Posts Tagged ‘Hema Malini’

Ten of my Favourite Manoj Kumar songs

July 24, 2010

As this veteran actor celebrates his 73rd birthday today, here’s wishing him a very very Happy birthday!

He started his career as a romantic hero. Manoj Kumar’s image as the patriotic hero started with the 1965 film Shaheed, based on the life of Bhagat Singh. After the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri asked him to create a film based on the popular slogan Jai Jawan Jai Kissan. The result was Kumar’s magnum opus and his directorial debut, Upkaar (1967). Upkaar was a hit and won Kumar his first Filmfare Best Director Award.  He then went on to direct and act in lots of other movies which earned him the name of  Mr. Bharat.

Harikishan Giri Goswami, better known as Manoj Kumar, was a big admirer of  Dilip Kumar,  so much that he decided to name himself Manoj Kumar after Dilip’s character in Shabnam (1949).

He was blessed with good looks and an ability to act and direct well. I have been very fond of him but have always liked him more in his pre-patriotic era. That doesn’t mean I have anything against his patriotic movies. They were all very good but I’m making it a point not to include many songs from those movies, and even if I do, I will leave out the patriotic ones for now. Will do a separate post on patriotism some other time, may be around Independence day. For now, I’m concentrating only on romantic songs of his that I like the most with one single exception – the first song below.

1. Mera rang de basanti chola (Shaheed, 1965) :  When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.  Live your life in such a manner that when you die the world cries and you rejoice –  this song just illustrates the saying. Manoj Kumar as Bhagat Singh has etched such an indelible impression in my memory that I just can’t find anybody else as good as him in the role. May be it’s because it’s one of the first movies of Manoj Kumar that I saw and the very first one of Bhagat Singh, during the good old Doordarshan days when they used to telecast patriotic movies on Independance Day and Republic Day. Everything about this song gives me goose flesh…esp the part where Manoj Kumar says : Hum gale milna chahate hai, ab ke bichde na jaane kab mile. And the way they embrace each other is so touching. Having said earlier that I like him better in romantic roles, I would have loved to list down Jogi hum toh lut gaye tere pyaar mein which I totally love, but I didn’t for 2 reasons – 1. I couldn’t help myself from not including Mera rang de basanti, 2. It doesn’t have enough of Manoj Kumar to classify it as his song. Each song of this movie, be it Sarfaroshi ki tamanna, Aye watan, Pagdi sambhal is absolutely brilliant and very emotional as well.

2. Gore gore chand se mukh par (Anita, 1967) : How could I not like Manoj Kumar sitting on a branch of a tree singing this paean to one of my favourite actresses, Sadhana. Though I don’t like her make-up much in this particular song, I love the room she is in! A beautiful song. Mukesh has sung some very nice and very romantic songs for Manoj Kumar. I could actually have done a combined post for Mukesh and Manoj Kumar but for all these years I have ignored him and failed to recognise his genius, Mukesh deserves a separate post just to himself, which is coming up soon.

3. Chodkar tere pyaar ka daaman (Woh Kaun Thi, 964) : This movie had some amazing songs, majority of  them rendered by Lata. But when we come to Manoj Kumar, where even he gets to lip-synch some of the song, this song tops my list. He was a very good-looking man. And this song is such a delicious treat to the eyes – Manoj Kumar and Helen both looking their best!  Manoj Kumar in black-n-white movies, I just can’t get enough of him. Lag ja gale is and will always remain my favourite from this movie and as I already had it in one of my recent posts, I am skipping it for the moment. And Naina barse is something I am saving up for some other occasion.

4. Door reh kar na karo baatein (Amanat, 1971) : One of the main reasons behind me doing this post. Ok…that’s not entirely true, I didn’t actually need an excuse to do this post. The fact that I actually like Manoj Kumar was more than enough  in itself and to add to it  that he featured in some of my favourite songs. This is a very passionate song,  one’s of my all-time favourites – simple lyrics, soft music, flawless voice and picturised on two very good looking people whom I am very fond of.

5. Chaand si mehbooba hogi (Himalaya Ki Godh Mein, 1965) : I will never forget Mala Sinha’s name in this movie – Phulwa! Thanks to the flower Manoj makes and writes “wa” beside it on the stone in the beginning of this song. It’s a lovely song – beautifully written, rendered and very well composed.  I am not very fond of the movie itself as such, inspite of Mala Sinha and Manoj Kumar but I love this song – probably the best thing in the movie. Manoj Kumar finds his dream girl in Mala Sinha, the innocent (though loud) village belle. And he  looked very cute in it, not just in this song but in the entire movie…a doctor educated abroad who lands up in a village and is in complete awe of the rural superstitions initially but eventually decides to stay back there and help healing the villagers instead of going back to in the city and setting up a clinic.

6. Main na bhoolunga (Roti Kapada aur Makaan, 1974) – An unforgettable melody…..
Samay ki dhara mein umar beh jaani hai
jo ghadi jee lenge, wahi reh jaani hai
main ban jaau saans aakhri tu jeewan ban jaaye
Jeewan se saanso ka rishta main na bhoolungi….

Maang se sindoor ka rishta…Mandir se pooja ka rishta….
Mesmerising lyrics…very touching. Beautifully and emotionally sung by Mukesh and Lata Mangeshkar and amazingly portrayed by Zeenat and Manoj and Shashi. And it fits so well into the story, it more or less sums up a part of the story. This movie won Manoj Kumar his second Filmfare Best Director Award.

7. Bol mere taqdeer mein (Hariyali Aur Raasta, 1962) : I watched this film when I was 15 and I don’t know what I liked so much about it…I somehow could never forget this story of Shankar, Shobhna and Rita. Waise toh all the songs are good – Yeh hariyali aur yeh raasta, Teri yaad dil se bhulane chala hoon, Ibteda ishq mein hum, Lakh taare aasman mein but Bol meri taqdeer mein kya hai has always remained my favourite. One of the most romantic songs ever…and that too with quite a philosophical note to it – jeevan ke do pehlo hai hariyali aur raasta. After Shaheed, this was the second movie of his that I saw, followed by Dus Numberi. No wonder I ended up liking him so much!

8. Paththar ke sanam (Paththar Ke Sanam, 1967) : A hunk with two lovely ladies and a couple of great songs….I had to see this film. Though I didn’t like the film much, I totally love the songs – Mehboob mere, Tauba yeh matwali chaal, Ki nahin hai, Bata doon kya laana or the title track – all of them are amazing! I don’t think Rafi has sung many songs for Manoj Kumar but the few that he has are superb! Be it this or Door rehkar na karo baat.

9. Ke duniya ek numbari to main dus numbari (Dus Numbari, 1976) : It’s such an entertaining film. Though it’s been a quite some time since I saw this film, I remember liking it when I saw it. This used to be Sony entertainment Televisions favourite movie a decade ago, they used to air it almost every fortnight.  And for once I saw Manoj Kumar so stylish (love his shades and his outfits in it) and it was so refreshing to see him do a role like this for a change.

10. Zindagi ki na toote ladi (Kranti, 1981) : I grew up listening to this song and watching it almost every week on Rangoli and Chitrahaar. This song itself was intriguing enough and the curiosity of seeing both Diliip kumar and Manoj Kumar together was too much to resist. So when this movie was finally aired on Doordarshan I just couldn’t afford to miss it. Though sad at times, from what I remember it was an entertaining package – action, drama, emoshun, good music, suspense, brothers separated in childhood, princess being kidnapped and what not. Un aankhon ka hansna bhi kya jin aakhon mein paani na ho, woh jawani jawani nahin jiski koi kahani na ho….lakh gehra ho saagar toh kya pyaar se kuch bhi gehra nahin, dil ki deewane har mauj par ho aasmano pehra nahin….amazing lyrics. Apart from Raj Kapoor Mukesh sang quite a lot of songs for Manoj Kumar. It’s interesting to see his son, Nitin Mukesh singing for Manoj Kumar here with Lata Mangeshkar.

There are so many other songs of his that I like from Upkaar, Do Badan, Shor, Aadmi, Neel Kamal, Purab Aur Paschim, Saawan Ki Ghata, Phoolon Ki Sej, Banarasi Thug etc….hopefully I’ll get to include all these songs in some list or the other over a period of time.

Thinking of his movies, I just can’t get Clerk out of my mind – few scenes in particular…For those of you who haven’t seen the movie, check this out –

One of the most ridiculous movies and one of those few movies which I couldn’t sit through the whole way. But there were quite a few scenes like this in it. Such scenes are entertaining and good to laugh at, esp when you can just see them instead of having to put up with the entire film! 😉

Here’s wishing Manoj Kumar health and long life on this day and always!!!

Ten of my Favourite Rajendra Kumar Songs

July 12, 2010

I know I was supposed to do a post on Neetu Singh but was busy yesterday the whole day. And though none of the teams I was supporting reached the World Cup finals, I ended up watching the finals as an obligation. So didn’t have time. And today, being Rajendra Kumar’s death anniversary, I wanted to dedicate this post to him.

He neither had the good-looks, nor a great physique….he’s not the typical hero material from any angle, but there’s something very charming about him that I adore.

Wikipedia states : The 1960s saw Rajendra Kumar rise like no other star had risen, and the voice of Mohammad Rafi played biggest role in it. That doesn’t take away the fact that he was a very good actor. But the songs of his film in Mohammed Rafi`s voice used to become mega hits giving movies a fine opening, and there was a time when every film starring him was a silver jubilee hit. There were times when he had six or seven films running in their silver jubilee weeks at the same time. It was a success that was unbelievable and Rajendra Kumar was soon known as “Jubilee Kumar”. He was considered a golden boy for the movie producers in the sense that he was the actor who could recover the producers’ money in a matter of few weeks.

When Rafi and Rajendra Kumar combination had such beautiful meoldies, how could I resist from not doing this post. So here are my ten favourite Rajendra Kumar songs, all from the movies that I have seen and in no particular order –

1. Aye nargise mastaana (Arzoo, 1965) : I like this song more for Sadhna than for Rajendra Kumar. But when it’s Rafi singing, it doesn’t really matter who’s on screen. What a way to flirt!!! Love his “shikayats” and Rajendra Kumar looks cute reciting them. It’s a very beautifully shot song with great lyrics by Hasrat Jaipuri and music by Shankar-Jaikishen.  All the songs of this movie were very popular and very romantic, be it,  Chhalke teri aankhon se sharaab aur jyada, Ae phoolon ki raani, Aji rooth kar ab kahan jaiyega. These songs give a different meaning to love all together, hai na? And compare them to the songs of today… truly Love – Aaj Kal.

2. Tumse izhaar-e-haal kar baithe (Mere Mehboob, 1963) : This was another movie with such amazing songs. I know Mere mehboob tujhe meri mohabbat ki kasam is more popular but I somehow like this and Ae husn zara jaag tujhe ishq jagaye better. Sadhna looks drop-dead gorgeous…no wonder he keeps singing one lovely song after another for her! All these songs are so full of emotions which one can feel as well as see. The onscreen pair – truly lajawaab and the voice very intoxicating. It’s so subtle and sweet. Love Rajendra Kumar in it. Though I mentioned above that he wasn’t blessed with good looks, but I do find him pretty handsome at times, like in this song.

3. Bura maan gaye (Aayee Milan Ki Bela, 1964) : I love each and every song in this movie…each one is a gem – be it Tum kamseen ho, Main pyaar ka deewana, O Sanam tere ho gaye hum, Tumko hamari umar lag jaye or the title track itself. And to choose one song from this one album is extremely difficult.  There’s something very innocent (and romantic of course!) about all the songs in this movie. And this song has the playful factor to it as well. Listen to his complaints – they are so sweet…plight of an aashiq!

4. Teri pyaari pyaari surat ko (Sasural, 1961) : What an amazing song!!! And the way he sings Chashme Baddoor is simply awesome! This song never fails to brighten up my mood – it has such lovely lyrics that you can’t help but smile, beautiful music that compliments the feel of the song, the rendition is priceless and it’s picturised so beautifully. But in addition to this there’s a funny incident associated with this song. My friends had given me a CD of Rafi’s songs for my birthday during my college days. One Sunday afternoon, I was sitting in my room in hostel and  listening to it. One of my Telugu speaking friends came to my room (she couldn’t understand Hindi) and asked me : You are in a different world altogether when you listen to these songs…What’s so special about them? I started raving about the lyrics, music,rendition, picturisation, situation in which the song is sung in the movie, blah blah….I went on non-stop for a while, I was kind of marketing the song. After listening to me for so long, even she wanted to listen to it. And she wanted me to translate the lyrics for her. This song was playing then. Yun na akeli phira karo…., dekha na karo tum aaina….., nikla na karo tum raho par…At the end of it she got up and said : “He’s forbidding her from doing everything…what the hell does he want her to do???!!!” and walked out.

I didn’t know how to react to it for a while and then I was literally rolling down with laughter. But I didn’t have an answer to her question even after I recovered.  So everytime I hear this song, I think of that afternoon.

5. Yeh mera prem patra padh kar (Sangam, 1964) : This is one of Rajendra Kumar’s signature songs. It’s still a rage to this day, I can only imagine how popular this must have been back then. I somehow didn’t like the movie much – had seen it long ago, don’t know if I will feel differently about it if I watch it now. But I like this song. It was a part of my Dad’s collection and have literally grown up listening to it. So it has that nostalgic feel to it.

6. Chehre pe giri zulfen (Suraj, 1966) : Again, Baaharon phool barsaao is more popular. Not that I don’t like it but I like this better esp the way Gustakhi maaf is sung. Dad had a cassette that had Suraj songs on Side A and Sasural on Side B ( I think it was a T-series). He had lots of them but these were among his top favourites and used to play them more often. So these songs somehow manage to take me back in time. Rajendra Kumar does live upto these songs in his own way. He has a funny way of dancing but it kind of suits him.

7. Madhuban khushboo deta hai (Saajan Bina Suhagan, 1978) : I haven’t been able to figure out what exactly it is that I like about it song. But somehow, I feel good listening to this song – must be the inspirational lyrics! And oh yes, I do like Yesudas’s voice as well.

8. Dheere dheere bol koi sunna le (Gora aur Kala, 1972 ) : After battling a lot over Ek na ek din yeh kahani banegi and Dheere dheere bol, I finally chose the latter to add more vareity to the post. I have been concentrating mostly on songs sung by Rafi so far. I think I should give a chance to other singers as well. So it’s Mukesh this time singing for Rajendra Kumar. Both Hema and Rajendra look so good and so royal in this song. And they share a great chemistry as well. All in all a very romantic duet.

9.  Palkon ke peeche se jo tumne (Talash, 1969) : A very pretty song filmed against a beautiful backdrop. I had first heard this song on Vividh Bharati. It was much later that I actually saw the video. There’s this innocence and sharmila-pan about it which I adore – something that one could sense just listening to the song without even having to see the video.

10. Kaun hai jo sapno mein aaya (Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan, 1967) : Kaun hai jo sapno mein aaya, Kahan chaldiye idhar toh aao, Sachcha hai gar pyaar, unse mili nazar, Meri aankhon ki nindiya, Mere tumhare beech mein…..once again, all the songs are superb. Though I like Elvis Presley – the man himself and his songs, I find the Hindi version of this song more lively than the original Marguerita. Thanks to Rafi’s singing and Rajendra Kumar’s onscreen presence! This was the first Rajendra Kumar movie that I saw. And I had really enjoyed it as a kid.

RIP Jubilee Kumar!

Palkon Ki Chhaon Mein (1977)

June 16, 2010

Ravi (Rajesh Khanna) is a well educated guy but hasn’t got a job yet. Unlike others, he doesn’t find any job big or small…he just takes up anything that comes his way. The movie opens showing him delivering Newspapers at people’s door – but the job is not permanent. He likes painting and usually makes paintings that depict village life…on being asked by his friend he says city life is very mechanical and he doesn’t like it.

When his Maa ji (Pratima Devi) sees one of his paintings she says that the house in his painting is so much like his dadaji’s house. But alas, his father had to  leave it and come to the city because of sarkari naukari.

Saying that she leaves for post office to collect her husband’s pension but he stops her. He goes to the Post Office instead.

At the Post Office, Om Shivpuri is interviewing people for the post of a Post Man at Sitapur and gets so frustrated talking to people who come for the interview.
When Ravi comes to collect his father’s pension, he takes it for granted that he’s one of the interview candidates and starts asking him questions. He asks Ravi for his age and Ravi says : As per certificates, it’s 21 but that’s not correct.
Om : How can you say that?
Ravi : Because noone knows which year I was born in…Mom says there was a flood in the village the year I was born, as though I wouldn’t have been born had it not been for the floods. She also says, I was born after 2 years since she got married and there was a drought that year.
This part is very interesting. Ravi, unaware that he’s being interviewed answers with such carefree attitude. And Om Shivpuri, on the other hand is also pleasantly surprised and enjoys the conversation.
At the end of 5 minutes, Om Shivpuri offers him the job and Ravi gladly takes it up.


Now that he’s an official postman, he comes home in Postman’s uniform and says : Postman….money order. His mom comes to the door, checks the sheet:
Maa : Yeh kaisa moneyorder hai bhai? (What kind of money order is this, Bhai?)
Ravi : Bhai nahin maa, beta kaho beta! (Bhai nahin, call me Beta)
Maa tu toh aise ghabra gayi…daakiya bana, koi daaku thodi na bana…aur phir sarkari naukari hai – rehne ke liye kapda makaan muft aur rotiyaan Manoj Kumar se maang lenge. (You were so worried…I have become a daakia – a postman, not a Daaku. And it’s a government job, I’ll get accomodation and uniform for free…that leaves roti and I can always ask Manoj Kumar for that)
Maa : Woh kaun hai? (Who’s that?)
Ravi : Maa tu picturen nahin dekhti. (Maa, you don’t watch movies)

His mother is worried that he’s going for such a job when he’s so well educated. But he is happy to be employed. So he sets out for Sitapur.  After getting down from the train, he boards Nattu’s (Amjad Khan) Tanga bound for Sitapur.

Existing Post Master explains his job to  him…says his job would also include writing letters for others, reading out their letters etc apart from just delivering them…because not everybody in the village is literate.

Ravi is asked to share his quarters with Raghu Rampuri(Asrani), who’s a unique-piece item. The moment Ravi enters the house Raghu says  : The only two things that are famous from Rampur are – me and chaku (wonder what Laxman had to say abt it :P). And then introduces him as  a poet. When Ravi says that he’s never heard his poems, Raghu says : it’s just that I am ahead of my poems – I became more famous than my poems 😛

Parcel (Rajoo Shrestha) lives with Raghu. He cleans the house and cooks for him, in return Raghu teaches him how to read and write.
Ravi : Kiska ladka hai? (Whose child is he?)
Raghu : Daak khaane ka (Post Office’s…no wonder he’s named Parcel). He lives at the post office, noone knows who his parents are but he loves reading. Maybe he’ll also become a Postman like you when he grows up.

On his first day at work, he goes to the temple in the morning to deliver Panditji’s letter and sees Mohini (Hema Mailin) there.

There’s an old lady in the village, whose son, Rasulla, had joined the Army and gone away… and who never returned back. She’s gone insane waiting to hear from him. She sits guarding a mango tree from other kids in the village. She’s been dying to hear from her son for years and when Ravi comes there and chases the little boys troubling her away, she sees the letters on the carrier of Ravi’s cycle and takes them away saying all those are her son’s letters.

He has to coax her into giving those letters back to him. And then he pulls out a blank paper from the stack of letters and recites : Meri pyaari ammi….pretending to read the content from a letter. And at the end he asks her : Nani, what’s your son’s name? And after she says the name, he ends the letter saying : Tera beta Rasulla.


Then he goes about delivering letters…he goes to a house and  knocks, Mohini opens the door and is delighted to see the Postman…he hands over a letter  –
Ravi : I am new here, had I known this letter was for you,  I would have given it at the temple itself.
Mohini : You are new, that’s why I didn’t ask you if there was any letter for me when I saw you in the temple.
But the letter is not for her, somebody showed him the wrong house and she’s very disappointed.

She, however, guides him to the correct address, Choudhary’s house. His daughter, Chhutki (Farida Jalal) opens the door and talks non-stop that her father is not home with lots of if-else conditions. Finally when she’s done, he gives her the letter and leaves.

Chhutki’s wedding has been fixed and the letter is from her sasural, she’s very excited to know what’s written in it…so she comes to call Mohini so that they both could go somewhere and read the letter. She takes permission from Mohini’s maa (Leela Mishra) and they both leave with an excuse of  fetching water from the well.

She opens the letter, puts the envelope behind on a stone wall surrounding the well and starts reading the letter. But she can’t read properly and can’t figure out what’s written in it…she asks Mohini for help but she can’t read either. She says she would have gone and joined the army if she knew how to read and write.


When they see people coming towards them, she tries to collect the envelope and leave from there, but in a hurry, she misses it and the envelope goes flying down into the well.

There’s a beautiful song here – Allah megh de. The letter finally reaches the Chaudhary and he reads it but is perplexed thinking how the Daakiya could have brought the letter without an envelope, which means no address. Chhutki lies to him saying that the letter was delivered without the envelope. And as though her saying so would help she says : Good that the kept the envelope. Imagine if he had to keep the letter and just give the envelope to us. We would never get to know what’s in the letter.
When Daakiya comes the following morning, Chaudhary is still perplexed wondering about the missing envelope and he asks him if he has come to distribute just the envelopes today. Now, it’s Ravi’s turn to get confused. He’s accused of taking the envelope away. (What could he possible do with it even if he had to take it?) Finally Mohini comes to his rescues and spills the truth to Chaudhary.

Next, he goes searching for Aarti Sharma to give Money order….when he reaches her house, he sees her busy making quilts.She stops her work to chat with him for a while and says that it’s her husband’s pension.

Aazadi ke jung mein saheed hue the – She claims to be an army’s widow and yet she puts sindoor. He’s kind of confused. And finding his puzzled expression very natural, she goes on to explain that she’s Amar suhagan and all the others in the village call her Suhagi didi. She says she waits for this day not because she would get money but for her husband…she feels connected to him in some way and when she puts sindoor she feels that he’s still somewhere around. 

Ravi takes her hand, and takes her thumb impression on the paper before giving her the Pension amount. But she doesn’t keep the money…she sends it for the welfare of other armies who are fighting day and night, protecting the country and ensuring everybody’s safety. At the end he realizes that she’s educated and can converse fluently in English as well. He leaves feeling embarrased for taking her thumb impression instead of asking her to sign.

Ravi sits under a Peepal tree infront of Mohini’s house and sorts his letters. And she awaits a letter herself quite desparately so keeps asking him if there’s a letter for her. Ravi replies to her and continues with his work. 

Mohini (to her cow) : Do you want some water?
Ravi (assuming she’s asking him) : Yes, a glass of water, please.
Mohini : What will a glass of water do, I will have to get a bucket full of water for you.
And then she asks him if he would want some water…to this he replies –
Ravi :  Yes, but not in a bucket.

She goes towards the house and then stops half way through to ask if buttermilk would do. He nods. And she comes with a glass of buttermilk for him.
Mohini :  if I get any letters, do give it to me.
Ravi : Who else would I give it to?
Mohini: Oh I mean, dont give it to Maa.
Ravi : Once bitten twice shy, I would never make that mistake again. I have learnt a lot from Chaudhary saab’s letter episode (Dhoodh ka jala hoon na, dekho chhach ko bhi phook phook ke pee raha hoon).
She behaves pretty mysterious asking about letters so he asks her if she gets letters often.
Mohini : No, but just in case if I get any letters.
Ravi : You wait so much for them, you must have got them earlier too.
Mohini : No, not yet, but…
Ravi : Who is it that you expect to hear from so much?
Mohini : (Little uncomfortably) I am supposed to get a letter form my Mamaji.
And goes away saying she has to give buttermilk to her cow.
Ravi : Buttermilk? To cow?
Mohini : I mean water…don’t know what I am saying today
Ravi (jokingly) : You get so confused, has it ever happened that you kept your food plate infront of the cow and started eating the grass yourself?
She laughs and goes away. 

Ravi sings Daakiya daak laaya as he goes about his work.  He comes home from work very hungry and asks Parcel for food. Raghu gives him water and starts asking about Mohini. The entire village is talking about the two of them now. Ravi confides that he likes Mohini but has no idea how she feels for him. Just then Parcel comes with a sheet of paper and asks Raghu if it’s ok…Raghu after going through it approves of it and asks Parcel to post it. Ravi is confused as to what they both are upto. Raghu explains to him that nobody ever wrote him a letter in his life, so he’s making Parcel write one and post it. He would reply to it on receiving it.

One day on his way back home, Ravi sees Mohini sitting on a tree branch and staring.

He asks her what she’s looking at and she says she was thinking about the armies who were there few months ago for training. She would sit there and look at them for hours together.
Mohini : This area used to be so full of armies some time back and now…
Ravi : And now, let’s both go and do a parade.
Mohini : Who will distribute your letters then?
Ravi : We could ask anybody to do that…what’s the name of that liar friend of yours? Chhutki? Let her go around giving the letters and her father will go behind her with the envelopes 😉
She asks him why he didn’t come and sit under the Peepal tree today to sort his letters and mentions  she was actually waiting for him the whole day.
Ravi : You were waiting for me? or for your mamaji’s letter?
Mohini : Had made daliya today, you come everyday so had kept some for you too.
Ravi : Is it still there or did u give it to ur cow?
Mohini : I have kept some for you.
Ravi : Ok then, I have to go to Suhagi didi’s house now, I’ll come over after that (extremely delighted).

Suhagi has made some quilts and blankets and she gives them to Ravi to send them across to some regiment. Ravi comes to Mohini’s place to have daliya. He barely sits down when Mohini’s cow breaks free and runs away with the rope entangled with Ravi’s cycle. Mohini’s cow running away with Ravi’s cycle – this becomes such a big breaking news and the hottest gossip in the village.


Ravi goes behind the cow and finally brings both the cow and cycle home. But he gets hurt in the process. So Mohini tends to his wounds. She notices Suhagi’s parcel and asks Ravi about it.
Him : She has sent it for the armies.
Her : What if I want to send a parcel to somebody?
Him : You should have his name and regiment address and it will reach him. But…why? You know any fauji?
Her : No, I was just asking.

Rekha makes a special appearance in this dance – Surme wale sainyaan hamaro ji.

After a few days, she meets him by that tree again and takes his measurements for a sweater. He’s very happy and is now sure that she likes him too.

Another day she complains that he never brings a letter for her and then he promises to bring a letter for her the following day.

He goes home that night and sits awake the whole night writing a letter to her – putting down his feelings on paper. When he meets her, he gives her the letter and she’s extremely delighted. Then she shows him the sweater she has knit and asks him to try it. He’s happily trying it out when she looks at the letter and says – now that he has written to me and I have his address, I can send the sweater too.
He is shocked to find out that it’s not for him. All his dreams are shattered and he’s heart is broken…

She then tells him her story – She had met Ravi (Jeetendra), an army officer when his battalion was training near her village, fallen in love with him and had also quietly married him in a temple. But he had to go almost immediately after that and she has never heard of him since. However, she’s sure he’ll return back to her some day.


Now that he knows she’s already married, he decides to help her locate Ravi (Jeetendra). Heartbroken as he is, he cannot help himself from singing a song – Ladkhadane do mujhe. He goes to the town the following morning searching for Ravi (Jeetendra) but with no luck and finally comes back to Sitapur again.

He meets Rasulla’s mother at the station, she gives him a letter and asks him to read it. It has the news of Rasullah’s death and the letter is dated ten years back.

The very same day he receives a telegram saying that the Army Officer he was looking for has been killed in the war. With a heavy heart he goes to give the news to Mohini but there’s a huge crowd gathered there. Mohini tells him that Rasulla’s mother died of sorrow because somebody told her that her son is dead. Ravi feels guilty and tells her that he was the one who had read the letter out to her. At this she tells him he should have lied and hidden the truth from her. At least a lie would have saved her life. Everybody in the village knew of Rasulla’s death but nobody had dared to break the news to her because they were scared she would die of shock.

Now, Ravi (Rajesh) cannot bring himself to tell Mohini of Ravi’s (Jeetendra) death. And he goes back home with a heavier heart. He’s in a dilemma as to whether to tell Mohini the truth or to hide it from her.

Mohini, on the other hand, now aware that the war has come to an end starts waiting all the more eagerly for Ravi (Jeetendra) – Ghungta gira hai.

What will Ravi do now? Will he ever be able to tell Mohini the truth? Will she ever come to know that he was once in love with her? Will she misunderstand his intentions? Mohini’s Maa is pressurizing her to get married…how long will she be able to postpone it? Will she be able to voice out and explain about her marriage with Ravi (Jeetendra)? Is Ravi (Jeetendra) really dead? Or Ravi (Rajesh) has something else in mind?

What I liked about the movie : Everything! 🙂 I loved this movie. The simplicity and the sensitivity with which the story is executed is simply amazing. It’s a slow paced movie that builds up with every scene, every frame. I like the way how the story and the characters grow together hand-in-hand.

It’s set in a small village where hardly anybody knows to read and write. The entire movie is about small hurdles and obstacles that they have to overcome in their day-today lives. Not everything is perfect but how the characters still find a reason to smile and be content with what they have in life. It’s about relationships – how one can confide in a stranger, how a mere gesture of affection could be mistaken for love. Again, having said that, it’s not just Rajesh Khanna’s fault that he falls in love with her.  Admit that Hema Malini looks stunning in her deglam avataar but in addition to that she does lead him on, though unknowingly. Subtle performance, witty one-liners and lilting melodies, though not very popular, are the highlights of this film. Hats off to Gulzaar for writing such a beautiful story, Director Meraj for a wonderful job of executing and presenting the story, Laxmikant Pyarelal for beautiful music and all the actors for their great  performance.

Daakiya daak laaya made me feel very nostalgic – my eyes were brimming with tears when the song got over. Less than a decade ago, I myself used to wait so eagerly for the postman to come. The moment I would spot him cycling towards the hostel gate, I would literally run out to ask him if there was a letter for me. The joy of recieving a letter is something that emails and chat messengers can never match up to. Even with the advent of internet, I didn’t have much access to e-mails back then. Laptops were very rare and not allowed in hostel. And with all the rules in missionary hostel, we would get an outing only once a month. So had to wait for one whole month to go to an Internet cafe. Letters were faster. 😉 Postman would usually come during our lunch break but sometimes he would get late and come only after we left hostel for afternoon class. If I was fortunate enough to catch him on the way, I would still collect my letter before rushing for the class…but having to sit in class and concentrate on lecture with an un-opened letter in hand seemed to be the most difficult thing to do  in the world – 45 mins seemed like ages. But  it used to be worth all that. And oh how I miss all those simple joys of life now! 😦

What I didn’t like : Amjad Khan was wasted here…he hardly had 5 minutes role as the taangawaala. And even Jeetendra for that matter, though I am sure that except for bollywooddeewana and Nasir, nobody would actually mind that or miss him. He just has around 2 minutes time on screen. The end was a little too abrupt but other than than I foudn the movie very good.

I had bought this movie in December and wanted to review it as a part of Rajesh Khanna special post I was doing then for his  birthday, but I couldn’t even watch it then. So, when Jeetendra’s birthday was around the corner I thought I would write about it then, I had an excuse to pull out this movie from my stack. I finally watched the movie, but was so occupied that I couldn’t post it till today. I had come back home today with my mind set that I wouldn’t go to sleep without completing this post. And finally I have succeeded. 🙂