Anmol Fankaar: Dedicated to Talent of the World

Same Name Confusions (Part 2)

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Written by Arunkumar Deshmukh ji

So, Here we are again with the II part of this interesting series on Same Name Confusions.


The kind of variety in Names we find in today's generation, was probably missing in olden times, otherwise what could be the other reason why so many "Name Alikes' are found in Film Industry of the Yore ?


7.     Pt. AMARNATH-MD  /   Amarnath-MD    /  Amarnath-Director   /  Amarnath-Actor


 MD Pt Amarnath & Actor Amarnath (Courtesy: Cineplot)

We start with the curious case of having 4 AMARNATHS-Just too many,really- operating almost at the same time. Luckily for us,2 are from the Music field and 2 are from the acting/Direction field.


Let us first tackle AMARNATHS from the Music field.


Pt. AMARNATH was a respected and a senior composer from the early 40s. He was born in 1912,in Jalandhar, Punjab. He was the eldest of the 3 brothers The other two were Pt.Husanlal and Pt.Bhagatram. Pt.Amarnath was a specialist player of Tabla and Harmonium. He used punjabi folk and traditional tunes and music, making him a class apart from others in those days. He was connected with H.M.V. and orchestrated and composed all the 8 Gazals,Thumris and Geets sung by Master Madan. We must thank him for making these songs on Records.


Many emerging composers from Punjab, like S D Batish and Khaiyyam learnt a lot from him. S D Batish was a distant cousin of these 3 brothers and they too had Batish as their surname, which was not used generally by them.


Pt.Amarnath started his film career as a MD with Nishani-42,but only after doing Daasi-44,he became very famous. Lahore's Zeenat Begum sang her best Film and Non film songs with Amarnath. He gave music to Paapi, Sheher se door, Pagdandi, Kaise Kahoon, Sham Savera, Panchhi, Raagini, Dhamki, Aayee Bahaar, Irada (Hemant kumar sang his first Hindi film song in it), Shirin Farhad, Jhumke, Shalimar and Koyal. When Shantaram's 'Padosi-41 was made in Punjabi as 'Gawandi', the MD was Pt.Amarnath only.


Read more: Same Name Confusions (Part 2)

Same Name Confusions (Part 1)

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Written by Arunkumar Deshmukh

I have been seeing a variety of movies since 65 years or so. Among the ones I saw, I developed a liking for Mythological or Devotional (Dharmik) films, for a while. It was not due to my religious nature, but for the trick scenes (with special effects) in these films, which fascinated me immensely. I liked a scene where a God or a Rakshas multiplied into 10 images to confuse the opponent. Just imagine, 10 Ramas or 10 Ravanas on the screen at a time ! All with same name and appearance!! Not only their opponents,but even the audience in the theatres got confused who the real one was !!!


In real or the reel life, It is not so simple as 10 Ramas or 10 Ravanas. Here the 10 Rama names will be same but each Rama may look different. I remember,during my school days,in my class, there used to be at least 10 boys with the surname Deshpande, 15 Joshis, 12 Kulkarnis and 5 Deshmukhs.

Each boy was called by his initials,like A.B, C.D. or K.P.etc. Sometimes, even the initials used to be the same. In that case, another trick used was to call those boys based on their personality, like Lambu DK or Gidda DK etc.


In film Industry, same name artistes are identified by their vocation, like Lyricist Madan Mohan or Music Director Madan Mohan. But when there are Directors with the same names or singers with the same names, or actors or actresses, then what happens?


In an Industry where ,in the early era(as if there was a shortage of names all over India), there were 5 Nalinis or 6 Gauhars,or 4 Rajkumaris,5 Rajkumars,2 Jagmohans or 2 Trilok Kapoors what do you do ? There is bound to be solid confusion and wrong credits of films,songs etc takes place. The Internet Film sites are notoriously famous for spreading faithfully wrong, non corroborated or verified information blindly by 'Copy and Paste'! Any new student of Hindi films will easily get confused.


I will give an ideal example to prove this point. There is a site called If you look for information on the 1939 film ' Brandi ki Botal ',you will find the Heroine's name as Meenakshi Seshadri (instead of Meenakshi Shirodkar). What do you do with such information? I am sure even mother of Meenakshi Seshadri must not have been born in 1939!! Similarly when Shamshad begum (called chhamiya)-old time Gazal singer mother of Naseem Bano or the grand Mother of Saira bano died in 1998, many sites mourned and declared that the popular singer Shamshad Begum had died ! In fact, one site is still having this incorrect information!!!  Another famous and otherwise very useful site/blog mentioned the name of Neelam Kothari in a film made in 1943, whereas Neelam Kothari was born in 1964 only ! The name Neelam was misleading in this case.


Read more: Same Name Confusions (Part 1)

Sanjay Gandhi Nek Purush Tha - Usha Timothy's Rare Non Film On Her Birthday

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It is Usha Timothy ji's Birthday today. Thought of sharing a very rare song of hers
on the occasion.
She was one of the first artists interviewed on Anmol Fankaar and is one of the most
humble artists I have come across. She had told about her work in Hindi, Punjabi etc but seeing this

non-film was interesting. The song extols the good quality of Sanjay Gandhi but She herself is so sweet and nice.

May God bless her!
I was going through the records at a local record shop some days back when a white
label of a record caught my attention. These sort of records were made specially by
Gramophone Company of India for organisations on special occasions. (Remember the
Manna Dey song O Namrata Ke Samrat shared earlier by Suresh ji?) and are very rare. This one was done for "Rashtriya Sahityik Manch" by the company.

On reading the label, I was surprised to see that it is sung by Usha Timothy ji with
chorus. It appears to be an early 1980s recording. Its lyricist "Rashtra Kavi Sanam Gorakhpuri"
has also spoken a few lines in beginning of side 1. Usha ji sings the song with chorus after these lines
and the song continues on second side of the record. Over all, it becomes over 12 minutes in

The composer is Swami Amit and the record's number is TPI-412.

This is side 1 of the record:-

Sanjay Gandhi Nek Purush Tha - Record Side 1

This is the second side of the record:-

Sanjay Gandhi Nek Purush Tha - Record Side 2
Here is this very rare song (both parts) for your listening:-

Happy Birthday to her once again!


Anil Biswas : The Bhishma Pitamah Of Film Music

Anil Biswas
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Anil Biswas : The Bhishma Pitamah of Film Music

(July 7, 1914 – May 31, 2003)

Written by Shri Chiranjiv Singh

Anil Biswas was doing the final rehearsal for a song for Aarzoo with Lata Mangeshkar when he heard someone sobbing behind him. He gave a swipe backwards and the backhand hit the sobbing person. Anil Da looked back and saw it was Roshan. "Arre tu kyon ro raha hai?", he asked, and Roshan, still sobbing replied, "Mujhse aisa gaana kabhi nahi ban sakega". "Tu ro mat. Main tujhe ashirwad deta hoon; tu mujhse bhi accha gana banayega". The song was "Kahan tak hum uthayen Gham". Roshan acknowledged the blessing by using the tune as band music for a Baraat scene in Bawre Nain, (which was Roshan's first major hit). 
Anilda with Chiranjiv ji
Anil Biswas was truly a composers' composer. C. Ramachandra, Roshan, Madan Mohan were his disciples, (C. Ramachandra even worked as his assistant for a while). Naushad and O.P. Nayyar admitted that they grew up admiring Anil Da's tunes. Anil Biswas's film career sums up the history of film music of the golden era. His film career started in 1934 when he came to Bombay from Calcutta and ended in 1964 when his last film Chhoti Chhoti  Batein, produced  by his old friend, Moti Lal,was released. (After that he gave music for some documentaries and Doordarshan serials,and worked for All India Radio). Anil Biswas was in the process of moving to Delhi when Moti Lal insisted, " Anil iska music tum hi karoge". And Anil Biswas gave a memorable score for the film -- a fitting finale.

Anil Biswas despaired of making a singer out of Moti Lal. But he managed it. He used to narrate hilarious incidents about making singers out of actors like Moti Lal and actors out of singers like Akhtari Bai. It was this that led him to introduce playback singrng. It was a coincidence that Pankaj Mullick in Calcutta and Saraswati Devi and Anil Biswas in Bombay hit upon the idea of playback singing in the same year unknown to each other, he told me. The rest is musical history. He was the first to use a modern orchestra in Hindi film music, first to use fusion music, first to use counter melody, and operatic structure for a film score (Mehboob’s Roti 1942, for which the initial story idea was given by Anil Da). In those pioneering days for every problem solutions had to be found as they went along: “Hum ko jab pyas lagi to khud hi kuan khoda aur khud hi pani piya”, he used to say about his experiments and innovations. A chronological selection of his songs would be an accurate record of the development of Hindi film music. AniI Da said to me once, “Dekho, R.C. Boral film music ke Baap hain aur main Chacha”. He called R.C. Boral father of film music because he perfected the format of film songs with prelude, Sthayee, interlude, and Antara. This format remains unchanged.

Read more: Anil Biswas : The Bhishma Pitamah Of Film Music

Exclusive Interview with Composer Usha Khanna with Abhay

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I grew up listening to Usha Khanna's music and knew her (wrongly) as the only female music director of Hindi Films. Later, I found out that there were many other female music directors before her, notably Saraswati Devi. I really liked her songs, even though they were mostly in B-grade movies. I was fascinated by her uniqueness in the film industry and She was one person I really wanted to talk to. While I was with Mr Ameen Sayani at his office, I requested him if he could arrange for me to talk to her. He immediately phoned her but she was busy doing Pooja. We called her back in an hour and I was able to speak to her. She said Pooja is a big part of her life.  She agreed to record an interview with me on phone after I came back to US. I recorded the interview which was aired on my radio show Geet Ganga at Radio Dil (
Few highlights from the interview:
·         Her break in Hindi films
·         Her musical inspiration
·         How she effectively used Rafi’s voice.
·         Her fondness for Arabic music
·         Feelings about being only female music director (surprising answer)
·         Still active in music
·         Her unreleased songs
·         Her favorite songs
Here is the interview for your listening pleasure:-


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