Ten of my favourite saheli songs

(And a very brief tribute to Dev Anand, 1923-2011).

This is the second of my ‘prize posts’ for the Classic Bollywood Quiz. The first of these posts was dedicated to Karthik, who’d once suggested I do a list of lesser-known composers. This post is dedicated to Anoushka Dave, our overall winner. Anoushka, whose prize included a signed copy of my latest book, also got the chance to tell me which post she’d like me to do: which film to review, or which list to come up with. Anoushka suggested this one: ten saheli characters, or ten saheli songs.

This was, for me, a very unusual (and interesting) challenge, because I’d never really thought of it. Some pondering, and I realised that while Hindi cinema makes a huge deal about a bromance, the female equivalent of it has been largely pushed into the background. Offhand, I could think of only one film (the forgettable Saheli, starring Kalpana and Vijaya Choudhary) that focused on girl friends. But songs? Yes, with some effort (a lot of it, actually), I could draw up a list of ten songs that featured sahelis, at work, at play, at general saheli-ness.

So here they are: ten of my favourite saheli songs, from pre-70s films. One important rule I set for myself while compiling this list was that the characters featured onscreen would be only sahelis, not blood relatives – so, no sisters (à la Humre gaaon koi aayega or Garjat barsat saawan aayo re or Mujhe mil gaya bahaana teri deed ka). Here goes, in no particular order:

1. Main chali main chali dekho pyaar ki gali (Padosan, 1968): So what is it that sahelis do when they’re together? Go cycling, of course (and on picnics). And if your sahelis are really good sahelis who truly want you to be happy, they’ll ensure you keep your feet firmly on the ground. They’ll urge you not to go wandering off where a passing Romeo might take a fancy to you… a delightfully chirpy song from a delightful film. And yes, by the end of it, the sahelis have sort of joined our heroine in extolling the virtues of falling in love!

2. Banke panchhi gaaye pyaar ka taraana (Anari, 1959): This song, though it was created nearly a decade before the Padosan one, takes up where Main chali main chali dekho pyaar ki gali left off. The gang of sahelis is cycling here too, but the refrain is pretty unanimous: from Nutan to her best friend Shubha Khote to all their other pals, the girls are all singing about how wonderful it would be to fall in love. At the end of the song, they do fall – or at least the heroine does – but not immediately in love.

3. Gaon ki main gori chanda ki chakori (Humjoli, 1970): Continuing with the trend of athletic sahelis: this bunch isn’t cycling, but they’re playing kabaddi (or hu tu tu, considering the lyrics here). And singing. And breaking into a little jig now and then. All of that takes a lot of stamina, but Leena Chandavarkar and Aruna Irani – heading the two teams – are pretty good at it.

I love the entire scenario of this song. There’s the competitiveness of the two girls – one priding herself on being chic and urban, the other singing about her rural sweetness, while also challenging each other as opponents in the game. There’s the fact that they’re actually playing kabbadi, leaping about, grabbing, and sprawling realistically in the dirt. And there’s the infectious playfulness about the whole thing. I’m reminded of my school days, though we never thought of singing while playing kabaddi.

4. Ae kaala baadal bol (Dahej, 1950): Of course, it’s not necessary that a group of sahelis be athletic, cycling around or playing kabaddi. They might simply get together to string long ropes with swings on them from all the trees in a garden, and swing together as they serenade the rainclouds looming above. Dahej had a couple of other good saheli songs, where all the sahelis get together (another one I especially like is Choori dheere pehna chooriwaali) – but this is my favourite. The music is lovely, and the picturisation – the young women, swinging in perfect unison, looking so carefree, relaxed and happy – it’s a lovely way of highlighting a simple joy of life.

5. Tum jiyo hazaaron saal (Sujata, 1960): What’s a birthday party without all your best friends gathered round and singing? And not even singing that same boring old song about “many boyfriends to you” and whatnot – but wishing the friend real happiness: the stars to always twinkle for her, the sun to always shine, the flowers to always be a riot of colours for her. This is one of my favourite songs. A favourite Geeta Dutt Asha Bhonsle song (though Geeta Dutt also recorded a version, never included in the film). A favourite Shashikala song. A favourite ‘Edwina’s friends’ song. A favourite piano song. And a favourite ‘being happy with sahelis’ song. Birthday songs don’t get better than this.

(And yes: there’s the bittersweet juxtaposition of the ‘outsider’ – Sujata (Nutan) left unintentionally out of the festivities. She wouldn’t be unwelcome, but she wouldn’t fit in with her foster sister’s sahelis, would she? Bimal Roy’s picturisation of this song is beautifully understated, yet poignant as it shows up Sujata’s bitter acceptance that she is not part of the family, even if she’s dressed up for the festivities).

6. Gori sasuraal chali (Shagoon, 1964): And what’s the ultimate celebration? The wedding of a saheli. This song has a nice folksy feel to it – very much like the sangeet you hear at typical North Indian (especially Punjabi) weddings. The other girls, who dance and join in the chorus, are good – but the focus here is (I think) more on Chand Usmani, even, than on Waheeda Rehman. Waheeda may be the beautiful bride getting ready for her big day, but it’s the pride and affection in Chand Usmani’s face, as she helps dress up her friend, that really endears her to me.

7. Jaanoon jaanoon re kaahe khanke (Insaan Jaag Utha, 1959): But: before the wedding happens, it’s the saheli who’s your best friend when you’re in love. She’s the one you confide in, the one you tell what an absolute charmer and looker and Mr Right the man you love is. Occasionally, you may deny it – you might even try to fool yourself into thinking you don’t care about him. But a true friend always knows.
I praised this song in my recent review of Insaan Jaag Utha, and I’ll praise it again. Madhubala and Minoo Mumtaz make a very believable, chummy pair of friends (both have such infectious smiles!). Everything about this song – its picturisation, the music, Geeta Dutt’s and Asha Bhonsle’s rendition, the girls and their beaux – is wonderful.

8. Mere mehboob mein kya nahin (Mere Mehboob, 1963): The ‘confided love’ story, again. This time, it’s two sahelis describing the beauty, the voice (“like glass tinkling on glass”), the angelic virtue, the absolute nobody-like-him nature of the man each of them loves. Who, unfortunately and unknown to these two ladies, is actually the same man. It’s hard for me to accept that Sadhana’s and Ameeta’s characters are singing all that in praise of Rajendra Kumar, but it’s a great song, anyway.

9. Baat-baat mein rootho na (Seema, 1955): But what good are friends if they’re only friends when you’re enjoying yourself? A good friend should be the one who stands by you through thick and thin, and who doesn’t hesitate to pull you out the dumps or coax you out of a fit of the sullens. In this song from Seema, Shubha Khote’s character does just that for her friend, played by Nutan. She tells her to stop sulking and getting annoyed at trifles; and she gives her friend a few lessons in life – for instance, that if you laugh, the world laughs with you, and if you cry, you cry alone. No wonder, by the end of the song, Nutan’s scowl has been replaced by a shy smile, and she’s joining in the friendliness all around her.

10. Hum panchhi mastaane (Dekh Kabira Roya, 1957): This one’s my favourite saheli song, bar none – because it exemplifies friendship. It’s a carefree, delightful celebration of life, of friendship, of all that friendship means: affection, understanding, being happy in each other’s company. The music (Madan Mohan’s) is out of this world, the setting is perfect, and the ladies – Anita Guha and Shubha Khote (she did a lot of saheli roles, didn’t she? This list has three songs that feature her) – exude an infectious joie de vivre. And I love the whistling, Shubha Khote’s spirited playing of the mouth organ, and their unrestrained prancing down the road. So much fun!

And: a bonus song. Not so much because it’s a strictly saheli song, but because I learnt this morning – just as I was about to publish this post – that Dev Anand had passed away. There will be a separate tribute post later this week, but for now, a song that praises Dev Anand and has a saheli link to it: Dekhne mein bhola hai, from Bombai ka Babu.

Suchitra Sen’s character sings and dances with her sahelis, playfully teasing her city-returned ‘brother’, completely unaware that this handsome stranger isn’t her brother, actually. She warns off her sahelis – calling them by name (Niki, Muni, Noor and Begum are the girls) and tells them not to make fun of this ‘haseenon ka shehzada’ (‘prince of handsome men’, loosely translated), because he just might fly away with their hearts.

Yes, you did, Dev saab. RIP.

108 thoughts on “Ten of my favourite saheli songs

  1. I’m the first it seems, and won’t be around for a week.
    Was shocked to read about Dev Anand’s passing away.
    RIP dear Devji. You’ve given us a lot to remember you by.

    My favourite saheli song also happens to be the Dekh Kabira roya one and also the one from Mere Mehboob.
    There are sooo many sakhi songs actually, but as I’m in a hurry the two that come to mind;

    This one is a repetition of the picnic song, but it makes a great saheli song as well. Love the playfulness of Meena and Shammi – the sand castle, the fishing net, the dancing etc etc

    A sakhi song with a difference


    • Yes, pacifist – it was a shock for me to discover that Dev Anand’s passed away. It’s not been reported here in the newspapers yet, but it’s all over the Net now, and on the radio and TV channels. Another icon moves on…

      I like Sheesha-e-dil itna na ucchaalo: lovely song, well sung – and the picturisation is lovely. Quintessential saheli song! I wish I’d thought of that one. *shakes head in regret*

      Meow meow meri sakhi wouldn’t have made my list, partly because I’m not too fond of the song, but more because I wanted this list to be actually one that featured songs sung by women (or girls) who’re actually friends. That’s why a lot of the songs may not have words like “sakhi” or “saheli” in them, but the situation involves sahelis.


  2. Just remembered another all time favourite :)
    from Johny Walker

    There are duets between sisters, bhabi/nanad so I decided to put up a couple of more with the words ‘sakhi’ to make sure.


    • Thandi-thandi hawa poochhe unka pata had been on my shortlist – but had to be (with extreme regret!) dropped, because of my self-imposed rule of not including songs from films I haven’t seen. I’d been hoping to try and get hold of Johny Walker, but it hasn’t happened yet. :-( I love that song, and Shyama is, in any case, an old favourite of mine. I love her!

      Love the Grahasti song too. I remember watching this film years ago – I remember only the gist of the film, but I’d forgotten who starred in it (except Ashok Kumar – I think?), and I’d forgotten the songs.

      Maybe it’s time someone did a ‘songs of women relatives’ list – sisters, sisters-in-law, cousins, mothers-and-daughters, whatever! :-)


  3. Dev Anand passed away? My favorite uncle, the one who looked like DA, used to carefully arrange his hair in a replica of DA’s style, and who did look a lot like DA, was the one who introduced me to DA. He passed away very suddenly last year, and now DA? This is sad news, indeed.
    In his honor, here is a song which is sung by him and his friends, while Mala Sinha and her friends are also playing – with his autograph.

    RIP, Dev sahab, and when you see my Mama, do go up and talk to your ardent fan and tell him that both of you are dearly missed here.


    • I’m sure your Mama must’ve been at the forefront, Lalitha, to welcome Dev Anand.

      Dev Anand was iconic, almost, for both my parents’ generation, and for a lot of my generation too – even though his heyday was behind him by the time I was old enough to appreciate his films. Incidentally, the first film I remember watching was a Dev Anand starrer – and one of his best films, as far as I’m concerned – CID.

      I don’t much care for the silly lyrics of She ne khela he se aaj cricket match, but the situation and the picturisation are cute!


    • Ah, yes. I remember Tom Daniel linking to this song – and a brief scene before the song, in which we actually got to see Edwina Lyons speak a couple of lines and sing (in her own voice) “Shake, rattle and roll“. A good example of being teased mercilessly by one’s own sahelis.


  4. Unfortunate that Dev Anand passed away.

    DO, lovely selections!

    Harvey, you beat me on ‘Pad Gaye Jhoole’-I love that song.

    Here is one of my favorite Roshan songs (he is the master of preludes in hindi film music).Great music

    This one from Miss Mary

    And Roshan again-(this time from Chitralekha)


    • Coincidentally, Karthik, I’d considered both the Meena Kumari songs – the ones from Miss Mary as well as Chitralekha – but they eventually didn’t make the list for various reasons. But I must admit I really like Sakhi ri sun bole papeeha us paar… beautiful song.


  5. This is a wonderful list, saheli songs, because a saheli is a friend, and friends last forever. I know and love all the songs in this list, except the one from Dahej, and that’s the one I am going to listen to, after I go through all the songs in the comments. There was a time, a couple of years back, when a friend’s husband was working out of town, and would come home every other week, so every now and then, we would gather at her house for a girls’ night out, and eat and sing songs. The men were really jealous of the girl-time we were having, but that was really important for us, because that was the time we really connected, listened to each other, and discussed several important issues. Many were the tears shed, and wiped, many jokes shared, many issues discussed and dissected, but all those times came to an end when her husband retired and came back home. I miss those days!

    Here is another song with Nanda and her friends:

    and with Nargis and her friends:

    and this is what happens when Padmini gets together with her friends:

    Wonderful choice of songs and topic.


    • Thank you, Lalitha! Glad you liked the songs. And Anoushka deserves all the thanks for having chosen the topic. :-) I loved working on this post – it was a great challenge, and I enjoyed every minute of it.

      Three nice saheli songs there, in your comment. I had thought of including the one from Chhoti Bahen in my list, but had given it up, because my memories of what happens right after the song were too depressing to let me really appreciate the song as much as I would have, out of context.

      I understand totally what you mean about gathering together for a girls’ night out, just to chat and eat and sing. A few of my dearest friends – some of them ex-colleagues, some schoolmates – do something similar now and then. Maybe we’ll meet on a Saturday afternoon for lunch, then spend the rest of the day together, just chatting and sharing our lives with each other. Fabulous detox!


  6. Another song of sakhiyan teasing the heroine. I love the melodious tune by Vasant Desai. Both Lata and Geeta sound so good.
    Film: Goonj uthi shehnai


    • I have this DVD lying at home, but haven’t got around to watching it yet. Hadn’t heard this song before (even though I have heard some of the other better-known songs from the film). Thank you for giving me an incentive to watch Goonj Uthi Shehnai soon! Nice song. Liked it a lot.


      • Wonderful topic, Madhu.
        Ny all-time favourite has been mentioned here “akhiyan bhool gayi hain sona” from Goonj Uthi Shehnai.
        In my list of 1-10, I’d fill all 10 spots with this song. :-) Everything about it is just SO perfect.

        Many songs have been mentioned here (I haven’t gone through all the comments) – there was also “thandi thandi hawa” from Prince that falls in this “saheli” category, right?


        • I’d forgotten about Thandi-thandi hawa mein dil lalchaaye, raja:

          … even though I remembered the existence of what may count as a ‘sahelis’ in competition song from the same film: Helen and Vyjyantimala (joined by Shammi Kapoor) in a dance-off:

          Muqabla humse na karo:

          …though these two dancers are more obviously in competition in this song-and-dance from Dr Vidya, Aaye haaye dilruba:


  7. Thanks Madhu. Once again a great list. My favourites have to be ‘mere mehboob mein ky nahin’ and ‘hum panchhi mastane’. Love pacifist’s, lalitha’s and karthik’s picks too. One I might want to add because I just saw it is this one from ‘aaye din bahar ke’

    Thanks for the Bombai ka babu song for Dev Anand. It’s one of my favourite films and one of my favourite songs. Such saheli spirit!

    Incidentally, I was supposed to meet Dev Sahab in the coming week. I did meet him three years ago and he was so full of energy and vigour. They say that you should never meet your heroes but I’m glad I got to meet him.


    • “They say that you should never meet your heroes but I’m glad I got to meet him.”

      That is all the tribute he needs. Not many heroes can translate, into real life, what made them heroes for others in the first place. I’m glad you got at least one chance to meet Dev Anand. (I had a similar reaction when Shammi Kapoor passed away. My first thought, as self-consolation, was: “At least I was able to write to him and tell him how much I admired him!”)

      I love that song from Aaye Din Bahaar Ke too; I’d forgotten all about it. Wonderful!


      • You are so lucky to have interacted with Shammi Kapoor. I would have loved to have written to him but I left it too late. Perhaps that’s we can learn from both Shammiji and Dev Sahab, is not to take life for granted and always live in the moment.
        Thanks for the post Madhu.
        PS I’ve read the first few stories in your book. The historical detail and characterizations are so interesting. Information and entertainment in one- just like your blog. Will have to go and get your first book.


        • Yes, I was lucky to have been able to write to Shammiji – that brief e-mail of his (he was very sweet!) is deeply treasured. :-)

          Thank you for telling me you’re finding my book interesting! You’ve made my day with that compliment.


  8. So many Saheli songs that I love and adore. Almost all the the movies in 60s had a girly song to start the movie, signalling that the girl is now a grown-up and ready to fall in love. And as the songs in 60s movies were usually good, it is indeed hard to pick favorites. I do like your choices a lot.

    I would have added the Arzoo song, it is a particular favorite.


    • Thank you, Ava!

      Oddly enough, when I was compiling this list, I was thinking along the same lines that you’ve mentioned – about a girly song that signals, at the start of the movie, that the girl’s all grown up and ready to be in love… but are there any saheli songs that feature little girls? I’ve come across several songs that occur in the hero and heroine’s past – for example, Bachpan ke din bhula na dena – but those are obviously songs between a boy and a girl.

      Can anyone think of ‘little saheli‘ songs?


  9. I couldn’t believe it when I read the news last night. :( I’m glad I met him once – like Anoushka, even I’d heard that you should never meet your heroes because they never live up to your mental image. But he did. Now, of the golden trinity, only Yousefsaab is left. And he’s ailing too.

    I like the post on Saheli songs – congrats, Anoushka for coming up with so unique a theme. And congrats, Madhu for rising to the occasion (and why would I think otherwise?). You have already listed many of my favourites – the song from Mere Mehboob is a favourite, though my instinctive reaction is the same as yours: those two are complimenting Rajendra Kumar?? While Tum jeeyo hazaaron saal is not a favourite, I love the picturisation. My favourites from your list apart from the Mere Mehboob song, are: Banke panchhi gaaye pyar ka tarana, Dekhne mein bhola hai, and Hum panchhi mastane (thanks to pacifist for introducing me to that song).

    Songs that are not in the post and that I haven’t seen in the comments yet (I may have missed them):

    This one from Mere Huzoor:

    and does this count as a ‘saheli’ song?

    A very very pretty Meena Kumari (definitely NOT tragedy queen here – I love the faces she makes) – perfect sakhi song:

    From the same film (With the added bonus of having Dev Anand)


    • I don’t much care for the song from Mere Huzoor – though I like Mala Sinha a lot (and the title song from the film was nice), this is one I don’t care for, even though it fits the saheli bill perfect. But I love the Sanam songs – especially Dil le gaya jee koi. SO cute. :-)

      Is Chup-chup khade ho zaroor koi baat hai actually a saheli song? I haven’t seen Badi Bahen (Greta had written a scathing review of the film, so I’ve never watched it), but are the singer and the two musicians actually friends of the heroine, or are they performers?


      • Madhu, I’m not really sure about the Chup chup khadi ho song – if I remember right, they are banjarans (who often pop put of the woodwork to sing songs in Hindi films, never mind that they are not anywhere on the scene otherwise!). However, they are also around to sing another song in the movie, so I’m not sure. Sorry. I saw this so long ago, I have absolutely no recollection of the film at all. And no, watching the song did nothing to trigger my memory.


        • I used to think I’d like to watch the film someday, just because the songs were so nice. But Greta’s review warned me off. Maybe I’ll content myself with watching the songs on Youtube.


    • I’d never heard (let alone seen) that one before. Very nice song, Anu – thank you for that. I am, in any case, rather partial to Suraiya. There’s something so likeable about her. :-)


    • That’s another song I’ve never seen (though I think I’ve heard it). It reminded me – what with the name of the film, and the scenario, with the sakhis teasing the newly-married bride – of the saheli concept in, say, the royal houses of Rajasthan, where sahelis (young ladies in waiting) would accompany the bride to her new home and actually stay with her. The Saheliyon ki Baadi in Udaipur was laid out as a pleasure-ground and garden, specifically for the Maharani and her sahelis.


  10. Great list of songs, love #1, #2, #5, #7, #8 & #9 & the Bambai Ka Babu Song. Racked my brains but cannot come up with a Saheli song, the closest I came is several women-only dance songs like
    “Allh Bachaye Naujawano Se”. And several other Helen, Jayashree T, Meena T etc. songs, but I doubt they qualify.
    Looking forward to the Dev Anand tribute.


    • Nah, Allah bachaaye naujawaanon se wouldn’t qualify, because it’s a performance, and Nimmi’s character is simply onstage with a bunch of women who may be fellow dancers, but aren’t her friends.

      On the other hand, there’s this song-and-dance, performed by Jayshree T, which is a performance all right, but because she’s singing and dancing for her friend’s engagement – and because the words of the song involve a lot of sahelis – I’d classify as a saheli song:

      Asha gayi Usha gayi from Paraya Dhan:


  11. Thanks to Anoushka for coming up with this great theme. There are so many good songs on this theme. Majority of them I hardly know.
    I couldn’t write much today morning, since I was caught by the big urge to write a post in Dev’s memory. Looking forward to your tribute.

    My two paise to the post:
    aaj mere man me sakhi from Aan

    jab dil ko sathaye gam from Sargam

    mang me bhar le rang from Mujhe Jeene Do with Waheeda Rehman

    well, here they are more than sakhis and it doesn’t fall in your time category but still it is a beautiful song
    man kyu behka ri behka from Utsav


    • Nice suggestions, harvey! The song from Sargam was a new one for me – I’d never heard it before.

      Mann kyon behka re behka used to be heard very often when Utsav was released. I remember liking it a lot – I still do. And what’s to prevent women who’re colleagues from being sahelis? So yes, other than the fact that it’s from beyond the era I focus on, this would’ve fitted with the theme! Lovely song, thank you. :-)


      • Well in Utsav they are not really colleagues, they are in fact so to say rivals, one is the wife, the other the souten. But both are quite liberal-minded about it, without being melodramatic about it.


        • Ah. My mistake. I’ve never seen Utsav in its entirety – bits and pieces, songs, stuff like that. So I was way off as far the context of this song was concerned!

          But yes, it is a lovely song, even though they may not be sakhis in the true sense of the word.


  12. Fabulous post! Awesome songs….love the songs from Dek Kabira Roya, Anari, Padosan, Insaan Jaag Utha and Shagun. Had not heard the song from Dahej before.The only saheli songs that I thought I knew were the ones from Dil Apna Preet Parai, Humjoli, Arzoo and Mere Mehboob!
    Just thought of one more, though it’s not from pre-70’s but a 1970 film named Samaj ko Badal Daalo. Picturisation is little OTT, I still like the song – Tum apni saheli ko itna bata do


    • Thank you, sunheriyaadein! Yes, the Dahej song is rather little-known – I probably wouldn’t have even heard of it if I hadn’t watched the film and liked the songs.

      Tum apni saheli ko itna bata do was a new one for me! I’d never heard of it. Pretty unusual song, actually. Even though Hindi film heroes do occasionally take the help of the heroine’s sahelis to get into her good books, it doesn’t usually go to this extent! (Frankly, in this case, I thought the saheli was prettier than the heroine!)


      • I don’t know who the saheli is, but the girl he is in love with, is Sharada – a very popular actress in Malayalam (though she was originally from Hyderabad). She’s a fantastic actress – not usually known for being the glam doll.


          • No, no, definitely not theSharda – wasn’t she Shankar’s crush? No,this one is a National Award winning actress from the south. She is originally from Andhra Pradesh, but made her name in Malayalam films with strong female characters, and very good performances; when she went back to her native industry, they put her into a poilce officer’s uniform and gave her the ‘feminist’ roles. :) She found it all very amusing.


  13. 1)Jurmana:lata:rakhee:”Ai sakhi raadhike, baawri ho gayee”
    2)Kahaani kismet ki:rekha,jayahsree.t.:Kab tak na doge dil
    3)Aaya saawan jhoomke:Lata:asha parekh:Rama duhayee,raamaa duhaayee
    4)Paras:asha bhsle:rakhee:Sajnaa ke saamne main tho rahoongi chhup chhupp
    5)Basant bahaar:lata,asha:Kar gayaa re,kar gayaare
    6)Main tulsi aangan ki:Lata,asha:Chhaap tilak sab leeni re, mose nainaa ladaaike:laxmikant pyarelal
    7)Parwana:Khaan tu chali, piyaa ki gali:Parveena sultana,asha bhonsle(yogita bali)
    8)Khushboo:Bechaara dil kya karein, saawan jale,badhon jale:asha:Farida jala, hemamalini
    ***9)Ek chaadar maili si:asha bhosle and others:Mar gayee mar gayee,main tho wohi pe mar gayee:anu malik(hemamalini,shammi,geetha siddharth)
    10)pyaar hi pyaar:vyjayanthimala:sakhiyaan sakhiyaan,meri akhiyaan akhiyaan
    11)Junoon:asha,varsha bhosle:saawan ki aayee bahaar re:deepti naval, nafisa ali,jennifer kendell,sushma seth
    12)Prem rog:lata:padmini kolhapure,kiran vairale:Ye galiyaan ye chaubaraa
    13)Main sundar hoon:lata:leena chandavarkar:tujhe dil ki baat bataa doon, nahin nahin
    14)Namkeen:asha:sharmila tagore,kiran vairale,shabana azmi:aankhi chali baanki chali, chowrangee mein bankee chali, pant bakam, …tora


  14. 1)Heer ranjha:(directed by Chetan anand):madan mohan:”Naache ang ve,chhalke rang ve…..”
    (shamshad begum & co)(kamini kaushal, achala sachdev,shaukat kaifi and many other female character artiestes)

    2)Pavitra paapi:Prem dhawan:shada shadak dil, kare dhak dhak :tanuja,neetu singh


  15. The only sakhi song that comes to mind is “sun ri sakhi hole hole…rama duhai” from Aaya Sawan Jhoom Ke. Asha P. looks like she would be a great sakhi to have.

    PS. Tum jiyo hazaron saal is Asha not Geeta Dutt.


    • Hey bhagwaan. I am feeling so embarrassed about the Asha Bhonsle-Geeta Dutt mix-up. I know exactly why that happened, though. When I was a child, my favourite LP among my parents’ vast collection was a ‘Best of Geeta Dutt’ one – and it included Tum jiyo hazaaron saal. Now, a little research has revealed that Geeta did in fact record a version of the song, though the one (as you rightly pointed out) in the film is the version Asha recorded. Correcting that right now. Thanks!

      I like Rama duhaai too. :-) Cute – I’d forgotten all about it.


      • Madhu, do you still have the LP? Because while Geeta did originally record this song, I don’t believe any record of her version exists. For years, Geeta was improperly credited for Asha’s version and all the compilations/collections that feature “tum jiyo hazaaron saal” actually have the Asha version even if they credit Geeta!


        • Shalini, I have a cd compilation of Geeta Dutt’s that has the Geeta Dutt version. I played it just yesterday. And I checked out the film version to make sure that the audio version was actually Geeta and not Asha -mistakenly credited. :)


        • Shalini, my parents have the LP, but their record player conked out years ago, and they disposed of it. It might just be the actual recording, firstly because it was on a ‘Best of Geeta Dutt’ album, and secondly, because it wasn’t a ‘bought-from-a-store-LP’; my grandfather used to work as a sound recordist for HMV in Calcutta, and this was one of the records he brought home from work as the freebies they were allowed to choose. So it just may be the one.


  16. You’re right about Tum jiyo hazaaron saal, Shalini. I missed that when I read through the post early this morning. Interestingly enough, SD had two female solos in Asha’s voice (one for Nutan – Kali Ghata Chhaye and one for the birthday song); Geeta had two solos, Bachpan ke din picturised on Shashikala (he did use Asha to hum for Nutan), and the lori: Nani Kali Sone Chali; and his favourite Lata was nowhere in the picture – was this one of the times she had a tiff with Burmanda and refused to sing for him?


      • Yup, I realised that when Shalini pointed it out. I’d grown up listening to the Geeta Dutt version – on an LP my parents owned – and automatically assumed that hers was the version in the film too.


  17. Good list! And I am very happy that you started out with my all-time favorite saheli scene and saheli pair :) , even if there isn’t quite a song to match. I’m going to think this one over and maybe come back with more, but for right now, I wanted to post this song from Sunehre Din, which is also my all-time favorite car song and one of my favorite battle-of-the-sexes songs:

    There were also a few nice saheli songs with Rehana and Cuckoo in Dilruba. Here’s a good one with dear departed Dev looking on:


    • One of the first films I rechecked when I was compiling this list was Anmol Ghadi, because even though I couldn’t remember a Suraiya-Noor Jehan duet (that would’ve been quite something!), I hoped there was something there that I’d forgotten about… but anyway, they were there in that sweet scene, so I decided I might as well begin the post with a screen cap of them.

      Both the songs – from Sunehre Din and Dilruba – were new to me, but I loved them. The first one because it was such a delightful one (and yes, I agree it’s a super car song too!… someone should try doing a ‘battle of the sexes songs’ list). The Dilruba song because both Rehana and Dev Anand look so gorgeous. Dev Anand looks especially like Gregory Peck in this scene.


    • before you boot me off your blog in disgust :)

      Won’t happen. Not with you, Anu – and not with anyone else who has something interesting, amusing, sensible or at least not boring to contribute! :-D

      I love Bechara dil kya kare. Love Farida Jalal, love Hema Malini in a lot of her films – and especially in Khushboo.


    • I remember you writing about this song and posting the link on your blog, Richard! (I think I put in my two cents with that Humjoli song on your post, too). Nice song – one of the few things about this film that I liked.


    • Another new one for me! – though when the song began, I had a feeling I’d heard it before. But I later realised that I probably hadn’t, and had almost certainly been mixing up those first two lines with some other song… probably Chali chali re patang meri chali re.


  18. This was some challenge… and a really commendable effort!! I have not heard any of the songs except the Padosan one….

    Two songs immediately came to my mind after reading the theme…
    One- Bechara dil kya kare (Saw Khushboo just 3-4 months back)- I see it has been mentioned by Anu Warrier above… nice..

    And the other Piya Piya (for Har dil jo pyaar karega)… of course it is way beyond 1970 so it won’t qualify here :)


    • Even Bechara dil kya kare wouldn’t qualify; it’s too well into the 70s, both as far as when it was produced is concerned, and in its general look and feel (Pakeezah, though it was released in 1972, I still think of as a 60s film – there’s something about it that’s very classic 50s-60s). But I love Bechara dil kya kare, anyway – lovely song!


  19. I am absolutely stumped by this huge collection of saheli songs. I remember as a child I often heard one song on the radio, this seemed to be quite favorite on radio Ceylon and Vividh Bharati. It was ‘Sakhyaan sakhyaan mori ankhyaan lad gayee ek jaadugar se’ sung in the nasal accent so typical of the forties and fifties, I remember mimicking the nasal accent and ever since in our home such songs were called the sakyaan sakhyaan songs. I searched for this song on you tube but could not find it.


  20. That’s a cute little anedcote, Shilpi! I tried hunting for that song too after you wrote about it, and the only one I could find with the same lyrics was this one, from Pyaar hi Pyaar:

    Is it the one? It is oddly nasal in the “O sakhiyaan sakhiyaan” bit. :-)


    • Okay I guess I was making a mistake I thought it was a black white film from way before our time. But obviously I was wrong I was confusing this one with some old song, but I guess this is the one I heard as a kid, I was little one then so I guess I can be forgiven the confusion.


      • You can certainly be forgiven for thinking it was from some really old film, Shilpi, not just because you were a kid, but because that song actually does have a somewhat nasal quality to it in places – it doesn’t sound much like a song from the 60s.


  21. There are two beautiful songs from 1964 film Sati Savitri.
    Unfortunately I can’t find the video clips for them.
    This one is really great – with all that advice! :-D
    I think the clip would have been fun to watch. It’s by Lata and Kamal Barot (?)

    This other one is really really beautiful. I love it. Also without the clip. It’s a smooth flowing song beautifully sung by Lata.


  22. hi
    I want to add one song from adhikar
    Usha kiran and her friends are performing on stage, in college gathering it seems!
    it may fit the theme.
    its funny also, shows women liberation also, in the end it turns patriotic as well

    ths song is B A M A Phd, by asha bhosle & chorus

    watch it fully, if u get time
    i think u will enjoy it!


    • Nice song, I liked it! but I don’t think this really qualifies as a saheli – they are only on stage, so may or may not be friends (they may be just co-dancers/singers). If you look at all the songs on my list, they’re very specifically songs between characters who are actually friends, not onstage and pretending to be a group.


  23. hi,
    few more
    aanchal ko udane do from picnic by asha bhosle ,M D- S Mohinder

    i am not sure, if the following one qualifies or not.
    i havnt seen the movie, but from the song , it seems some dooj function is going on and the heroine’s friends r teasing her.
    its b saroja devi i think!
    and the sahilis are, madhumati and others.
    Sajan salona maang loji from dooj ka chand!

    i hope u enjoy these two songs as well


  24. few more,
    as i read the nearly the whole page of thoughts,
    i could still remember many songs, familiar to me missing!
    so i want to post them now…………….

    Tooti footi gadi from nirala
    absolutely delightful song by lata, very sweet tune,. an dthe sweetest madhubala and handsome dev anand.

    aayi baad e bahare leke from noor jahan, again my favourite by suman kalyanpur.

    a typical saheli song, with all the ladies playing in garden, enjoying themselves!

    Hawa mein dil dole from saiyan
    again beautiful madhubala, singing in lata’s voice with music by sajjad.
    a happy song by sajjad for a change!


  25. katile katile nashile nashile, from zindagi aur khwab

    though not my favourite, it turns too sharp and loud at places, really high pitched, that it irritates me at times!
    but for meena kumari we can watch it!
    and it fits in the theme so well.


    • Yes, this one fits – and I don’t like it, either. Hard to imagine that this was from the same film as featured the wonderful Na jaane kahaan hum thhe na jaane kahaan tum thhe.


      • yes,
        i too like “Na jane kahan tum the” very much!
        have u noticed one thing,
        dattaram in late 50s,and early 60s, has used mukesh for solos and manna da for duets in good many films,
        zindagi aur khwab, santaan, parvarish, shreeman satyavadi to name a few!


  26. i was wondering whether u will qualify, aaja aayi bahar from rajkumar as saheli song
    as sadhna is surrounded by sahelis, but those do not sing


    • Not really. The sahelis are there, but it’s not as if they’re singing the song to each other, or teasing Princess Sangeeta, or anything. They’re just dancing extras.


  27. and this one jab din hassen aur dil jawan from adalat!

    as it has sahelis and boys as well!

    though the scenario does appear to fit in the theme, what do u say?


    • No, I wouldn’t call this a saheli song. Just a bunch of people at a picnic. The focus, as I’ve mentioned in the introduction, should be on the relationship between women friends.


  28. a few more,
    before posting let me say thank u for posting reply separately to each post!

    Pakadi gayi pakadi gayi from barat 1960

    maang mein bhar le rang sakhi ri from mujhe jeene do

    i just adore this song!

    and last but one, from balam
    duiya walon mujhe batao

    i dont know, whether suraiya and usha kiran are sisters in the movie or friends, but i like the song!

    again a duet by lata suraiya from shokhiyan
    door desh se aja re

    here again i have no idea about the relationship the two characters share!


  29. “before posting let me say thank u for posting reply separately to each post!”

    You have no idea how much effort that takes, especially on a post that is so old!

    Nice songs, thanks.


  30. oh god!
    i wrote that completely from the bottom of my heart!
    as i felt so nice that u answered them separately!
    that obviously wasnt to make u uncomfortable, or to hurt u.
    oh plz! dont misunderstand.
    that wasnt my intention
    i say sorry if that has hurt u!


  31. hi,
    two songs from mem didi, that i think fit the theme!
    raaton ko jab neend

    and bachpan o bachpan

    both the songs are good.
    i actually heard the last one on anu ji’s blog, in songs of innocence!
    i liked it!
    similarly, i heard Mat Ja Mat ja from chhoti si mulaqat, in the same post
    I liked it so much that, i kept on humming it for the whole day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  32. hi, one more song to add…….
    from paigham 1959
    hum ranrangili titaliyan

    one of the uncommon duets, by asha & suman kalyanpur


  33. hi, a song from angulimal, tere man mein kaun……………
    for a change,
    nimmi is seen as a rich woman,
    smiling for a change, instead of weeping!

    oh, all vdos are of mediocre quality………..


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