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

Archive for the ‘Nazeera Begam songs’ Category

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 :

4743 Post No. : 16470

Playback singing was introduced for the first time in Hindi films for a song in New Talkies’ ‘Dhoop Chhaaon’ (1935) under the music direction of R C Boral. The song main khush hona chaahoon was sung by Parul Ghosh, Suprobha Sarkar, Harimati and K C Dey. In Bombay film industry, playback singing was introduced for the song ‘jeewan hai ek kahaani’ in Sagar Movietone’s ‘Mahageet’ (1937) which was sung by Anil Biswas under his own music direction. Unfortunately, gramophone record for this song was not issued.

There is a general impression that playback singing was introduced with a view to making trained singers sing for actors who can not sing. But the original intention of introducing the playback singing was mainly to segregate the functions of composing songs from the shooting of the song to afford flexibilities in picturisation of the song sequences. Hence, in the initial stages of playback singing – say during 1935-40 – it was mainly actors who would first record the songs in their own voices which would be lip sync on them on the screen. For examples, actor-singers like K L Saigal and Kanan Devi in Kolkata, Surendra and Khurshid Bano in Mumbai used to first record the song in their voices to be playback during the songs’ shooting.

It was some time towards the end of 1930s and the beginning of 1940s, that professional and trained singers started lending their voices to be lip synced by actors who were not good singers. A beginning was made by actor-singers like Rajkumari Dubey and Amirbai Karnataki who either gave up acting or reduced their acting commitments to concentrate mainly on playback singing. Around the same period, radio singers like G M Durrani, Shamshad Begum, Zohrabai Ambalewaali and radio singers/musicians like Khan Mastana, S D Batish and Rafique Ghaznavi also started lending their voices to actors.

Soon film producers realised that the gramophone records of songs rendered by trained and professional singers sold out like hot cake swhich was an additional source of revenue for them. The stock of the handful of playback singers of that time went skyhigh when the songs of films like ‘Khazaanchi’ (1941), ‘Khandaan’ (1942), ‘Kismet’ (1943), ‘Rattan’ (1944) became very popular with the masses. The film industry felt the need to search for trained singers who could be used as playback singers. The easiest way of searching for prospective playback singers for films at that time was to consider singers whose voices ere heard on All India Radio.

In the last couple of months, I have been going through past issues of fortnightly bulletins that are available on line, namely ‘The Indian Listener’ of the All India Radio (AIR) from 1936 to 1950. Daily programmes of the various stations of AIR are listed in it . Browsing of the pages of the Bulletin has revealed that most of the popular playback singers of Hindi cinema of the 1940s had their origins as radio singers on AIR. Take AIR, Lahore, for example. Shamshad Begum started singing on AIR Lahore in 1937, followed by Noor Jehan in 1939, Zeenat Begum, Naseem Akhtar and Naseem Begum in 1940, Surinder Kaur, Mohammed Rafi, Dilshad Begum, Munawwar Sultana, Iqbal Begum in 1943 etc.

Zohrabai Ambalewali and Shamshad Begum had shifted their base from Lahore to Mumbai in the late 1930s and early 1940s, respectively while Zeenat Begum shifted to Mumbai in 1944. All these three playback singers gave some tough competition to Mumbai-based Rajkumari Dubey and Amirbai Karnataki. There were many other radio singers attached to AIR Lahore, like Munawwar Sultana, Dilshad Begum, Naseem Akhtar, Naseem Begum, Iqbal Begum, Rashida Begum, Bahar Begum, Mohammed Rafi etc. Most of them made their debuts as playback singers around middle of 1940s. There were also the radio singers from AIR, Delhi, Mumbai, Lucknow and Kolkata etc. Some of them became playback singers too. For example, Zohrabai Ambalewali, G M Durrani, Khan Mastana, Geeta Roy, Mohantara Talpade, Sitara Kanpuri, Utpala Sen, Kalyani Das and many more,

I am very fond of the voices of playback singers Dilshad Begum, Munawwar Sultana and Nazira Begum. Unfortunately, their playback singing careers did not take off despite having very good voices for the singing of film songs. The total numbers of identified songs rendered by them since their debut totaled 27, 30 and 6 respectively. What could be reasons that they did not succeed in their playback singing career?

Neither of the three seem to have pursued the playback singing career seriously. They confined their playback singing career mostly to films produced at Lahore or with Lahore-based music directors like Pandit Amarnath, G A Chishti, Lachhiram Tomar and lesser-known music directors like Inayat Hussain, K S Sagar and Master Mohan. Probably, they did not wish to travel out of Lahore for song recordings say, in Mumbai. Most of the films for which they sang were not from the top banners. To add to their woes, due to partition, some of the films produced during 1946-47 were either remained unreleased or had released after inordinate delays.

The Blog has so far covered the melodious voices of Lahore’s lesser-known playback singers, Munawwar Sultana (11), Dilshad Begum (12) and Nazira Begum (1). I am presenting today, a melodious song from the film ‘Chupke Chupke’ (1948) sung by one of the lesser known playback singers from Lahore. The song is a ghazal, ‘apne dil mein pyaar ki duniya basa kar loot gaye’ which is set to music by S D Batish. There were two lyricists – Tufail Hoshiyarpuri and Wakar Pandey. But individual distributions of the songs among the lyricists are not available.

It is learnt that the label of 78 RPM gramophone record of the song does not mentione the name of the singer. Some on-line websites have mentioned the name of the singer as Iqbal Bano. I have some doubt about Iqbal Bano being the singer of the song on two counts. First, the singing voice in the song under discussion does not sound to match with that of Iqbal Bano. Second, Iqbal Bano was born sometime in 1935. At the time of the recording of the song which could be as early as 1946 (I suspect the film was the victim of partition and its released got delayed to 1948), Iqbal Bano’s age was around 12 years. I wrote to Girdharilal Vishwakarma ji, an expert in identifying the singers of Hindi film songs especially of 1930s and 1940s. He replied that Jayraman of RMIM Group has identified the singer of the song as Nazira Begum and he agrees with him. So, for the time being, Nazira Begum has been accredited as the playback singer of the song under discussion.

This song proves that Nazira Begum had a very melodious voice. She has rendered the indentified songs in only 4 films, out of which three films remained unreleased – ‘Rustam Aur Sohrab (1940s), ‘Pardesi Baalam’ (1940s) and ‘Basant Panchami’ (1940s).

Audio Clip:

Song-Apne dil mein pyaar ki duniya basa kar lut gaye (Chupke Chupke)(1948) Singer-Nazeera Begam, MD-S D Batish


apne dil mein pyaar ki
duniya basa kar lut gaye
gair nikle hum jinhen
apna bana kar lut gaye
apne dil mein pyaar ki

zindagi ki har khushi
karwat badal kar rah gayi
zindagi ki har khushi
karwat badal kar rah gayi
ek wafa na aashna hai se
dil laga kar lut gaye
apne dil mein pyaar ki

kya khabar
iss mohabbat ki haqeeqat hai fareb
kya khabar
iss mohabbat ki haqeeqat hai fareb
pyaar ne dhokha diya
dhokhe mein aa kar lut gaye
apne dil mein pyaar ki

shaakh thak wo jal gayi
kisi ka apna aashiyaan
shaakh thak wo jal gayi
kisi ka apna aashiyaan
apne dil ki aag se
dil ko jala kar lut gaye
apne dil mein pyaar ki

kya kare….n
jaa kar kisi se
badnaseebi ka gila aa aa aaa
is dil-e-betaab ki
is dil-e-betaab ki
baaton mein aa kar lut gaye
apne dil mein pyaar ki

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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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