Movie – Baap Re Baap (1955)
The song – Ab yeh bata jayen kahan – appears in the 1955 Kardar Productions’ hit musical comic caper Baap Re Baap (Oh, My God!) directed and produced by A R Kardar. The movie starred late Kishore Kumar, late Chand Usmani, Smriti Biswas, late Jayant, late Ulhas and late Leela Mishra.
Kunwar Ashok (Kishore Kumar) has just returned after studying in a foreign country for 5 years. His parents are overly protective and treat his one sneeze as pneumonia. On the night when he is compelled to rest due to his ‘ill health’, he sees a flower-girl Kokila (Chand Usmani) singing and dancing. He falls in love with her, instantly and chases her around. He convinces her into falling in love with him. Kunwar has also convinced her mother that he would be marrying her daughter.
Kunwar’s parents advertise in several newspapers for a bride for Kunwar. Kunwar makes sure that the applications from all the girls are rejected and this happens with a lot of comic chaos. Having created the chaos and got the girls and their families out of his home, Kunwar is happy and promises Kokila to have dinner and breakfast with her at her home. But, when Kunwar is about to go out to meet Kokila, Kunwar’s family friends, Colonel Jung Bahadur (Ulhas) and his wife (Leela Mishra) are visiting them with their daughter Roopa (Smriti Biswas). Roopa is in love with Kunwar and whisks him back to his room, compelling him to spend time with her. In the meanwhile, Kokila is decked up and waiting for him.
Kokila is a good girl. But, Roopa is a more confident and educated girl. Is that bad? Why does education only make good men? Why can’t educated girls be good? This was the 1950s. But, in several TV serials, this is the situation that is shown. Education is not good? But, why? Education gives the students a mind of their own. They can decide what is good or bad for them. This fact has to sink in. Then only we will get good thoughtful scripts for movies and TV serials alike.
The moment Kunwar can get out of the house, he gives them all the slip and reaches Kokila’s home to have food she had prepared for him. Kunwar’s mother finds him there and takes him away. Kunwar’s father comes to Kokila’s home and throws her mother and her out of it. Then, he burns their house. Not having a shelter that night itself, they leave the place. Kunwar is compelled by his parents to get married to Roopa. But, Roopa and her parents have intentions of their own. They want Kunwar to shift to their home, once the marriage takes place. But, Kunwar’s father is against it.
Kunwar tells everybody that he had decided to get married to Roopa. That makes Kunwar’s father angry and he throws his son out of the house. On the way out, Kunwar insists that Roopa come with him to a street-dwelling as his wife. Roopa refuses and her father is angry with Kunwar’s decision. This is ridiculous. Kokila is good because she is ready to stay with Kunwar in a hutment or wherever he wants her to live.
But, Roopa is educated, so she refuses to stay in a hut. Does this mean that all educated people are bad? Roopa could have a valid reason for not living in a hut. There are practical difficulties associated with it. At the same time, education does not make you as arrogant as is shown by Roopa. Roopa’s character is unbelievable. There are several humble but educated people around. She could have tried to gently reason with Kunwar about his decision. Not all educated girls will decide to stay with their parents in the given situation.
Anyways, Kunwar gets down from the car and goes around looking for Kokila and her mother. Kokila begins to sing this song at this time.
Song – Ab yeh bata jayen kahan
Jan Nisar Akhtar and O P Nayyar have been credited with the lyrics and music of this song – Ab yeh bata jayen kahan, respectively.
The girl sings, “Now that we have been thrown out of our shelter, tell us where should we go.”
Video – Ab yeh bata jayen kahan
The cinematography was by Dwarka Divecha and K Ramanlal operated the camera.
The video opens with Chand Usmani beginning the song. The actor playing her mother and she are walking on a village path, sadly. Tears are rolling down her cheeks. All through the song, the 2 actors are seen walking through the village path. The song peters out and the video ends as they are still walking on the path.
Asha Bhonsle sang the playback for Chand Usmani in the song Ab yeh bata jayen kahan.
This is a typically filmi sad song by the heroine having been rendered homeless, appealing to God to give them the right direction. The song and the artists are very good. The video is ok to watch.