Songs With Substance: Sajan Re Jhoot Mat Bolo

| October 18, 2013 | 0 Comments

Teesri Kasam

This series brings alive once again timeless, simple yet soulful classic songs, with their value-enhancing, life-affirming interpretations.

Year 1966. Film-Teesri Kasam. A role of an innocent, simple, honest, rustic, good-at-heart character is not alien to Raj Kapoor but his performance in this film as a bullock cart driver Hiraman is unusual and intense.He in the process of ferrying a luminous nautanki dancer-a travelling courtesan Heerabai (Waheeda Rehman) to a village fare, spends some wonderful moments and falls in love with her charm and mesmerised by her mystical beauty. But will Waheeda Rehman reciprocate his feelings or rob him of his innocence. Is their relationship, seeped in cultural conflicts doomed from beginning? Will the innocence win over the commercial forces forms the heart-wrenching climax that tugs at the heartstrings.

This tale of unrequited love  opens with Raj Kapoor singing  a simple yet soulful song, that not only delineates his persona and character but also spotlights the basic morality and philosophy with which to conduct life.The sombre composition by Shankar-Jaikishen, sung in the melodious voice of Mukesh has lyrics penned by Shailendra

Sajan Re Jhooth Mat Bolo
Khuda Ke Paas Jaana Hai

Don’t speak a lie is one moral diktat that is given to every child from his toddler days by the parents. It also forms one of the Ten Commandments  given to Moses by the Almighty .Life has no escape routes. You can fool people at large, you can sing a lullaby to yourself that everything is hunky-dory inspite of your misdeeds, yet you can’t fool the Almighty- call it what you may, God, your inner self or your Atman.

At the end of the journey you have to leave this planet earth alone-with no one holding your little finger and taking you along.Its such a lonely journey without any tangible means of transportation.

Sajan Re Jhooth Mat Bolo
Khuda Ke Paas Jaana Hai

Na Haathi Hai Na Ghoda Hai,
Wahan Paedal Hi Jana Hai

Generally a normal man’s whole life is spent to acquire, to achieve, to avail at the cost of others. This race to become something is nothing but an expansion of one’s ego  that loves to be measured by the yardstick of Fortune 100 list, Stock options, villas, yachts, jets, cars, hi-fi lifestyle. And man thinks he has become big and powerful. The ignorant fool does not realise that eventually everything will be left behind- pelf, power, position, possessions- everything. Man thinks he owns the possessions but not even a single object or possession has this illusion. They dont accompany him to the other side. His arrogance while alive simply goes to dust when the messenger of death comes knocking.

Tumhare Mehel Chaubaare
Yahin Reh Jayenge Saare
Akad Kis Baat Ki Pyaare
Yeh Sar Phir Bhi Jhukaana Hai
Sajan Re Jhooth…

Laws of Nature make no exceptions. They are relentless in their execution.As you sow so shall you reap is one such eternal law. It may seem that bad deeds are reaping a rich harvest but its just an illusionp, a passing phase. The happening prosperity is due to past good karmas.Once those karmas are exhausted one has to bear with the consequences of their corrupt, evil or sinful ways. Though ends seem to justify means in present day world yet its the means that will  finally emerge victorious.So all the calculations, manipulations are of no use. There is no Big Brother or Mighty God on a throne dispensing justice. All accounts are settled here. Just do good and good will come back to you. Harm done to others will eventually harm you. Its that simple.

Bhalaa Kije Bhalaa Hoga
Buraa Kije Buraa Hoga
Bahi Likh-Likh Ke Kya Hoga
Yahin Sab Kuch Chukana Hai
Sajan Re Jhooth…

Life as such is a nautanki-a leela, a play.But its not lived that way. No doubt the childhood and adolescence are spent in playful activities with no worries about the future. Though this may be a misnomer in present times what with a backbreaking load of studies, peer pressure, competition and stress staring at the innocent children, still the impression and overall effect of childhood is of  making merry and living freely.

Generally the adulthood and young age is a stage of intoxication. One is intoxicated simply with the youth. This makes one chase his dreams with all the power and strength, still the inner self remains sleeping to the giant potential within.

Then there is another extreme as no one is bothered about the looming old age. In our Shastras old age is equated with disease. Its considered that stage of human body’s journey where all senses are gradually shutting down. The flesh becomes weak but Trishna(desire) remains at its peak. Therefore, one cannot fulfil  desires as one could in young age. This causes such helplessness and hopelessness. Still man is made of such material or you could say, he is so enmeshed in transient Maya that he cries the tears of regret in old age- but in vain.This is a never ending story of birth, growing up , getting old and eventually death.

Ladakpan Khel Mein Khoya
Jawaani Neend Bhar Soya
Budhaapa Dekhkar Roya
Wahi Kissa Purana Hai
Sajan Re Jhooth

Shailendra with simple words has conveyed such deep truth about Life. He has shown the futility of keeping single-minded focus on the world external. The key to living life to the hilt lies in what Kabir says : Be in the world but be not worldly. And to life in such a detached fashion and still be involved in dynamic action requires integration. This integrity begins with living life honestly with a determination not to tell a lie and embracing the Golden rule of doing unto others as one wants to be treated oneself.

 Movie : Teesri Kasam

Music Director: Shankar-Jaikishan

Lyricists : Shailendra,Hasrat Jaipuri

Directed By : Basu Bhattacharya

Story & Dialogues : Phanishwar Nath Renu

Produced By : Shailendra


Sajan Re Jhoot Mat Bolo got Shaliendra a nomination for Filmfare Award Best Lyricist award.

Teesri Kasam won the National Award for Best Feature Film.

The film bombed at the box office. Shailendra suffered major financial loss as a producer that led eventually to his untimely death.

Teesri Kasam had one of the best song albums with many of the songs a major hit like Sajanwa Bairi Ho Gaye Hamar, Chalat Musafir Moh Liyo Re, Paan Khayen Saaiyan, Maare Gaye Gulfaam

Waheeda Rehman played the role of a strong, graceful yet whimsical dancer with depth of feelings.

Lachchu Maharaj choreographed songs for the film.

The story by Phanishwer Renu at one level reflected on the women empowerment, denounced child marriages and supported the laws about legal age for marriage

The film captured the rural india in its full rustic charm and was shot on location in Aaria village of Bihar.

Raj Kapoor himself being an established director was sceptical about Basu Bhattacharya’s potential and wondered what he was doing and had his own ideas how to block the scenes. It was Waheeda Rehman who calmed him not to fret and let the new director do the scenes as per his vision.

Although color had come to Indian cinema, the movie was shot in black and white to bring out the right effect of simplicity and rustic innocence of rural India.

The debate still rages had the end of the story been changed at the climax, it would have been a super hit.

Movie was based on a story Marey Gaye Gulfaam by Phanishwar Nath Renu.

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Category: Songs With Substance

About the Author ()

Dhieraj Mohan is Hindi cinema’s keen observer. With earnest interest in its dynamics and constantly changing milieu he revels in dwelling on the discrepancies, idiosyncrasies,contradictions,masala and the formula that defines Bollywood.He is a poet and a screenwriter too,who simply adores Hindi cinema’s chameleon like traits.

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