Bakkamma Bakkamma – Mahmood/Sharda/Mohd. Rafi – Shankar-Jaikishan –Mahmood/Helen | Shatranj (1969)


Movie – Shatranj (1969)

The song Bakkamma Bakkamma was featured in Gemini Studios’ spy thriller Shatranj (1969), produced by S S Vasan and N N Sippy and directed by S S Vasan. The movie starred Rajendra Kumar, Waheeda Rahman, Mahmood, Shashikala, Helen, Achala Sachdev, Madan Puri, Agha, etc.

The movie begins with a helicopter taking away prisoners from an enemy country. The invisible leader of the country assigns a couple of his henchmen to find out more about the man, who gets the prisoners released. They decide to ensnare him through a dancer Meena (Waheeda Rahman), who is in Hong Kong for a dance performance. The man is Jay (Rajendra Kumar). But, it turns out that after convincing Meena’s father, he travels to China’s mainland to contact her. Meena’s mother has been taken hostage to make her do their bidding. Jay makes his way to Meena’s house apparently without much trouble. Jay discreetly gives her a letter from her father as a reference. Soon, he appears in the house she lives in and gives indirect indications of his intentions to take her back to India, with her mother.

Jay’s assistant Aamir (Mahmood) has a knack of disguising as Jay’s duplicate, by wearing a mask. But, for a mask to work for this purpose, the skull of both the parties has to be similar in structure. Mahmood wearing a mask and appearing like Rajendra Kumar looks illogical, because their skulls don’t match. Anyways, Jay sends a message to Aamir through a colleague Salma alias Badkamma (Helen) to give the impression that Jay has left India just then in his private helicopter. Aamir does as he is told, alleviating the suspicion on Jay.

After reaching China, Aamir performs this song with Salma at a night club.

Song – Bakkamma Bakkamma

Kiran Kalyani has penned the lyrics and Shankar-Jaikishan has composed the tune of the song Bakkamma Bakkamma.

The man asks, “Bakkamma, where are you going? Stay close to me.” The girl replies similarly calling him Chinnanna.

Video – Bakkamma Bakkamma

Director of photography is K H Kapadia. Dance choreography is by B Hiralal-Satyanarayan-Surya Kumar-P L Raj.

The video begins with Mahmood playing with a bunch of colorful balloons. Several people are sitting at the tables surrounding the dance area. Mahmood looks around for someone. Then, he calls out for Bakkamma. Helen comes out of hiding and meets Mahmood. He begins to sing and she joins him in the song.

There is a change of dress and the pair continues to dance. Rajendra Kumar comes with Kamal Kapoor and sits at a table. The lead actor tells his companion that he would be ready to rescue the mother and daughter and leave the country. And Kamal Kapoor says that he has to pick up some goods and would soon be ready to ferry them back home.

There is another change of dress. Shashikala enters in a steward’s dress and her eyes fall on Rajendra Kumar. He spies Shashikala and becomes alert. Rajendra Kumar drops the lamp on his table. Mahmood and Helen are also warned. They stop her from going out of the room and make her stumble and fall. With that ends the song and the video.


Mahmood, Sharda and Mohammad Rafi sang Bakkamma Bakkamma for Mahmood and Helen. Rajendra Kumar, Kamal Kapoor, Shashikala and others look on.

Cultural Influence

The song has a strong Western Cabaret influence on it. The song and the artists are good. The video is watchable for Mahmood’s antics and Helen’s grace.


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