Mere naina saawan bhadon – Lata/Kishore – R D Burman – Rajesh Khanna/Hema Malini | Mehbooba (1976)

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This is a haunting melody from the school of R D Burman for a movie with the rebirth format. This song appears several times in the movie. But there is a distinct male version and a female version. I have chosen the male version.

Movie: This song appears in the movie Mehbooba (Beloved) directed by Shakti Samanta and produced by Mushir-Riaz. The star-cast included late Rajesh Khanna, Hema Malini, Yogita Bali, Prem Chopra, etc.

Suraj (Rajesh Khanna) is a singer and is presented a veena (a stringed musical instrument) by his fiancée. The moment the veena comes to his home, he hears a haunting melody during nights and also notices that the name ‘Ratna’ etched on the veena. One day, on a journey to a stage show, he is stuck in heavy rains in an unknown place. Then he goes to a small motel to stay. There he meets a woman called Ratna (Hema Malini).

At night, he finds Ratna singing the same song that he regularly hears during nights. She takes him to a distant palace. Automatically, he follows her and enters the deserted palace. He calls her but gets to know from the old keeper of the palace that Ratna died more than 100 years ago. But people felt that she was still haunting the palace.

The portrait of Ratna reminds him of their previous lives. Going to flashback, it is shown that in that birth he was known as Prakash, chief singer of the royal court. He had fallen in love with Ratna, the beautiful and gifted court dancer. She is also in love with him. But both have issues in marrying each other. Prakash has been promised to Jamuna (Yogita Bali) in his childhood. Ratna was destined to become the royal courtesan and so could not marry anyone. Eventually, they elope but are fatally wounded on their way and promise each other that they would meet again.

When the flashback ends, Suraj recovers from the initial shock and encounters the feeling of loneliness and confusion. Soon he meets a gipsy, Jhumri (Hema Malini again). He realizes that she is the reincarnated Ratna and makes her remember her past life and her love for Prakash through this song.

Song: The music for this hit song has been composed by R D Burman and the lyrics have been penned by Anand Bakshi. This song is based on Raga Shivranjani.

The man tries to make the girl remember their past lives when they were in love with each other, through this song.

Video: Cinematography is by Aloke Dasgupta.

The video opens with Hema Malini feeding a cow with hay and the song beginning in the background. She feels uneasy. Rajesh Khanna is playing a guitar sitting on a rock near a river and simultaneously singing. Hema Malini walks to the place where he is sitting. She comes close to him and stands there. Thus the video ends.

Artists: The playback singer is Kishore Kumar, while the onscreen performances are by Hema Malini and Rajesh Khanna.

Cultural Influence: The hero sings that tears are flowing from his eyes like rain. But his heart is thirsty for his beloved. The heroine hears the song and goes to see him. This song is the highlight of the movie, which talks about rebirth. The song is good and rendered well by Kishore Kumar. The video is watchable.

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