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

Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara

Posted on: April 8, 2022


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 : 5012 Post No. : 16917 Movie Count : 4595

Today’s song is from an ” interesting” film – Pamposh-1953.

I have always been stating that History is never permanent. Whenever new evidence comes, the history changes to that effect. Same is the case with Film History. It keeps on changing, whenever honest workers dig up new evidence with credible proofs. This is normal and Film History lovers have accepted it too. Occasionally – very occasionally or almost rarely, some such evidence comes out which no one had ever dreamt about and when no one had ever doubted the existing accepted matters as facts.

From the early 80’s or to be precise, when Harmandir Singh Hamraz ji published his HFGK for the 50’s decade, as the first in his series of many decades subsequently, we all had known that the Music Director of film Pamposh-1953 was Manoharlal Khanna – father of MD Usha Khanna, the second prolific woman composer for hindi films. (the first prolific woman MD was Saraswati Devi). It was mentioned in the HFGK and Usha Khanna too had repeatedly told so in her articles and interviews.

During the last few years, I have met close relatives of many yesteryear artistes and interviewed them. One thing I noticed was that most relatives, those close ones, did not know or were not sure of certain matters. Sometimes they knowingly told wrong things to enhance the image of that artiste. So I learnt to counter check facts before including them in the interview material.

Usha Khanna’s case also seems to be like this. I carefully listened to her interview about her father, posted on RMIM recently and I found that she made claims which were not wholly correct about her father. One of the claims she always made was that it was she who actually had given music to film pamposh, but her father’s name was credited. Actually neither Usha Khanna (who was barely 12 year old in 1953)nor her father M.L.Khanna had given music to film Pamposh-53. It is noteworthy to note that HFGK has a footnote for this film stating that ” The film booklet mentions MD’s name as Mohan Lal Aima and Cecil Mendoza”. Enthusiastic senior RMIM members worked furiously on this issue and dug up several proofs to arrive at a conclusion that MOHAN LAL AIMA was actually the Music Director of film Pamposh-53.

Film Pamposh was screened at the Cannes Film Festival, France on 9-4-1954 with the French title “FLEUR DE LOTUS” (Lotus of Kashmir or कश्मीरी कमल ). In that also the MD’s name was given as Mohan Lal Aima. This film was made in English, French, Spanish,Italian, German, Hindi, Bengali and Tamil and had won high praise in Cannes, as per the French newspaper “LE MONDE”. This information is from the book ” The world of Ezra Mir” by N.J.Kamath, pub.2005.

I am not only impressed but also amazed to see how the active RMIM members coordinate while working on a research project. Some of the senior members, like Magicians, produce Links, Photographs, Book extracts, Paper cuttings etc. to add to the information. I am not taking any names, because

i) the list will be too long and

ii) they all are equally knowledgeable and hard workers.

Imagine doing their regular jobs and yet contributing enthusiastically on the forum which is simply superhuman ! My Hats Off to RMIM !. Over the years, they have contributed substantially to Hindi film history. I Hope some members produce a book on RMIM. One small book already published is not enough.

Now the important point would be to know who this M L Aima is. Here is his information,collected from various sources made available on RMIM forum.

Mohan Lal Aima was born in a family of ‘Datatreya Kauls’ of Fateh Kadal, Srinagar, on 21-7-1922 . This area was across the Jhelum river and close to Syed Ali Akbar locality. His father , Pandit Ved Lal Aima had earned respect and goodwill in the society even with his modest means and simple living. The family got Aima nickname as some elder from this clan was a gifted osteopath (Waatangor) who cured many people with fractures and dislocations.

After completing his M.A. LLB, and a Diploma in Statistics, he was to join Bar and establish himself as an advocate, but contrary to that, he gave a surprise/shock to his family and the conservative Kashmiri Pandit society ( at that point of time) when he decided to opt for music and singing as his career. During those days, it was something like a rebellious act for his middle-class family. And he earned the nickname “Mohan Chhakri”.

He also led a group of boys that sang this song when Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru and Sheikh Mohd Abdullah addressed a huge gathering at Palladium cinema Lal chowk Srinagar in November 1947 . This song was written by Maulana Masoodi, a close associate of Sheikh Mohd Abdullah during those days and it used to be played as an anthem song in official functions during 1948 and 1949.

He scored music for first full-length Kashmiri feature film MAENZRAAT. He scored music for Nadim sahib’s opera ‘Bombur Ta Yemberzal’ that was widely appreciated and shown to Russian dignitaries Nikita Khruschev and Nikolai Bulganin. during their visit to Kashmir. It was performed in early December, 1955 at Nedou’s Hotel , Srinagar by a galaxy of Kashmiri artists and singers. Marshal Bulganin was reportedly seen tapping his foot when the artists sang the Bomburo Bomburo. He also scored music for the Kashmiri version of the movie “Shayar e Kashmir’ Mehjoor”.

His tune for Nadim Sahib’s composition “Bomburo Bumburo Shaam Rang Bomburo” became popular in the entire length and breadth of the country after it was used in a Bollywood movie.

He scored music for Ezra Mir’s 1953 film “Lotus of Kashmir(Pamposh)”.It was produced by Ambalal J. Patel. He also scored music for “ROKO” a short telefilm produced for Door Darshan by M Y Bhat . It was telecast from four metros of the country sometime in1975 or 1976. He further gave music to the film “Kashmira”, produced by Childrens Film Society.

He was also commissioned by Muzaffar Ali as a music consultant cum co-composer for his aborted high profile film Zooni ( Story based on the life of Habba Khatoon ) . The music of the international version was to be done by Oscar winner Japanese composer, Riyuchi Sakamoto, while music for all the songs in Kashmiri was to be scored by Mohan Lal Aima. And the renowned fashion designer, Mary McFadden of New York had been engaged to design the costumes of the film.Muzaffar Ali had to put his project on hold due to widespread militancy in Kashmir. The shooting of this high profile movie with Dimple Kapadia and Vinod Khanna in lead roles had been started during the summer of 1989.

He was the Head of the Music section in Radio Kashmir, Srinagar from 1949 to 1964. Aima was sent as Director General, on deputation to Kabul for Radio Afghanistan. He became extremely popular there. Later he was transferred to New Delhi and Bombay also. During 1979, he lived in Seven Bunglows area of Andheri West in Bombay. He was always eager to help the visiting Kashmiri artistes and arranged for their staying free at Bombay.

Aima could play several traditional Kashmiri Musical instruments. In Bombay, he prepared a CD of kashmiri Devotional geets. It was named ” Man Pamposh”. It became very popular. In 1990, he was bed ridden with Cancer and he died in Bombay.

Many eminent music experts and his friends like Padmashree Pran Kishore Kaul, Bihari Kak – actor, Muzaffar Ali, Padmashri Moti Lal Khemu and others have written about him.

His brother Omkarnath Aima was an actor. He was the hero of the First Kashmiri film “Maenz Raat”. Onkar’s son Alok Aima was also an actor and worked in many Hindi films like “Jaane bhi do yaaron “. M.L Aima’s son Satish Kaul was also an actor. (Based mainly on an article by Shri Autar Mota, on his Blog The Chinar Shade, with thanks and RMIM sources.)

This film was directed by Ezra Mir. Some of the Senior readers, in the bracket of 55 to 75 years of age would recollect the Indian Documentaries made by Ezra Mir, shown before almost every film in the theatres. Indian News Reel and these documentaries on various subjects were actually used as a facility to enter the theatre late and still catch the whole movie from the beginning. These documentaries were made mostly by Ezra Mir and the voice over used to be that of Pratap Sharma usually. ( his younger brother Mahesh Sharma was my good friend in those days).

Ezra Mir was one of the rare persons who worked in the famous Hollywood studios for a considerable time, before he came to India and got involved in making films here. He was also a rare person who, despite being in great demand in the commercial cinema, chose to join a Government organisation and did monumental significant work for the future generations. For a long time, I was thinking him to be a Muslim man, but at a much later date, I came to know that he was a Jew person.

Ezra Mir ( real name Edwyn Meyers) was born on 26-10-1902 at Calcutta. After completing his education, he joined Madon Theatres in 1921. In 1923, he left for Europe and America to work in the film industry. After doing bit roles in Rudolph Valentino’s films in Long Island, New York and working for First National Biograph Studios, he joined the Universal studios as a ” Film Cutter” and later as a Scenario writer. By his diligent and hard work he became the chief of story Department in United Artistes. In 1929, he wrote and directed a film ‘ Simbolisque ‘, which created a sensation in the film circle there.

With the advent of the Talkie, he came back to India , joined Imperial Film co. and made film Noorjehan-31 in Hindi and English. In 32-33, he joined Sagar movietone and directed Zarina-32, Pagal premee-33 and Farzand e Hind-34. Then Ezra went to Calcutta. After doing some films he came back and made documentaries on second world war. In 1940, he was appointed by the Govt. on the Film Advisory Board. In 1942, when V.Shantaram left as its head, he became the head. From 1942 to 1946, he made 170 documentaries.

In 1951 he joined the Films Division and in 1956, became its President. In his tenure here, he made 400 documentaries. In 1970 he got ‘ Padma Shri ‘. Ezra Mir died on 7-3-1993. His Filmography is Noorjehan-31, Zarine-32, Pagal premi-33, Farzand e Hind-34, Mera Pyara and Rasheeda-35,Jeevan Sangram, Parivartan,Rajdulari and Shaitan ka pash-36, Rikshawala-38,Sitara-39, Beete din-47, pamposh-54 and Raju aur gangaram-64.

The cast of the film was Moghali (Leela Kanade), B.Bilimorea, Violet Smith,Savitri,Vinod, Savi Multani, Rusi Patel and others. The story, screenplay and direction was of Ezra Mir. The film was produced by Ambalal Patel, who was with Sagar Movietone when it was launched in 1932. The lyricist was Manohar lal Khanna.There were 5 songs sung by Seeta Kalyanpur and Moti Sagar -3 solos and 2 duets.

Lastly, about the singer of today’s song-Seeta Kalyanpur. I have not got any information about her anywhere, but I faintly remember having read somewhere that She was the sister of Suman Kalyanpur’s husband. However I can’t confirm it. With this song Film Pamposh and Singer Seeta Kalyanpur make their Debut on our Blog.


Song- Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara (Pamposh)(1953) Singer-Seeta Kalyanpur, Lyricist- Manohar Lal Khanna, MD- Mohan Lal Aima and Cecil Mendoza

Lyrics

Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara
Kudrat ki godi mein khele
har nazaara
nazaara pyaara pyaara
ho nazaara pyaara pyaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara

phoolon ke hain yahaan khazaane
jharnon mein sangeet suhaane
phoolon ke
phoolon ke hain yahaan khazaane
jharnon mein sangeet suhaane
hardam bahti prem ki dhaara
nazaara pyaara pyaara
ho nazaara pyaara pyaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara

saada dil insaanon ki basti
mehnat ho jeewan ki kashti
saada dil insaanon ki basti
mehnat ho jeewan ki kashti
har mehnat hai hamen gawaara
nazaara pyaara pyaara
ho
nazaara pyaara pyaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara

dulhan si kashmir ki waadi
?? jo bhi shahzaadi
dulhan si kashmir ki waadi
?? jo bhi shahzaadi
kudrat ne hai ise sanwaara
nazaara pyaara pyaara
ho nazaara pyaara pyaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara
kudrat ke godi mein khele
har nazaara
nazaara pyaara pyaara
hai nazaara pyaara pyaara
Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara
Kashmir hamaara

6 Responses to "Jannat hai Kashmir hamaara"

Arun Ji, thanks for the post. Interesting information about Manohar Lal (who I did not know about), and Ezra Mir ( a very familiar name).
I always liked Ezra Mir’s documentaries.(I entered the theatre in time, also to catch his documentaries)

Like

Dear Satish ji,
Thanks for your appreciation.
Mohanlal Aima is not known to 99% people. This is first time his name is highlighted.
Ezra Mir’s documentaries were my favourites too.
-AD

Like

Arunji,
This is a fascinating tale of discovery, and misattribution and wrong claims by film personalities. I doubt if Usha Khanna’s case is lapse of memory. It might be taking advantage of wrong credit to his father as MD in HFGK, and since it was a ‘family’ matter there was no harm in making her claim. It was unnecessary, as she was herself an excellent music director.

I would make a correction – Mohanlal Aima would not be known to 100% people except a few who could be counted by our fingers.

To the credit of HFGK, they have added the footnote. Perhaps for lack of other confirmation, Hamrajji was not confident to correct it.
AK

Liked by 1 person

AK ji,
Thanks for your comments.
Indeed, some artistes do behave the way Usha ji did. But then Ultimately the truth comes out. I have had many such experiences. This is a Human Weakness, I suppose.
I was glad to get all this information on M L Aima. It took me few days to search and get all the information.
I am happy you liked the post.
Thanks again.
-AD

Like

Thank you Guruji for teaching followers of Hindi films like me.
This post is one that taught me that “bhumbro bhumbro shaam rang bhumbro” is not an original by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. and that it is one that has a long history in the Valley of Kashmir.
Valley of Kashmir- a dream destination for me which seems a distant dream.

Like

Peevesie’s Mom ji,
Many folk tunes from Kashmir have been used in Hindi film songs.
Thanks for your comments.
-AD

Like

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