Chingaari koi bhadke, to saawan usey bujhaaye
Saawan jo agan lagaaye, usey kaun bujhaaye
Patjhad jo baag ujaade, woh baag bahaar khilaaye
Jo baag bahaar mein ujade, usey kaun khilaaye?
Maana tufaan ke aage, nahin chaltaa zor kisi ka
Maujon ka dosh nahin hai, ye dosh hai aur kisi kaa
Majadhaar mein naiyya doobe, to majhi paar lagaaye
Maajhi jo naao duboye use kaun bachaaye?
The moment we hear these lines, the memorable scene of Rajesh Khanna from ‘Amar Prem’, singing these immortal lines on a boat in the middle of the Hooghly River, plays in front of our eyes. And these eternal lines were penned by the perennial lyricist Anand Bakshi. It is said that these lines were originally not written for ‘Amar Prem’ but was just a reflection of some random thoughts of the poet. However, when Shakti Samanta heard the poem, he decided to use it for his film ‘Amar Prem’.
Anand Bakshi was born on 21st of July 1920 in Rawalpandi, when India was still undivided. His family’s origin trails back to Kashmir and also the Kuri village nearby Rawalpindi in Pakistan. His grandfather was a Deputy Superintendent of Police during British Raj at Rawalpindi. His father, Mohan Lal Vaid Bakshi, was a manager in a bank at Rawalpindi.
He lost his mother at a very tender age and completed his schooling from Pakistan only. He joined the Cambridge College in Rawalpindi later. In 1943, he abandoned his studies and joined the Royal Indian Navy in 1944.
His Days At The Navy/Army:
Bakshi served the Navy for two years until in 1946, the Royal Indian Navy expelled him for taking part in a secret revolt against the British rule. After the partition, he and his family left Pakistan and they migrated to Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh only to later shift their base in Delhi.
In 1947, he joined the Indian Army as a ‘signal man’ in the Corps of Signal after getting expelled from the Navy. In between his tenure at the Indian Army, he kept on trying his luck to be a singer at Bombay (currently known as Mumbai). Bakshi always had the dream of becoming a singer since his childhood.
His first poem got published in the Army Publication of ‘Sainik Samachaar’ in 1950. While being in Army, to entertain his colleagues during the leisure hours, he used to sing his own written songs to them. His poems and songs were loved and appreciated by his colleagues at the Indian Army. In 1950, he gave a voice test at the All India Radio station at New Delhi. He was disqualified in the test.
In 1951, he left his job at the Corps of Signal and went to Bombay to fulfill his dream. His first attempt at trying to be a writer or singer failed miserably forcing him to go back to the Army. This time he joined the Corps of the Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. In 1954, he married Kamla Mohan on the 2nd of October, who was a neighbour of him at Rawalpindi.
In 1956, he applied to the Army again requesting for a discharge from service. On the 27th of August 1956, he was finally discharged from his service at the E. M. E. For the second time, he again went to Mumbai to try his luck.
Struggle At Mumbai:
Being at Mumbai for the second time, this was the last chance for Bakshi to fulfill his dreams. His struggle for Mumbai started and he visited every studio and met every person he could. Nothing worked out and finally he went out of money after the first three months. He could have returned home but was embarrassed to face his family as he chose to come over to Mumbai against their wishes. By this time, Bakshi’s first daughter was already born.
Soon he came to know that Master Bhagwan was about to start his new movie’s production. The movie was named as ‘Bhala Aadmi’. Bakshi decided to meet him at his Dadar office. As soon as he introduced himself as a writer to Master Bhagwan, he instructed him to write four songs. His lyrics for the movie were approved and Bakshi was paid an amount of Rs 150 for his first ever movie.
Sunil Dutt, once sent Anand Bakshi with a recommendation letter to Raj Kapoor to provide him with a break in Kapoor’s movies. Raj Kapoor’s assistant Hiren Kheda informed Bakshi that Raj Kapoor would not be keen to take him as he already has a team to write for him. However, he promised to provide a chance to Bakshi whenever he would make his own film. Soon, Kheda produced his own movie ‘Mehndi Lagi Mere Haath’ and Bakshi was signed as the lyricist.
Roshanlal Nagrath or simply known as Roshan was a successful music director at that time. Once he asked Bakshi, to come over to meet him at the studio. Heavy rain took over Mumbai on the day of the meeting and the entire transport system collapsed. Bakshi walked down the road for hours to reach him at the studio. Roshan was elated and surprised to see the determination of this writer. Hence, Bakshi landed up writing lyrics for ‘CID Girl’ with Roshan as the music director.
Simple Thoughts Produced Legendary Lyrics:
Main shayar to nahi
Magar ae haseen
Jab se dekha maine tujhko…mujhko
Shayari aaa gayi
Main aashique to nahin
Magar ae haseen
Jab se dekha maine tujho…mujhko
Aashiqui aa gayi
Rishi Kapoor’s debut movie ‘Bobby’, produced and directed by Raj Kapoor, had these standout lyrics written by Anand Bakshi. The song was re-recorded again with Shailendra and Shaan for the movie ‘Hum Tum’ starring Saif Ali Khan, Rani Mukherjee and Rishi Kapoor in 2004. The track was a part of the film but not of the album of ‘Hum Tum’.
He also wrote the song, ‘Hum Tum Ek Kamre Mein Band Ho’ for the movie ‘Bobby’. After writing the lyrics for this song, Bakshi was confused if ‘Bobby’ is a girl or a boy. However, when Raj Kapoor heard the lyrics, he thought that it would be applicable to both.
‘Aan Tum Miloge’ is another movie which has a story behind the lyrics of its song ‘Acha To Hum Chalte Hain’. Music Director Laxmikant-Pyarelal and Anand Bakshi could not decipher proper lyrics for the song even after hours of discussion. When they finally gave up and Bakshi was about to leave, he said, ‘Acha To Hum Chalte Hain’ and in reply Laxmikant said, ‘Phir Kab Miloge?’ and at that moment the song was made!
Yeh dosti hum nahin todenge
Todenge dum magar
Tera haath naa chodenge
Reminiscing the unbreakable bond of friendship between Jai and Veeru, these lines are unforgettable by any Indian. Sholay, the ‘All Time Blockbuster’ of Bollywood, featured this song written by Anand Bakshi and it still bears the mark of everlasting friendship.
Yeh Jo Mohabbat Hai
Yeh Unka Hai Kaam
Mehboob Ka Jo Bas Lete Hue Naam
Mar Jaaye, Mit Jaaye
Ho Jaaye Badnaam
Rehne Do Choro Bhi Jaane Do Yaar
Hum Na Karenge Pyaar
Rendered by Kishore Kumar and composed by R. D. Burman for Shakti Samanta’s ‘Kati Patang’, this song depicts the brilliance of Anand Bakshi’s lyrics. The painful sarcasm of a defeated lover is soulfully described through the lyrics of the song. The sont went on to become one of the chartbusters in the year of 1970. Needless to say, the Bakshi and Burman pair also created the unbeatable masterpiece of ‘Dum Maaro Dum’ in 1971 for ‘Hare Rama Hare Krishna’.
Saawan ka mahina
Pawan kare shor
Jeeya ra re jhume aise
Jaise banmaa naache mor
Sunit Dutt and Nutan starrer ‘Milan’ featured this song. Based on the subject of reincarnation, the song had a rural touch in its lyrics. The words and their applications were brilliantly penned by Anand Bakshi.
Har karam apna karenge
Aye watan tere liye
Dil diya hai jaan bhi denge
Aye watan tere liye
Tu mera karma, tu mera dharma, tu meraa abhimaan hai
Aye watan mehboob mere, tujhpe dil qurban hai
Hum jiyenge aur marenge aye watan tere liye
Dil diya hain jaan bhi denge
Aye watan tere liye
In 1986, Anand Bakshi wrote these patriotic lines for Subhash Ghai’s ‘Karma’. The words would hit the chords of any Indian’s heart. ‘Dil Diya Hai, Jaan Bhi Denge, Aye Watan Tere Liye’, who would not get goose bumps hearing these words? Love and dedication towards the nation is expressed through the simplest words in the song and of course none other than only Anand Bakshi can do that!
It is said, that when Anand Bakshi recited the lyrics of the song to Subhash Ghai, he instantly presented him with a token of Rs 100 as a sign of appreciation by signing on it. Bakshi kept that token of note with him forever until his demise.
Dil yeh bechain ve
Raste pe nain ve
Jindari behaal hai
Sur hai na taal hai
Taal se taal mila
The 1999 release ‘Taal’ by Subhash Ghai had these rhythmic lyrics in its bag that made the entire nation swing with the beats of the song. Anand Bakshi, again demonstrated his versatility through his words here.
Mere Khwabon mein jo aaye
Aake mujhe chede jaaye
Mere saamne to aaye
The ever so young and fresh song from Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge by Lata Mangeshkar was written almost 24 times before finalizing the final draft of the song. It is said that Aditya Chopra, the director of the film, made Anand Bakshi write the lyrics almost 24 times before the final one got his approval.
Bakshi wrote for more than 600 movies and 4000 songs. His contribution to the Indian cinema stretches through four generations. His legendary lyrics are still alive in our hearts.
As A Singer:
Anand Bakshi did also try his hand on singing. His first song was a duet with Lata Mangeshkar from the movie ‘Mome Ki Gudiya’. The track was ‘Baaghon Mein Bahaar Aayi, Hothon Pe Pukaar Aayi’. He went on to sing ‘Chanda Sa Koi Chehra’ from ‘Sholay’ with Manna Dey, Kishore Kumar and Bhupinder Singh. He also sang ‘Sun Banto Meri Baat’ with Asha Bhosle from the film ‘Maha Chor’. ‘Aaja Teri Yaad Aayi’ from ‘Charas’ was also sung by Anand Bakshi with Mohammad Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar. ‘Jagat Musafir Khana’ was his solo song from the movie ‘Balika Badhu’.
Anand Bakshi won four Filmfare Awards in his lifetime. In 1977 he received his first Filmfare for the movie ‘Apnapan’, in 1981 he received for ‘Ek Duje Ke Liye’, in 1995 he received for ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge’ and in 1997 he received Filmfare Award for ‘Taal’.
30th March 2002: His Demise
Anand Bakshi was reportedly admitted at the Nanavati Hospital in Mumbai for a heart surgery. He was affected with bacterial infection later and died due to failure of multiple organs. His heart and lungs were duly affected for him being a heavy smoker. He took his last breath on 30th March 2002.