Jaidev

Written by Manohar Iyer
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Jaidev - The Jinxed Genius

(A Heartfelt Tribute on the Maestro’s 26th Death Anniversary)

By Manohar Iyer

 

Chhote se jeevan mein kitna pyar karun, piloon haala,

Aane ke hi saath jagat mein, kehlaya jaanewala;

Swagat ke hi saath vida ki hoti dekhi tayyaari,

Bandd lagi hone khulti hi meri jeevan ‘Madhushala

 

The couplet of Harivanshrai Bachchan from his most famous lyrical works “Madhushala” sums up the excruciating saga of Jaidev, one of the greatest but unsung and unwept composers of yore. It has been 25 years since Jaidev left this cruel world; he left the world when he had just ‘arrived’, his going was as imminent as his ‘coming’, his adieu was forgone in the ‘welcome’ and the closure pre-empted the opening in the bachhanal tavern of his life.

Having endured the fierce onslaught of fate right from the dawn of his sensibilities, what more could he ‘long’ for in life and what more could he ‘crave’ for from the ruthless world.

 

Jag mein jis roz se aaya, badi ruswayee hai,

Jism paaya hai to jeene ki sazaa paayi hai,

 

True to the quote of great maestro Naushad, Jaidev lived to suffer and he suffered to live. Life had been unreasonably unkind to him but death was more than gracious to emancipate him from the catastrophes of life.

 

 

Jaidev died on 6th January, 1987 but he didn’t bequeath a fortune for his ‘family’ to fend for themselves as he neither made a fortune in his life time nor had he a family to call of his own to bemoan his demise and inherit his ‘property’.

 

Jaidev Verma was born on 3rd August, 1918 in Nairobi where his father worked as a station master. Jaidev was nine years when his father returned to India in 1927 and after his mother died, he and his brother were left under the care of his maternal uncle and aunt who did not have children of their own in Ludhiana. Jaidev went to the Arya High School at Ludhiana and he gave up studies after the seventh class; yet he was not less than an erudite as he learned a lot from the harsh realities of life.

 

Jaidev’s musical inclination was detected when he started playing the harmonica as a toddler. His brother played the Tabla and together they regaled their relatives and friends. While in school, he was initiated to music by Prof Barkat Rai from whom he learnt music for about three to four years in the tradition set down by Pandit Vishnu Digambar Paluskar. He would also attend regularly the 130 years old Harvallabh Sangeet Mela, an annual music festival held at Jullandhar where he had the rare opportunity of listening to eminent musicians of the country. And, not the least, he was also influenced by his mother who recited the Ramayana and sang folklores with mellifluent ease and soulful elan (the hope-filled song O pagle der na hogi palchhin ki from Kinare Kinare was inspired from a song his mother would sing while watering the Tulsi plant; also the song O mitwa.. badra chhaaye re from Maan Jaaiye was inspired from yet another devotional ditty Main to aa rahi thi, bansi kaahe ko bajaaye which his mother sang). A genius was in the making but a series of misfortunes catapulted him to be labeled as a Jinxed Genius.

 

As a teenager, he was fascinated by the films made in the early thirties which he would see at the Kailash theatre in Ludhiana without any body’s knowledge. Enamoured by the glamour world, he fled from Ludhiana and came to Bombay when he was fifteen to get a glimpse of his favourite stars like Master Vithal, Zubeida, Ruby Mayers, Jahan Ara Kajjan. He had seen the latter’s film Alibaba aur 40 Chor made by Madan Theatres and was particularly impressed by her song Ilaahi in dinon taqdeer kyon gardish dikhaati hai. Jaidev acted in about seven to eight films made by Wadia Movietone; he played the role of Narada in Waman Avtaar and Nanko in Veer Bharat both made in 1934. The songs Rakho jo aag daaman mein kaho anjaam kya aaye and Paraayi peer jaane veer bharat ho to aisa ho were picturised on Jaidev. He acted in some more films like Kala Gulab (1934), Hunterwali (1935), Desh Deepak (1935) and Miss Frontier Mail (1936).

 

After his uncle died in 1936, Jaidev went back to Ludhiana only to return to Bombay after a year or two. By then, he had lost interest in acting as the studio arc lights started taking a toll on his eye sight. He had a far greater and better vision; he started taking music lessons from Master Krishnarao Chonkar and trained himself in Hindustani music from the Jaokar brothers (Krishnarao Jaokar and Janardhan Jaokar of the Kirana Gharana). In 1940, he went back to Ludhiana to take care of his father who had returned to India following health problems and after he passed away in 1943, Jaidev returned to Bombay. The family’s responsibility was on him and like a dutiful brother he got his sister married who is now settled in London.

 

He then went to Almora in 1943 and started giving programmes in radio as he was very proficient in Hindi, Urdu and Sanskrit. He came in contact with the fiery Sahir Ludhianvi who was studying then in the Government College, Ludhiana and whom he gave a break in radio to recite his revolutionary poems. In Almora, he joined Uday Shankar’s dance academy, India Culture Centre with a compulsive urge to learn the sarod from the renowned sarod maestro Ustad Allaudin Khan, who was on the payroll of the academy. When the academy closed down, a disheartened Jaidev went to Lucknow with a recommendation letter from Uday Shankar and met sarod maestro Ustad Ali Akbar Khan (son of Ustad Allaudin Khan). He took an instant liking for him and took him under his wings; he provided his protégé shelter, bought him a sarod and taught him the instrument and took him wherever he toured in connection with his concerts, a benevolent gesture which Jaidev remembered till his last. As an ode to his mentor, he liberally used the sarod in a number of songs – from the early Jogia tose naina lagaake (Anjali) to Nayi ri lagan aur meethi batiyan and Zindagi ko sanwaarna hoga (Alaap), Aap ki yaad aati rahi (Gaman), Ye khwab sa dekha tha (Aayi Teri Yaad) to More naina jaage saari rayna (from the unreleased Footpath), Raghuvar tumko meri laaj and Mujhko bhi radha banaale nandlal (Ankahee).

 

Constant travelling from place to place (chale jaa rahe the kinare kinare) and the varying climatic conditions affected his health. He suffered from asthma (a good number of years later, the rum he had from the navy canteen had a curative effect) and since he didn’t have a house or home of his own, he went for rest and recuperation to his sister’s place in Shimla. He decided to remain a bachelor and then went to Hrishikesh and stayed in the ashram of Swami Shivananda Saraswati. In his four months stay at the ashram, he was initiated to the philosophical works of great saints like Swami Ram Tirth and Swami Shivananda and became spiritually inclined.

 

In 1946, he fulfilled one more parental responsibility and got his younger brother married who also died very young within a year or so after his marriage which gave a big jolt to Jaidev. He was a shattered man and his outlook began to change completely; a visionary that he was, he became more spiritual, stoic to pains and pleasures of life and detached from the world and worldly comforts and cosiness. His spiritual leaning was manifest in an ensemble of ethereal compositions like Allah tero naam, Prabhu tero naam, Jaise suraj ki garmi se, Maata saraswati sharda, Bole radha shyam diwani, Tumhen dekhti hoon, Bansuriya mann har le gayi, Raghuvar tumko meri laaj, Thumak thumak pagh thumak kunj madh, Main jaanu naahin piya se milan kaise hoye ri to name a few.

 

In 1948-49, he went to Jodhpur and joined Ali Akbar Khan again who was then in the patronage of the King of Jodhpur. In the early 50s, when the Ustad came to Bombay following offers to compose music for Dev Anand’s films viz. Aandhiyan (1951) and Humsafar (1953), Jaidev accompanied him and joined him as his assistant. While working in Navketan (Dev Anand’s film company), he came in contact with Dev Anand’s favourite composer S D Burman and started working with him as his assistant from Taxi Driver (1954) directed by Chetan Anand. In 1955, Jaidev got a break as an independent composer to compose for Joru Ka Bhai which was followed by Anjali, both made by Chetan Anand.

 

S D Burman had full trust in his genius assistant; each time he entrusted him with a composing or creative job, he would advise him not to complicate it with difficult ‘murkis’ and ‘harkats’. Jaidev’s contribution to the oeuvre of S D Burman can be gauged through these very intricate nuances, very typical of him, discernible in a number of song gems like Phaili hui hain sapnon ki baahen (House No. 44), Ab aage teri marzi (Devdas), Dil lagaake kadar gayi pyaare and Hum bekhudi mein tumko pukare chale gaye (Kala Pani), Hum hain raahi pyar ke (Nau Do Gyarah), Ye mehlon ye takhton (Pyaasa), Jaanu jaanu ri (Insaan Jaag Utha), Na main dhan chaahun (Kala Bazar), Dekho rootha na karo (Tere Ghar Ke Saamne), Aise to na dekho and Kahin bekhayal hoke (Teen Deviyan), Piya tose naina laage re and Tere mere sapne ab ek rang hain (Guide) to name a few.

 

Even while assisting S D Burman in a host of films (from Taxi Driver in 1954 to Guide in 1965), Jaidev continued to give music. His big time came when Dev Anand signed him for Hum Dono, a musical set in the army backdrop with Dev Anand in a double role. The film had classy and classic song gems like the two evocative devotionals - Allah tero naam and Prabhu tero naam (in the heavenly voice of Lata Mangeshkar), the effervescent philosophical rhapsody - Main zindagi ka saath nibhaata chala gaya (Mohammed Rafi in an animated and free-wheeling spirit), the dulcet ‘insatiable love’ duet - Abhi na jao chhodkar (Mohammed Rafi and Asha Bhosle at their romantic best), the empathic sonnet - Jahan mein aisa kaun hai (Asha Bhosle at her pensive best) and the poignant ghazal (Rafi at his plaintive best) - Kabhi khud pe kabhi halaat pe rona aaya (Jaidev’s introspection of his ceaseless struggles, setbacks and short lived success), all penned by the prolic poet-lyricist Sahir Ludhianvi.

 

It is believed that post Hum Dono’s success, a promise was made by Dev Anand that every alternate film of Navketan will have music by the two wizards S D Burman and Jaidev. Accordingly, S D Burman was entrusted the baton of Tere Ghar Ke Saamne and Jaidev ‘signed’ for the music of Guide for which he is believed to have composed a couple of tunes too; however, the film was made and released finally with music by S D Burman, his career best. Jaidev proposes, Jai Dev disposes! Probably, for the first time, Jaidev felt exploited and stifled at Navketan and Guide marked the end of his long and fruitful musical association with both Dev Anand and S D Burman. Though the hurt feeling lurked in his mind for long, his respect and reverence for S D Burman remained the same till his last. Besieged by a chain of misfortunes, Jaidev made Main zindagi ka saath nibhata chala gaya the mantra of his life with his spiritual ethos to ‘guide’ him.

 

In the earlier phase of his career, besides Hum Dono, Sunil Dutt’s Mujhe Jeene Do, a sensitive saga on the life of dacoits, is ranked as yet another musical masterpiece of Jaidev (in collaboration with Sahir again) with perennial charmers like the enticing romantic mujra - Raat bhi hai kuch bheegi bheegi, the teasing folk based heart-stopper - Nadi naare na jao shyam, the feisty and festive - Maang mein bharle rang sakhi ri, the poignant and heart rending lullaby - Tere bachpan ko jawani ki dua deti hoon and the patriotic parable - Ab koyi gulshan na ujde ab watan azaad hai.

 

Jaidev was a sensitive and thinking composer and his compositions were of an exalted order - soulful and sublime, spiritual and transcendental, ethereal and heavenly. His music did not have the mass or popular appeal and hence he was considered ideal for music of low budget films, seminal films, art and / or new wave films made by sensitive filmmakers like Chetan Anand, K A Abbas, Hrishikesh Mukherji, Muzaffar Ali, Basu Chatterji, Bhimsen, Ved Rahi, Amol Palekar with lesser known stars which he never regretted. And most of his films ranging from the early Joru Ka Bhai, Anjali, Kinare Kinare to Do Boond Paani, Reshma aur Shera, Prem Parbat, Parinay, Alaap, Gaman, Tumhare Liye, Dooriyan, Ankahee, Chand Grahan (except Gharonda) failed at the box office and are remembered today only for their rich, classy, soulful and, not the least, award winning music by Jaidev. An ensemble of select musical marvels of Jaidev, the Jinxed Genius is appended at the end.

 

There were several films like Aatish (or Daulat Ka Nasha), Amar Jyoti, Annada Didi, Azaadi Pachhis Baras Ki, Ek Tha Chandar Ek Thi Sudha (announced with Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bhaduri), Footpath (which has Asha Bhosle’s huskily rendered More naina jaage saari rayna), Khunnas (the film boasts of one of the best mujras Sanwariya re kaahe maaro najariya re sung by Lata Mangeshkar and Usha Mangeshkar), Mulaqat, Shaadi Karlo, Shagun and Rangmanch which never saw the light of the day.

 

Rangmanch was announced as a musical (on the lines of Alaap) based on the emotional relationship between a middle aged virtuoso and her young disciple and for which ten songs were recorded by Jaidev. Had it been made and released and even if it had flopped like many of his other films, it would have at least won him some awards and accolades. Yet another film titled Chand Grahan was announced way back in the early 70s for which Jaidev recorded some classic gems in the voices of Lata Mangeshkar and Mukesh; the film was finally made and released as a tele film in the late 90s. Sadly, many of the classic compositions of Jaidev in these films went unnoticed like those from his released films.

 

Jaidev was a high minded man of strong conviction and principles, not one to compromise on the quality of work or any other aspect for the sake of commercial acceptance or popular awards and accolades. For instance, following the artistic success of Gaman (which won Jaidev his second National Award for best music), Muzaffar Ali had signed Jaidev to give music for his next film Umrao Jaan, a musical on the life of the 19th century poetess and courtesan starring Rekha in the lead role. Jaidev was suffering from haemorrhoids then and, enduring the pain, he had even composed not less than ten songs for the film (sitting on a tyre to prevent discharge of blood). At the request of the filmmaker, Jaidev had suggested the name of Madhurani, an upcoming and emerging singer as the voice for the visage of the protagonist to which the filmmaker and his wife had agreed. As an afterthought, the filmmaker and his wife came up with the idea of recording the songs in the voice of a known and popular singer; a principled man that Jaidev was, he left the film without even thinking twice the huge difference it would have made him commercially. Eventually, the film’s music was scored by Khayyam and the songs were rendered by Asha Bhosle and the rest is history.

 

As compared to his contemporaries, Jaidev was underpaid or not paid in time or not at all paid many a times. But, money considerations did not dilute his passion or affect the quality of work. He was a workaholic and had a method to his madness; he took note of the backdrop of the film, the situation, the character, the dialect, the lyrics and worked meticulously on the details of the song, its arrangement and orchestration till the final recording. No doubt he was exploited many a times of which he was well aware, but it was only when he felt so, he cut off his ties with the filmmakers (like with Dev Anand and S D Burman after the Guide) and dissociated himself from the composing assignment. Not many know that the title track of Ramanand Sagar’s epoch making serial Ramayan was by Jaidev. He left the serial at the nascent stage itself as he was not even reimbursed the taxi fare (from Churchgate to Natraj Studios, Andheri East), leave aside the credit or remuneration for composing. The pinch and hurt comes through the metaphorical lines of noted poet Muztar Akbarabadi :

 

Jab gulistaan ko khoon (efforts and contribution) ki zaroorat padi,

Sabse pehle hamaari hi gardan kati;

Phir bhi kehte hain humse ye ehl-e-chaman (filmmakers-industry people),

Ye hamara chaman hai, tumhara nahin (taking wrong credit for his work.)

Ae mere hamnasheen chal kaheen aur chal,
Is chaman mein ab apna guzara nahin.

 

Many of his compositions, with all their intricacies and nuances, were women-oriented - ritualistic, ceremonial or seasonal – and were steeped in our rich tradition and culture. Quite naturally, he banked heavily on front rank mainstream singers like Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle who held the maestro in very high esteem and did complete justice to his musical demands. Between the two sisters, the latter came across as a spellbinding surprise in Jaidev’s classic collection.

 

No doubt, Asha Bhosle was at her best singing for O P Nayyar and R D Burman with both of whom she had a strong emotional bonding. But when it came to singing for Jaidev, she willingly and expectantly submitted her limber and lithe vocals to his ruthlessly intricate musical demands - ‘murkis’, ‘harkats’, ‘khatkas’ and ‘sapaat taans’. The outcome was unimaginably awesome as could be seen from a wide variety of songs she excelled in like the Pilu based thumri - Hum sang naina kaahe ko lagaaye (Joru Ka Bhai), the rare Chandranandan (a raga invented by his mentor Ustad Ali Akbar Khan) and Malkauns based sentimental serenade – Raat ke pichhle pehron mein (Anjali), the Bilawal based flirtatious folk - Nadi naare na jao shyam and UP’s Chaiti styled festive – Maang mein bharle rang sakhi ri (both from Mujhe Jeene Do), the Maand based pathos laden plea - Jaa ri pawaniya piya ke des jaa (Do Boond Paani), the Shivaranjani-Khamaj-Kalavati based rhythmic and rumbustious multi hued (mujra­-qawali-folk) erotic caper Ek to ye bharpur jawani (Reshma aur Shera), the Des based Meera bhajan - Piya ko milan kaise hoye ri (Andolan), the nostalgic nugget - Mere dil mein teri tasveer (Ek Huns Ka Joda), Gaud Sarang based raas styled romantic - Bansuriya mann har le gayi (Tumhare Liye), the Bhairavi-Bilaskhani Todi based heart rending ghazal - Zehar deta hai mujhe koyi (Sameera), the Bhairavi based Kabir philosophy - Kauno thagva lootal ho (Ankahee) and the Malkauns based huskily rendered romantic - More naina jaage saari raina (from the unreleased Footpath). Unfortunately, many of these songs did not achieve the popularity they deserved and remain unsung like the maestro himself.

 

With a missionary zeal, Jaidev discovered new talents, trained and groomed them and introduced them as singers and / or gave a major fillip to their budding careers with a great feeling of fulfillment. The long list of wannabe singers with unconventional voices include names of now great reckoning like Chhaya Ganguli, Runa Laila, Peenaz Masani, Faiyyaz, Laxmi Shankar, Vani Jairam, Parveen Sultana, Hiradevi Mishra, Madhurani, Sarla Kapoor, Neelam Sahni and Shobha Kapoor and, among the males, names like Rajendra Mehta, Sharma Brothers, Bhupendra, Hariharan, Suresh Wadkar and Yesudas many of whom owe a great share of their initial success to Jaidev.

 

Besides setting to tune the lyrics of prolific mainstream writers like Sahir Ludhianvi, Kaifi Azmi, Jan Nisar Akhtar, Rajinder Krishan, Indivar, Nyay Sharma, Vishwamitra Adil, Balkavi Bairagi, Gulzar, Sudarshan Fakir and Naqsh Lyallpuri (Jaidev tuned his lyrics the most), Jaidev was a master in the art and craft of composing the literary works of eminent poets and writers like Harivanshrai ‘Bachchan’ (Madhushala in the voice of Manna Dey), Raamdhaari Sinh ‘Dinkar’ (Urvashi), Ram Prasad ‘Bismil’ (Sarfaroshi ki tamanna), Jaishankar Prasad, Maithili Sharan Gupta, Suryakant Tripathi ‘Nirala’, Mahadevi Verma (who had given a blanket permission to Jaidev to use all her writings), Padma Sachdev, Dharamveer Bharti, Narendra Sharma (Jo samar mein ho gaye amar), Dr. Rahi Masoom Reza, Jigar Moradabadi, Firaq Gorakhpuri, Makhdoom Mohiuddin, Shahryar. Very few composers had the privilege of such an illustrious musical association with literary writers. He also musically embellished the writings of great poet Mirza Ghalib and saints like Kabirdas, Tulsidas, Surdas, Meerabai in films like Andolan, Ankahee, Chand Grahan and private albums. As such, his compositions for films were as marked and distinct as his non-film works.

 

The wide variety of singers and writers as also filmmakers with whom Jaidev collaborated gives a deep insight of the genre of his music which ranged from the melody imbued songs with strong classical and folk base to songs with devotional-patriotic-philosophical fervour to romantic ghazals and nazms to euphonious interpretation of literary works in each of which he excelled.

 

As mentioned before, Jaidev’s compositions were of an exalted order - soulful and sublime, spiritual and transcendental and set to classical ragas. He embellished the songs with liberal use of Indian instruments particularly the flute, sitar and sarod which enhanced the euphonic appeal of the compositions and elevated the listener to celestial heights.

 

Jaidev is the only composer of the golden era to have been honoured thrice with the prestigious National Film Award for Best Music for his scores in Reshma aur Shera, Gaman and Ankahee. He was a four time recipient of the Sur Singar Samsad Awards for his rich classical scores in Reshma aur Shera, Alaap, Tumhare Liye (not sure) and Ankahee. Just a few days before he died, he was honoured in December 1986 with the Lata Mangeshkar Award instituted by the Madhya Pradesh Government along with a cash prize of Rs. One Lakh for excellence, creativity, long dedication and continuing performance in the field of light music.

 

Jaidev was a lonely man with no house of his own and no family to take care of him except a few friends who were mostly from the literary fields or judges, lawyers, painters, high rank officials and dignitaries. He needed a room to display his awards and trophies but sadly, most part of his life in Bombay, he lived alone as a tenant in a single room at Lily Court, near Ritz Hotel, Churchgate. His ‘Gharonda’ song Ek akela is shehar mein aab-o-dana dhoondhta hai, ashiyana dhoondhta hai… was almost biographical and depicted his plight.

 

I had the opportunity of meeting the genius just once in the early 80s when I had gone to invite him as a Judge for a music competition in IDBI where I worked for about 16 years. He asked me to meet him again but I didn’t; the typical look of a bachelor’s room with a cot, a cupboard (gifted to him by C Ramchandra), a fridge and books, magazines and newspapers strewn all over and, of course, a Harmonium and pair of Tabla, didn’t quite create an impression of him as a ‘serious and good composer’; Only much later, his ‘greatness’ dawned on me and what an unpardonable blunder I had committed by underestimating him like many others. I realised later that it was in that single room, the genius composer had created and composed all his mellifluous tunes and veered the destiny of a number of aspiring and upcoming singers who waited for hours together with unabated hope and patience.

 

He seemed happy in that single room; he had no option but to pretend so because each time his case was taken up for allotment of a house by the Government, bad luck struck and the allotment got delayed inordinately under some pretext or the other. It was sometime in the end of 1986 he was allotted a flat in Bandra by Rafiq Zakaria, the then Minister for Urban Development, Government of Maharashtra … but the letter did not reach him as he was thrown out of his accommodation by the cantankerous Parsi land lady – the only ‘discordant note’ in his otherwise melodious repertoire - to whom the ownership of the place had transferred after the original landlord had passed away.

 

Jaidev was virtually on streets when he was receiving the Lata Mangeshkar Award and the cash prize of Rs. One Lakh. He mockingly called himself a ‘Lakhpati’ when he received the cheque but unfortunately, he never found time to deposit it in the bank due to his constant shuttling between Bombay-Indore-Delhi in connection with the award ceremonies and felicitations and work assignments (he was recording an album of ghazals penned by Firaq Gorakhpuri then, a long cherished dream that came true).

 

After he was evicted from the single room, he stayed with a friend for a few days; he didn’t want to be a burden on anybody and soon shifted to the South Green Hotel. He was a tired man by then; age too was catching up and his health also started deteriorating. A couple of months before he died, he had lost appetite for food and each time he went to the hotel (Ritz and Gazebo where he regularly had his food), the aroma of the food deterred him from even entering the hotel.

 

He vomited blood on 3rd January, 1987 and was admitted in the Breach Candy Hospital. In the morning hours of 6th January, 1987, he breathed his last and left the world unsung and unwept. Contrary to the proverbial phrase ‘cruel death’, it was Life which had been more cruel to him and Jaidev found deliverance in death. As Sahir put it :

 

Maut kitni bhi sangeen ho magar, zindagi se toh mehrbaan hogi,

Hum na honge toh gham kise hoga, khatm har gham ki dastaan hogi.

He had no family of his own to moan his death; only a few close associates who cared for him and knew about his death were present at his funeral and grieved at the loss of a colossal talent which the film industry had ruthlessly disregarded and neglected. In the twilight of his life, Jaidev must have only felt :

 

Waqt ki dhoop mein yaadein bhi pighal jaati hain,

Mujhko bhi log bhula denge fasaane ki tarah.

 

Time has made the industry forget the unsung genius but his wide repertoire of great musical works have made music lovers forget Time. Jaidevji, Time cannot erase easily the memories of your melodious contributions to the music world.

 

With all the appreciation, awards and accolades, he did not get commercial acceptance and the deserved recognition as a front rank composer which is a sad reflection of the culture of modern cinema and the society at large. While many of his contemporaries met with success, both in terms of name, fame and fortune and remained in limelight for most part of their life, Jaidev lived and died in wilderness and amidst adversities. His creatively eventful and enviable but commercially unfortunate career is epitomised by the couplets of Qateel Shifai :

 

Garmi-e-hasrat-e- nakaam se jal jaate hain,

Hum charaghon ki tarah, shaam se jal jaate hain;

Shama jis aag mein jalti hai numayish ke liye,

Hum usee aag mein gumnaam se jal jaate hain.

 

He got fame and fortune at the twilight of his career but he was neither fortunate to live with it nor fortunate to leave the world without suffering. True to the couplet of Harivanshrai Bachchan, Jaidev left the world when he had just ‘arrived’, his going was as imminent as his ‘coming’, his adieu was forgone in the ‘welcome’ and the closure pre-empted the opening in the bachhanal tavern of his life.

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