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Last Updated 15.07.2024 | 10:34 PM IST



As Chandrayaan 3 lands on the Moon, here’s looking at the planet’s significance in Bollywood songs over the decades

en Bollywood News As Chandrayaan 3 lands on the Moon, here’s looking at the planet’s significance in Bollywood songs over the decades

From eons before Chandrayaan 3 landed on the Earth’s only natural satellite—the moon, it has been the subject of innumerable parables and poetry, both as a metaphor or a simile, and of course as a proper name in all the three main religions of the world. By other strokes of imaginations of our Hindi film lyricists, there have been other ways in which the moon has been seen and written about.

As Chandrayaan 3 lands on the Moon, here’s looking at the planet’s significance in Bollywood songs over the decades

As Chandrayaan 3 lands on the Moon, here’s looking at the planet’s significance in Bollywood songs over the decades

Quite naturally then, apart from myriad film titles down the decade, like Chaudhvin Ka Chand, Chand, Chanda Aur Bijli, Suraj Aur Chanda, Chand Aur Suraj, Dooj Ka Chand and more, and related names like Purnima, Amavas and Grahan (referring to moon phases and eclipses), we have had some sterling lyrics that refer to the moon in multiple ways.

When the historic landing took place at 6.04 pm on August 23, our Prime Minister referred to the popular phrase, ‘Chandramama Door Ke’ (the moon is considered like a maternal uncle who is far away) that has been also immortalized by lyricist-composer Ravi in his debut film, Vachan (1955). He stated that from now on, Chandamama will be tour ke’ (a possible tourist destination in the future!). Someone else stated that, for India, the moon was now ‘paas ke’ (close to us).

In the prophetic Jagriti (1952) song, veteran Pradeep had mentioned that the world was sitting on a menace called the atom bomb. Probably inspired by that, the master lyricist Shailendra wrote in his New Delhi hit song’s antara, ‘Kal chand aur taaron mein pahunchega atomi ghoda / Arre bhai duniya ki rounaq dekh phir se /Arre bhai nikal ke aa ghar se’ (Tomorrow an atomic horse will reach the moon and stars / Then watch the world’s brightness again / Come out of your house to see it). Interestingly, most of us watched this technological wonder from inside our homes!

Gulzar had once told me, “For decades in cinema, the moon was only that—a symbol of a beloved’s face, or something unattainable. But then man reached it, set his foot upon it, and so he achieved that which was just a fantasy for centuries— going beyond the horizons of the birds.”

He went on, “My songs too have constantly reflected these changes. The moon has been a favourite topic in my songs, like in `Roz Akeli Aaye’ (Mere Apne) with its imaginative line, ‘Chand Katora Liye Bhikaaran Raat’ (the night comes with the moon as her begging bowl!) and `Chand Churaakar Laaya Hoon’ (I have stolen away the moon so that we can have our romantic rendezvous) from Devta in the 1970s. But there has been an evolution there as well, and I have even alluded to the Black Hole in one of my songs with the lines, `Chand ke paar jo sadak jaati hai’ in the 2002 Saathiya. Today, I cannot use `chand’ in an outdated fashion.”

As Chandrayaan 3 lands on the Moon, here’s looking at the planet’s significance in Bollywood songs over the decades

Anand Bakshi was inspired by Mahesh Bhatt’s childhood memories of his father meeting him, in Bhatt’s words, “Once in a blue moon.” In the Bhatt semi-biographical movie, Zakham, he penned the lines ‘Jaane kitne dinon ke baad, gali mein aaj chand nikla’ for the parallel situation when father and son meet!

And how can we forget Kaif Bhopali’s ultimate romantic rhapsody, ‘Chalo Dildaar Chalo Chand Ke Paar Chalo’ (Let’s go beyond the moon, sweetheart) from Pakeezah? This may well be a reality some decades later!

In Sapnay, Javed Akhtar even invites the moon down for a conversation! The song ‘Chanda re chanda re / Kabhi to zameen pe aa / Baithenge / Baatein karenge’ even goes on to suggest that if the moon is overcome with shyness, it can wear a veil of the dark clouds! In Fanaa, Prasoon Joshi gives full rein to his imagination by making the hero tell his girl ‘Chand sifarish jo karta hamari / Deta woh tumko bataa’, stating that if the moon could put in a recommendation, it would tell the heroine that he would not mind doing something guilty!

The moon has always been the ideal way to describe a girl’s beautiful countenance (‘Chaudhvin (the full moon on the 14th day) Ka Chand Ho’ (Chaudhvin Ka Chand), ‘Chand Jaise Mukhde Pe Bindiya Sitara’ with the bindiya as a star from Sawan Ko Aane Do, ‘Chand Si Mehbooba’ (Himalay Ki God Mein) and more.

Chand has been both a witness to love (‘Yeh Waada Karo Chand Ke Saamne’ from Rajhath) or even someone inferior to a lover in beauty —as in ‘Chand aahen bharega / Phool dil thaam lenge / Husn ki baat chali to sab tera naam lenge’ (Phool Bane Angarey).  

An unfulfilled love story is also detailed between the moon and the partridge bird (‘Chand Ko Kya Maloom / Chahta Hai Usse Koi Chakor’ in Himalay Ki God Mein). But perhaps a standout allusion is a comparison between the celestial moon and his beloved in the film Tere Naam—lyricist Sameer Anjaan has the hero declare, ‘Uss Chand Ka Muqabla Kya Hoga / Iss Chand Ke Aage / Yeh Saari Raat Jagaaye Hamein / Woh Bechara Saari Raat Jaage’—the poor moon in the sky can never sleep, while thoughts about my girl gives me sleepless nights.

And it is months of sleepless nights that have enabled the success of Chandrayaan 3. Do we foresee a movie made on this epic event? Or maybe a song penned by the ever-in-sync Gulzar?

Also Read: ISRO’s Chandrayaan-3 mission appreciated by film celebs: From Shah Rukh Khan, Karan Johar to Prabhas, Samantha Ruth Prabhu and more

More Pages: Zakham Box Office Collection


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