the same title in 1931 – one directed by Mohan Bhavnani and the other by J J Madan. Sarvottam Badami of Sagar Movietone directed ‘Shakuntala’ (1932) in Telugu. Jyotish Banerjee directed ‘Shakuntala’ (1941) in Bengali.

When V Shantaram set up his own Rajkamal Kala Mandir in 1942, he produced and directed ‘Shakuntala’ (1943) as his first film under his banner. He remade the film in 1961 with the title ‘Stree’. Bhupen Hazarika made the film in Assamese in 1961 and Kunchako directed the film in 1965 in Malayalam. The list is not exhaustive but the number of films made so far shows the popularity of the story of Shakuntala.

Since Prabaht Films did not make film on ‘Shakuntala, probably, V Shantaram thought of making Shakuntala as his first film after leaving Prabhat Films in May 1942, V Shantaram set up his own film production company, Rajkamal Kala Mandir. In October 1942, he acquired Wadia Movietone’s studio and renovated the same which took about 3 months. Simultaneously, he was also busy with the preparatory work for his maiden film, ‘Shakuntala’ (1943). When the studio was ready after renovation, he signed Chandramohan for the role of Dushyant opposite Jayshree in the role of Shakuntala. The shooting of Shakuntala started in January 1943 and it took about six months to complete the shooting. The film was released tereafter.

‘Shakuntala’ (1943) was a big box office hit which laid a strong foundation for Rajkamal Kala Mandir. In Mumbai, the film ran for 104 weeks in Swastik theatre. In 1947, the film was released in the USA with English sub-titles. The New York Times carried the review of the film in its issue dated December 26, 1947. Among other things, the review has said:

Shakuntala has charm entirely of its own. The story – call it a fairy tale or just plain Hollywood – is strictly boy-meet-girl, forest version with inevitable reunion. The lovely background, the unabashed naivete of acting of the entire cast, the crudely rich musical score and above all the expertly flavoursome English subtitles all blend together to make Shakuntala a sturdy screen promises from our Indian friends.

Almost all the songs of the film became very popular. I recall that my mother used to often sing at least 3 songs from the film, one of which I am presenting with this article. She was singing despite the fact that she did not speak and understand Hindi at that time (in the late 1940s) in my native place. Of course, I heard her singing in my childhood only when we shifted to Mumbai in early 1950s and realised after about six decades that the songs she was singing were from ‘Shakuntala’ (1943).

‘Shakuntala’(1943) was the beginning of a long association of V Shantaram with Vasant Desai as a music director which continued till ‘Mausi’ (1958). It is said that during the making of ‘Navrang’ (1959), their relations sour leading to the separation. But his respect to his mentor, V Shantaram was so great that he did not reveal the reasons of his separation even to his family members. Later, he was recalled by V Shantaram to provide background music for ‘Geet Gaya Patharon Ne’ (1964) and as a music director for ‘Ladki Sahyadri Ki’ (1966).

10 years back, one song from the film ‘Shakuntala’ (1943) was posted on the Blog. So far, 9 songs (out of 13) from the film have been posted on the Blog, details of which are as under:

Sr. No. Song Posting Date
01 Jeewan ki naao na doley 09/06/2011
02 Kamal hai mere saamne 25/06/2011
03 Pyaari pyaari ye sukhad maatribhoomi apni 26/06/2011
04 Jhooloongi jhooloongi 30/06/2011
05 Tumhe prasann yoon dekh ke 04/05/2014
06 Chaand sa nanha aaya 06/05/2014
07 Na jaane kahaan ka ye jaadoo kiya hai 24/07/2017
08 Chali apne ghar ko Shakuntala 18/08/2018
09 Mere baba ne baat meri maan li 04/08/2019

I am presenting the 10th song, ‘ek prem ki pyaasi bani banwaasi’ from the film, sung by Amirbai Karnataki. The song is written by Ratan Piya which is set to music by Vasant Desai.

The song is picturised on Zohrabai (not to be confused with Zohrabai Ambalewaali), in the role of Menaka to seduce sage Vishwamitra to break his meditation. The song can be regarded as one of the earliest attempts of ‘honey trap’ which Lord Indra laid, fearing that with his deep ascetic practice and meditation, sage Vishwamitra would acquire enormous power to challenge the gods.



Song-Ek prem ki pyaasi bani banwaasi (Shakuntala)(1943) Singer-Amirbai Karnataki, Lyrics-Ratan Piya, MD-Vasant Desai


aa aa aaa
aa aa aa aaa
aa aa aaa
aa aa aa aaa
ek prem ki pyaasi
ek prem ki pyaasi
bani banwaasi
ban mein tumhaare aayi
ban mein tumhaare aayi
nain khol dekh o bairaagi
nain khol dekh o bairaagi
bairaagan kya laayi
bairaagan kya laayi
aa aa aaa
aa aa aaa

main roopmayi
tum gyaanjayee
main vilaasi tum banwaasi ee
prem bina sab gyaan adhoora
prem bina sab gyaan adhoora aa
mat bhoolo sanyaasi
mat bhoolo sanyaasi
aa aa aaa
aa aa aa aa
aa aa aaa
aa aa aa aa
ek prem ki pyaasi bani banwaasi
ban mein tumhaare aayi
nain khol dekh o bairaagi
bairaagan kya laayi
bairaagan kya laayi
aa aa aaaaaa

1 Response to "Ek prem ki pyaasi bani banwaasi"

Sadanand ji
The lines about your Mother` singing made me very emotional………….
Thanks for the informative post, enjoyed it very much………


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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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