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

Posts Tagged ‘Vasant Desai


This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, 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.

This article is a tribute to an actor whom I started admiring for his acting calibre only a couple of years back. He became a star actor without having any godfather in Hindi film industry. During his filmy career of less than 15 years (1934-48), he donned the different kind of roles, mostly in negative shades, in around 30 films most of which became box office hits. Had there been a concept of super star in his days, he would have been the one among K L Saigal, Motilal, Surendra etc. The actor is Chandra Mohan and today, July 24, 2017 happens to be his 111th birth anniversary.

During my younger days, the only information I knew from words of mouth about Chandra Mohan was that he was the most handsome actor of his time. Even until a couple of years back, my awareness about him was restricted to his being from a Kashmiri Pandit family, about his filmography, watching him in VCD of films like ‘Pukaar’ (1939), ‘Roti’ (1942), ‘Humayun’ (1945) and ‘Shaheed’ (1948). Each of his roles in these films impressed me of his acting skill, the dialogue delivery and the expressions.

Chandra Mohan rarely got opportunity to work as hero in a conventional sense in his 30 odd films. Even in the films like ‘Bharosa’ (1940) and ‘Apna Ghar’ (1942) in which he was in the lead roles, he had some shades of negative characters like a seducer of his best friend’s wife and an autocratic husband, respectively. It is said that his facial features and cat eyes always created the shades of villain in him. His eyes were so powerful that even his innocuous smiles gave an impression of villainous smiles.

During the last two years or so when I was more into songs of the films of 1940s, I became aware of some of the important film personalities of that era and one of them was Chandra Mohan. I had read an interview of him taken by Hyacinth, a name under which Susheela Rani Patel wrote articles in ‘Filmindia’ magazines (November 1941). The interview was taken on the eve of the release of his film ‘Roti’ (1942). This was also a period when his career was at its peak. The interview gave me an impression of Chandra Mohan being a short tempered person, a self-centred egoistic man and a man of strong likes and dislikes.

Recently, I came across a moving obituary on Chandra Mohan written by Khorshed Dhondy, a film journalist who knew Chandra Mohan personally. The article appeared in April 1949 issue of SOUND Magazine, (Courtesy: Professor Surjit Singh’s Website). After reading the article, I had a different impression of Chandra Mohan – a kind hearted man, helped needy persons anonymously, a spend thrift during financially good times but accepted the life as it came in bad times. He was not arrogant but his frank talks may have given that impression.

Chandra Mohan Wattal (24/07/1906 – 02/04/1949) was born in Narsinghpur (presently in MP) in a Kashmiri Pandit family. His grandfather was the Diwan of Karauli State (now in Rajasthan) and his father was a member of the darbaar of Maharaja of Gwalior. Chandra Mohan lost his mother when he was a child. He was brought up by his maternal grandmother at Narsinghpur. His grandmother pampered him so much that he had become a spoilt child. It is not known whether he completed his high school.

Sometime in the 1930, after his father’s death, Chandra Mohan realised that his views and his grandparents views were poles apart. So he ran away from his house and reached Delhi. After changing job many times, he joined a film distribution company at Delhi at a monthly salary of Rs.35/-. The job entailed travelling for meeting film producers for negotiating terms for their film distributions.

On one such assignment, Chandra Mohan travelled to Kolhapur to discuss with the owners of Prabhat Film Company for negotiating the terms for distribution of their film ‘Sairandri’ (1933). V Shantaram saw in him the artistic potential – a handsome young man with his blue-greenish eyes which spoke more than his voice. He offered him a contract for the film which he refused. However, when Baburao Pendharkar left Prabhat, Chandra Mohan was asked to reconsider his decision. This time, Chandra Mohan met V Shantaram in Poona (Pune) and accepted the offer at a monthly salary of Rs.75/-. Thus he got his first role of a fanatic priest in Prabhat’s ‘Amrit Manthan (1934).

Chandra Mohan’s role in ‘Amrit Manthan’ (1934) was very much appreciated by both the cinegoers and the film critics. With his very first film, he had become a star. Thereafter, he worked for Prabhat’s ‘Dharmatma’ (1935) as an evil priest, in ‘Amar Jyoti’ (1936) as a tyrannical minister, and in ‘Wahan’ (1937) as autocratic Aryan king. Sometime in 1936, Chandra Mohan had differences with Shantaram over his remuneration which had remained the same despite the box office successes of his three films in a row. So he left Prabhat and joined Huns Pictures of Master Vinayak in 1937 on profit sharing basis.

After completing ‘Jwaala’ (1938), he quit Huns Pictures and joined Sohrab Modi’s Minerva Movietone. He got the role of Mughal Emperor Jehangir in ‘Pukaar’ (1939). His role had created so much impression that Maharaja of Kashmir, Hari Singh who was a close friend of Chandra Mohan, used to receive him personally at his royal palace and address him as Jehangir. In Minerva’s ‘Bharosa’ (1940), his role as a seducer of his friend’s wife was critically appreciated in the film’s review in ‘Filmindia’.

Keeping with his temperament, Chandra Mohan left Minerva Movietone too after doing just two films and became a free-lancer. During his free-lancing phase, he had done a double role in negative character in ‘Geeta’ (1940) – as Durga Khote’s husband and her son. His role of a ruthless businessman in ‘Roti’ (1942) and an autocratic husband in ‘Apna Ghar’ (1942) who ‘conveys more from his actions than the words’ were well appreciated. In ‘Shakuntala’ (1943), his portrayal of role as King Dushyant had many shades of emotions.

The World War II period (1939-45) brought significant speculative gains for businessmen. Some of them channelled the money in film productions. During this time, the remunerations of the star actors went up significantly. Chandra Mohan was one of the major beneficiaries of this trend as he did nearly 20 films during this period. According to a film journalist I referred to earlier, Chandra Mohan earned as much as Rs.18 lakhs during this period which was a big sum at that time.

However, Chandra Mohan’s good earnings came at a cost which was reflected in his career later. During the boom, he had accepted roles in the films of all sorts, some of which flopped at the box offices. During this period, he tried his hand in producing a film ‘Jhankar’ (1942) in partnership with his close friend M Kumar. This film too flopped at the box office.

Once the war was over, there was a slump in business activities which also got reflected in the film industry. However, keeping with his temperament, Chandra Mohan would not lower his remuneration nor would he approach film production banners for roles. The result was that he did not get any films during 1946 and 1947. During this period, whatever he had earned was majorly lost in gambling like horse races which he was very fond of. Also his lavish life style and partying with his close friends continued until all his earnings were exhausted. He had to sell his personal belongings like cars, race horses etc to maintain his routine expenses.

It was during this period that Chandra Mohan was afflicted with some kind of mental illness (probably depression) resulting in losing his mental balance. It is said that during this period, he used to get hallucinations quite often. It is during this time, he became extremely religious person as against the atheist earlier. He spent whatever little money he had for going on pilgrimage all over India and visiting places of all faiths.

In the film industry, when the chips are down for an artist, even his close friends desert him. Chandra Mohan was lucky that he had some close friends like Motilal, M Kumar, Ulhas, Ranjan Haksar who were genuinely attached to him irrespective of his financial conditions. They used to visit his house in Churchgate periodically to inquire about his well being.

I guess that the moral support (perhaps, discreetly financial too) which Chandra Mohan got from his close friends during his difficult times might have brought him to normalcy. After about 2 years of hiatus, he got an important role in Filmistan’s ‘Shaheed’ (1948). His stunning performance as a duty bound Deputy Commissioner whose son (Dilip Kumar) has become a revolutionary, was as memorable as that of Dilip Kumar in ‘Shakti’ (1982). His monologue in a court scene where, for the first time, he supports his son for his actions, is unforgettable. He also acted in Prakash Picutres’ ‘Raam Baan’ (1948) in the role of Ravan and ‘Dukhiyaari’ (1948) etc.

Unfortunately, Chandra Mohan’s second innings was short lived. On the morning of April 2, 1949, he breathed his last due to heart attack after a short illness of about 15 days. Baburao Patel, editor of ‘Filmindia’ wrote in his tribute to Chandra Mohan – ‘the lambs of the day can never reach the stature of the lion that died’.

Chandra Mohan’s untimely death was one of the main reasons for further delay of K Asif’s magnum opus, ‘Mughal-e-Azam’ (1960) in which he was playing the role of Emperor Akbar. Some reels of the film was already shot.

Coming to the song for the occasion, from the VCDs of his films I have watched, I could not find any song which Chandra Mohan had lip synced on the screen. At last, I have settled for a background song picturised on him. The song is ‘Na Jaane Kahaan Ka Ye Jaadu Kiya Hai’ from the film ‘Shakuntala’ (1943). The singer of the song is not identified. My guess is that the singer is Khan Mastana.

There were 13 songs in the film written by Deewan Sharar and Ratan Piya. However, the song under discussion has not been identified as to which of the two lyricists had written the song. My take is that the song may have been written by Deewan Sharar as I find that 8 songs for which Ratan Piya have been accredited, have pure Hindi lyrics whereas the song under discussion have words like ‘adaayen’ ‘nighaayen’, ‘jahaan’ ‘jaam’ which a purist Hindi poet would generally avoid. Vasant Desai composed music for all the songs. Six songs from the film have been covered in the Blog.

‘Shakuntala’ (1943) was the first film produced and directed by V Shantaram after he left Prabhat films and set up Rajkamal Kala Mandir . The star cast included Jaishree, Chandra Mohan, Nimbalkar, Zohra, Ameena, Raja Pandit, Nana Palsikar, Shantarin etc. The film was a box office hit. It ran for 104 weeks in Swastik theatre in Bombay (Mumbai).

Interestingly, for his first film under his own banner, V Shantaram chose Chandra Mohan for the role of King Dushyant in the film despite their earlier disagreement in 1937 because of which Chandra Mohan had left Prabhat Films in 1937. Chandra Mohan had acknowledged in his interview that V Shantaram was the best director among the directors he worked with.


Song – Na Jaane Kahaan Ka Ye Jaadu Kiya Hai (Shakuntala) (1943) Singer – Unidentified Male Voice, Lyrics – [Unattributed], MD – Vasant Desai

Lyrics

na jaane kahaan kaa ye
jaadoo kiyaa hai
kisi ne mere dil mein
ghar kar liyaa aa hai
na jaane kahaan kaa ye
jaadoo kiyaa hai
kisi ne mere dil mein
ghar kar liyaa aa hai

wo baanki adaayen
wo meethi nighaahen aen
wo baanki adaayen
wo meethi nighaahen
chale…en
chale phir wahaan par
jahaan dil diyaa hai
jahaan dil diyaa hai
kisi ne mere dil mein
ghar kar liyaa aa hai

inhin ne kiyaa aa mast
saare jahaan ko o
inhin ne kiyaa aa mast
saare jahaan ko o
jin aankhon kaa..aa
jin aankhon kaa
ik jaam hamne piya hai
hamne piya hai
kisi ne
mere dil mein
ghar kar liyaa aa hai
na jaane kahaan kaa ye
jaadoo kiyaa hai
kisi ne mere dil mein
ghar kar liyaa aa hai

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

ना जाने कहाँ का ये जादू किया है
किसी ने मेरे दिल में घर कर लिया है

वो बाँकी अदाएं
मीठी निगाहें
वो बाँकी अदाएं
मीठी निगाहें
चले॰॰एन
चलें फिर वहाँ पर
जहां दिल दिया है
किसी ने मेरे दिल में घर कर लिया है

इन्हीं ने किया मस्त सारे जहां को॰॰
इन्हीं ने किया मस्त सारे जहां को॰॰
जिन आँखों का॰॰
जिन आँखों का इक जाम हमने पिया है
हमने पिया है
किसी ने
मेरे दिल में
घर कर लिया है
ना जाने कहाँ का ये जादू किया है
किसी ने मेरे दिल में घर कर लिया है

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This article is written by Raja, 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.

Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday, dear atul-song-a-day blog
Happy  birthday to you

🙂

Yes, it’s that special day of the year again. It’s our blog’s happy happy birthday. It was born on 19th July 2008, so today it completes 9 years. And we, wherever we are in the world, are definitely not going to let the occasion go by without celebration.  Maybe we don’t have cakes and candles, but we have enough blog handles. 🙂 (Ok, admittedly, that was a terrible one!).
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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.

Wishing our Dear Atul ji, a very Happy Birthday. May this day be celebrated on this blog many, many, many more times.
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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.

“Jeewan Yatra”(1946) was directed by Vinayak for Rajkamal Kala mandir, Bombay. This social film had Nayan Tara, Yakub, Baburao Pendhhrkar, Pratima Devi, Lata Mangeshkar, Shantarin, Sunalini Devi, Mehar Sultana, Sundar Bai, Dixit, Chandrakant, Daamu Anna Mavlankar, Nimbalkar, Parshuram, Kamal, Janki Das, Vikas etc in it.
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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.

“Jhaansi Ki Raani”(1953) which deals with the story of the famous Rani of Jhaansi, was produced and directed by Sohrab Modi fpr Minerva Movietone, Bombay. This movie had Mehtab (in title role), Sohrab Modi, Mubarak, Ulhas, ram Singh, Sapru, anil Kishore, Baby Shikha, Kamalkant, Michael Shea, Marconi, Nayampalli, Gloria Gasper, Shakeela, Dar Kashmiri (Jeewan), Chaube ji, Srinath, Burhanuddin, Jagdish Kamal, Baby Feroza, Bonani Chaudhary, Master Salim, Raja nandlal, Nandu Khote, Kabeer, Bhoop Kishore, Homi Sethna, Jerry, Chitralekha, Anant Joshi etc in it.
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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.

Today’s song is from the film Sheesh Mahal-1950. It was a Minerva Movietone production directed by Sohrab Modi. Vasant Desai was the music director. There were nine songs in the film, which were penned by four Lyricists.
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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.

“Anand Bhawan”(1953) was directed by S M Yusuf for Aina Pictures, Bombay. This movie had Manhar Desai, Nigar Sultana, Ramayan Tiwari, Trilok Kapoor, Durga Khote, Kate Sethi etc in it.
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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.

“Dahej”(1950) was produced and directed by V Shantaram for Rajkamal Kalamandir, Bombay. The movie had Karan dewan, Jayshree, Prithviraj, Lalita Pawar, Ulhas, K Date, Mumtaz Shanti, Lata rao etc in it.
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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.

“Dahej”(1950) was produced and directed by V Shantaram for Rajkamal Kalamandir, Bombay. The movie had JKaran dewan, Jayshree, Prithviraj, Lalita Pawar, Ulhas, K Date, Mumtaz Shanti, Lata rao etc in it.
Read more on this topic…


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.

“Nai Taaleem”(1949) is one of the most obscure moveies of all time. Apart from its name and year of release, very little information is available about this mvie. HFGK does not give any information about the number of songs in this movie.
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What is this blog all about

This blog discusses Bollywood songs of yesteryears. Every song has a brief description, followed by a video link, and complete lyrics of the song.

This is a labour of love, where “new” songs are added every day, and that has been the case for more than nine years. This blog has over 13500 song posts by now.

This blog is active and online for over 3300 days since its beginning on 19 july 2008.

Total number of songs posts discussed

13579

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Movies with all their songs covered =1015
Total Number of movies covered =3721

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Blog Start date: 19 july 2008

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