O nigahen mastana – Kishore/Asha – S D Burman – Dev/Nutan | Paying Guest (1956)


Today’s first post is the analysis of the song, O nigahen mastana, from the Bollywood movie, Paying Guest (1956). The song has been analyzed based on its context and visualization.

Movie – Paying Guest (1956)

The song, O nigahen mastana, appeared in the S Mukherji Production’s romcom Paying Guest (1956), produced by Shashadhar Mukherji and directed by Subodh Mukherji. The movie starred Dev Anand, Nutan, Shobha Khote, etc.

Ramesh Kumar (Dev Anand) is a homeless advocate and he gets into a tiff with a college-student and dance teacher Shanti (Nutan) while living in a previous rental home. He gets thrown out of the house due to that. Ramesh follows Shanti and finds out that her home is available for rent but her father would allow only elderly men. Ramesh disguises as an old Muslim man ‘Mirza’ and gets the space as a paying guest. He then continues to follow Shanti and complains to ‘Mirza’.

He then continues to follow Shanti and lands at her college debating event. During the debate, Shanti is talking about love being more important for marriage. While her college-mate, Chanchal (Shobha Khote) speaks for wealth being more important for marriage. Ramesh visits Shanti at night and she goes to ‘Mirza’ for help. ‘Mirza’ beats up Ramesh, who leaves, not before… not before Shanti starts feeling something for Ramesh. She visits the art shop owned by Ramesh’s friend (Sajjan) where Ramesh is lying ‘unconscious’ when one of her students tell her about it.

But then, Holi reveals to everyone that ‘Mirza’ is none other than Ramesh when Shanti and her friends apply color to his face and the false beard and moustache come off. He is thrown out of the house. However, while throwing him out, Shanti’s father suffers a heart attack and Ramesh helps her call the doctor and take care of the older man.

After 2 days, Shanti’s father comes to and the doctor tells him that Ramesh had taken care of him. The older man is not very happy because Ramesh had left without paying the rent and tells Shanti to get it. Shanti is visibly elated and visits the art shop. Ramesh’s friend tells her that Ramesh had left a suicide letter. Shanti rushes to the pond near her home to look for him and jumps into it. Ramesh, who has been watching her from a treetop, saves her. Since then, they begin to date.

Chanchal marries the elderly Public Prosecutor Dayal (Gajanan Jagirdar) for his money. She meets Shanti to make her friend jealous and finds her with Ramesh. When Chanchal brags about her husband’s wealth, Ramesh argues that love is more important. Chanchal returns to her husband’s home and realizes that her husband does not have time for her.

On the other hand, Shanti and Ramesh sing this song.

Song – O nigahen mastana

The lyrics of the song, O nigahen mastana, were penned by Majrooh Sultanpuri and the music was set by S D Burman.

The man sings, “O Beautiful Eyed Damsel! Look, the weather is beautiful. Hit my heart with love darts.”

Video – O nigahen mastana

The director of photography was Dronacharya.

The video opens with Dev Anand beginning the song and Nutan looking up at the camera. She is so beautiful. After he sings the first stanza, she joins in the song humming and begins to dance.

He follows her and catches hold of her hand. She folds her hand in front of him and he playfully pulls her hair. Nutan goes and sits on a chair. He also sits on an adjacent chair and they place their feet on a stool, playfully.

They get up and prance around a little. Then, he catches hold of the edge of her sari and she tries to pull it back. He covers her face with the edge of the sari and then covers his face with it, acting like a girl.

Dev Anand covers both their heads with the edge of the sari and moves with his classic stride. She moves along with him. They uncover their heads. It appears that they are in a studio, on the sets of a terrace.

Shobha Khote is present at the place and does not seem to be quite pleased. Blissfully ignorant of the fact, the lead pair continues to sing and is engrossed in themselves. The song peters out and the video ends as Dev Anand leads Nutan away.


Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhonsle sang this song for Dev Anand and Nutan. Shobha Khote is also seen in the video.

Cultural Influence

This song is a romantic number between the hero and the heroine. I love this Kishore-Asha croon. The song and the artists are fantastic. The video is watchable for Dev Anand’s classic stride.


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