In the backward 1990s, aback I was in college, I foolishly fell in adulation with Hindi blur songs. Soon, I came to access hundreds of audio cassettes. On some of these cassettes, I apprehend the name of the artist Neeraj, who had accounting such soulful numbers as Jeevan Ki Bagiya Mehkegi, Choodi Nahin Ye Mera Dil Hai, Jaise Radha Ne Mala Japi Shyam Ki and Dil Aaj Shayar Hai. There was a auspicious quality, accuracy and abyss in the lyrics. Neeraj’s songs connected to amuse me alike as I accomplished academy and became a journalist.
Some 20 years later, in 2017, aback I learnt that Neeraj was still alive, I knew I had to account him. But area could I acquisition him? Afterwards authoritative a few queries, I amid a artist who was acquainted with Neeraj. “All you charge do is adeptness Aligarh, you won’t accept any botheration accolade his home,” the artist said. He anesthetized on the adaptable cardinal of Neeraj’s assistant. “Talk to him, it will accomplish things easier.”
Soon, I boarded an Aligarh-bound alternation from Delhi. Indeed, I had little botheration in extensive Neeraj’s home – he seemed absolutely accepted in his hometown. Dressed artlessly in a white belong and a pyjama, he was built-in in the verandah of his house, demography abysmal drags of his bidi. Surrounded by bodies from all walks of activity –the acquisition included a rickshwala, a coffer manager, a agriculturalist and a carnality adjudicator of a university – he seemed at ease. He had aloof alternate from a balladry soiree in Jaipur and was planning to appear one added in Raipur a anniversary later. He was 92.
I was addled by Neeraj’s agog apperception and his adeptness to bethink baby details. From his abettor Ram Singh Yadav, I learnt that Neeraj was able with a acid memory. “He has not alone memorised his absolute balladry but additionally the works of several abundant Indian and adopted poets,” Yadav told me. “He additionally remembers added than 200 adaptable numbers. You aloof accept to acquaint him your adaptable cardinal alert and he’ll never balloon it.”
Neeraj told me about some abnormal incidents from his childhood, including a besom with afterlife on added than one occasion. The aboriginal time, Neeraj about drowned in the apple pond and was pulled out by a devious dog. On addition occasion, Neeraj approved to augment rice to a hooded cobra from his easily alike as his mother watched helplessly from a distance.
Later, Neeraj jumped into the Yamuna for a swim, alone to ascertain that the baptize was actual deep. “When I started drowning, addition bent authority of my legs and flung me on the banks,” Neeraj recalled. “Surprised, I looked at the river. Nobody was pond in it. Till date, I haven’t been able to amount out who adored my life.”
Neeraj had astronomic acceptance in astrometry and horoscopes. “I already backward with above prime abbot Atal Bihari Vajpayee in DAV Academy auberge in Kanpur,” Neeraj said. “He is earlier by a bald nine days, and we generally recited our balladry at gatherings. Once, aback I saw his horoscope, I was abashed to apprehension that it akin my astrometry a lot. As it affronted out, we were agnate in abounding means – we were both poets with acceptable command over the language, we could mesmerise audiences with our oratory, and we alike had anemic legs. There was acclaim in both our lives and we were destined to alive to a accomplished old age.”
Back in 2009, Neeraj had predicted that Vajpayee would die aural a ages of his death. Neeraj anesthetized abroad on July 19, 2018, while Vajpayee died on August 16, 2018. Neeraj had additionally accurately predicted the diseases that would agonize the both of them in their dusk years.
During the abandon struggle, Neeraj abutting a bandage of revolutionaries who accomplished him to use a pistol. However, his mother weaned him abroad from their influence. Alike so, Neeraj couldn’t stop himself from accommodating in the Quit India Movement in 1942, for which he was jailed. The beneficiary told Neeraj that if he apologised, he would be released. “Already 650 agitators out of 700 accept apologised and I accept appear them. Is this how you will get independence?” the beneficiary said. Neeraj replied, “I would rather say 50 bodies still haven’t apologised – they aren’t afraid by the punishment. There’s alone one Gandhi, not 20.” Pleased by Neeraj’s response, the beneficiary appear him and the blow of the agitators afterwards three days.
Among the Hindi blur music composers Neeraj formed with, he rated SD Burman’s aptitude the highest. “He alone publicity altogether and kept himself absorbed in music throughout the day,” Neeraj recalled.
Neeraj and SD Burman formed calm for several years, creating such agreeable hits as Gambler, Sharmeelee and Tere Bald Sapne. “Once dada [SD Burman] asked me to address a song to aback the blessed sentiments of a abundant woman assured her aboriginal child,” Neeraj said. “I gave him Jeevan Ki Bagiya Mehkegi. He was so animated that he began jumping with excitement. The beatitude that shone in his eyes was the greatest accolade I got in my life.”
Neeraj additionally formed with Shanker-Jaikishan. “Jaikishan was a absolute gentleman, while Shanker was actual arrogant,” Neeraj said. Already Shanker told Neeraj that one of his songs for the blur Kanyadaan (1968) could not be used. The acumen was article else, Neeraj suspects – Shanker capital to alter Neeraj with addition lyricist. An affronted Neeraj tore up the song he had accounting for the composer.
Rajinder Bhatia, the ambassador of Kanyadaan, told Neeraj that he should address a song that would force Shanker into submission. Neeraj wrote what became Likhe Jo Khat Tujhe backward into the night, and Shanker was bowled over by the lyrics. Rajinder Bhatia able Neeraj his convertible as a reward.
At the acme of his popularity, Neeraj alternate to Aligarh in 1973. He had accounting about 130 songs in a amount of bristles years. Unmoved by the allure and balance of appearance business, Neeraj went aback to reciting balladry at gatherings beyond India.
Most bodies anticipate that composition and blur song lyrics are the same, but that is a “complete fallacy”, Neeraj acicular out. “Firstly, the lyrics of a blur song are not apprehend afore the accessible but are recited by characters on the screen. Secondly, blur lyrics are generally accounting to booty the adventure of the blur further. Thirdly, blur lyrics are accounting for accumulation address rather than for the intelligentsia. And finally, blur lyrics are accounting to fit into a banal agreeable tune. Abounding poets approved their duke at autograph lyrics for films but few accept succeeded.”
As I bade Neeraj goodbye, I saw him proposing a bold of cards to one of his acquaintances. Neeraj was absorbed to arena cards every day. Isn’t it a decay of time, I couldn’t advice allurement him. “A bold of cards keeps me in a accompaniment of suspense,” Neeraj replied. “For some time I balloon the apple and its acute problems. It’s important to abstract yourself from worries as generally as you can.”
Neeraj (1925-2018): ‘I grew so abominable in my time, it will booty centuries for me to be forgotten’
Poet and artist Neeraj: ‘Poetry has kept me bagged throughout my life’
11 Anniversary Card Lyrics – anniversary card lyrics
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