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Hindi Cinema’s Own Cloud Messenger

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Aha!! A passing cloud, don’t we wonder ,where is it going, will it bring rain ? The thundering clouds indeed carry a message to the dry souls on earth , the message of positivity. Nature has been a huge influence on poets and none other than our very own and one of the most famous ancient poets namely Kalidas . Clouds and Kalidas, yes Meghdoot !!! He invented and used a meter called Mandākrāntā (Sanskrit: मन्दाक् रान्ता) while composing Meghdoota( the Cloud Messenger) . It means “slow-stepping” or “slowly advancing” . The metre characterises the longing of lovers who are separated from each other, expressed in the वि रह रस “separation (of lovers). Let’s see the story of Meghdoot in a nutshell. A Yaksha at Alkapuri ,situated in the Himalaya, was cursed by Kubera and fled to another place called Ramgiri. Now this Yaksha kept longing for his companion the Yakshini and in this desperate state of mind finds a messenger in the passing Cloud ! He narrates his poignant tale and asks Megh to give this message of his longing , to his beloved at Alkapuri !
Meghdoota has been the benchmark for many poets and lyricists of Indian cinema for sure.
Let’s understand these different ways like Kalidas, the Meghdoots of Hindi Cinema . The first Meghdoota song which triggered me is the following
A Madan Mohan and Lata Mangeshkar classic gem –
Ja re badra bairi ja ja ja re, piya ka sandeshwa la re
Kahiyo sajan se man ki batiyaan ro ro haal suna ja

written by Rajendra Krishan in a true Virah ras and yet very near to Kalidas ‘s Meghdoota.

Here we have the next in line Meghdoota song. Nanda lip synching….Ja re kare badara balam ke dwar, written by Majrooh Sultanpuri and set to tune by Laxmikant Pyarelal from the Dharti Kahe Pukar Ke. The beloved is unaware of the girl’s feelings towards him. Hence she asks the Cloud messenger to narrate her yearnings. A different style indeed!

This one by Bharat Vyas and Vasant Desai combo is from Sampoorna Ramayan.
Badalon barson nayan ki kor se… describes Sita’s weeping, hurt soul. She addresses the Clouds through these words so that her beloved Ram is aware of her pangs of separation ,indeed the weeping Cloud Messenger in a Metaphor guise
Aye ghataon garjanaa ko thaam lo
aaj mere karun svar se kaam lo
aaj mere, aaj mere karun svar se kaam lo
bandh gaya saavan nayan ki dor se

Exemplary work by Bharat Vyas ji, weeping lyrics

Who can forget the foot tapping small couplets from Dil Deke Dekho by none other than Majrooh Sultanpuri, with a folksy dhun by Usha Khanna and lip synced by the King of romance Shammi Kapoor in Rafi ‘s voice.
The Cloud Messenger here is asked to make a lot of noise ,(here indirectly) to convey the flutter of romance ,also setting the romantic mood in turn and in anticipation.
O megha re bole ghanan-ghanan
pavan chale sanan-sanan
paayal baaje jhanan-jhanan
jiyra mora dole, aaja piyaa more
sajniya ghar aa, piya ghar aa
sajniya ghar aa, piya ghar aa
matvaali ghata kaali lahra ke aayi
matvaali ghata kaali lahra ke aayi
ghumad-ghumad ghum-ghum ghumad-ghumad
ghumad-ghumad ghumad-ghumad bole ghunghru
megha re bole bole re bole megha bole re

Another Metaphor ,the love struck Romeo calling his Juliet transponding the Clouds as Messenger!!

There are plenty of Meghdoota in Hindi cinema to ponder upon, however I would conclude with a beautiful composition by Santosh Anand movie Pyasa Sawan, music director Laxmikant Pyarelal, singers Lata Mangeshkar, Suresh wadkar and lip synced by Jeetendra and Mausami Chatterjee.
Megha re Megha re …mat pardes ja re ,
Aaj tu prem ka sandes barsa ja
So sweet subtle presentation ,conveying their feelings through the Cloud Messenger ,as they don’t want to part from each other.
Indeed as I said early the Cloud Messenger is the symbol of positivity.

3 Comments

  1. Dineshbhai Shah

    June 17, 2021 at 3:54 pm

    it’s surprising you forgot the Lagan song Kale megha kale megha.

    • Deepa

      June 18, 2021 at 11:49 am

      I’m sorry, but this is not about forgetting a particular song. There might be still hundreds of such songs out there. We can’t fit in all here. The idea is to enjoy the songs instead of just compiling everything.

  2. Yogesh Kale

    June 19, 2021 at 12:04 pm

    Beautiful and crisp writeup with assorted “roops” of Meghadoota… Loved the choice of songs too!

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