Gopaldas Saxena “Neeraj” No More
Raah akeli,raah akeli raat andheri
Magar ratan hai daman mein
Saath na jis ke chalta koi
Us ke saath bhagawan chale…..
Award winning verse from Neeraj’s song, made true today. He’s with God leaving a void in the Hindi lyrics section of simple easy to understand verses. In an interview, Gopaldas Neeraj called himself an unlucky poet. The reason for this mentioned by him was that at least two or three prominent Music Directors of the Hindi Film Industry for whom he wrote very successful and popular songs, had expired. He mentioned the death of Jaikishan of the Music Duo Shankar-Jaikishan as well as of S.D.Burman, for both of whom he had written highly popular film songs, left him very depressed and he made a decision to quit the film industry, giving an abrupt end to a very promising career.
Born Gopaldas Saxena in the small village, Puravali of Etawah in Uttar Pradesh, India. He studied till high school at the Government College at Etah in Uttar Pradesh, and then studied until M.A. at the D.A.V. College in Kanpur. He wrote impressive verses under the pen name “Neeraj”. He had a unique style of writing easy to understand verses but at the same time those could be compared to Hindi literature of high quality. He has played a vital role to the world of Hindi cinema with extraordinary lyrics. He has been honored with a Padma Shri from the Government of India, Yash Bharti by the government of Uttar Pradesh, Rajat Shree by the e Hindi Samaj Australia and also Filmfare Award for Best Lyricist for the song “Kaal ka pahiya ghoome from Chanda Aur Bijli(1970)
He was highly influenced by the verses of Shri Harivansh Rai Bachchan. Starting his career in 1940’s by reciting in Kavi Sammelans, he entered the Hindi Film industry by writing songs for Nai Umar Ki Nai Fasal in 1960, followed by some hit films like Mera Naam Joker, Prem Pujari, Sharmilee, Pehchan, Chanda Aur Bijli, Tere Mere Sapne, Kanyadan, and Gambler.
Other literary works of Neeraj-
1. PRAN GEET
2. DARA DIYA HAI
4. BADAR BARAS GAYO
6. NEERAJ KI PATI
7. NEERAJ KI GEETIKAYEN
8. DO GEET
9. NADI KINARE
11. GEET AGEET
12. NEERAJ KI RACHNAVALI
Gopaldas Neeraj has gone behind the Kaal Ka Pahiya he mentioned in his famous song. He was suffering from prostrate cancer since long and was admitted to the ICU a few days ago. He succumbed to illness a while ago. May his soul rest in peace.
(Photo courtesy – Internet)