Main toh Giridhar ke ghar jaaoon…

Geeta Dutt

City- Bombay (Now Mumbai)
Date- 20th july 1972
Place- Harkissondas Hospital,Bombay

Few people were standing in the corridor . Anxiety,sorrow,helplessness and a little hope was clearly writ on their faces.They were all quiet.No one was talking to anyone.Their body language gave away their agony and restlessness.

Suddenly,a Doctor came out of a patient’s room.All ran to him and then stopped.The Doctor’s face and the tears in his eyes told them what they were afraid of.
No one said anything.No one asked anything. The Doctor said, ” I am sorry.She is no more.” He left, dragging his heavy feet.

The end of an Angel had come !
Geeta Dutt was left us for ever !!
Only her memories and the inimitable voice was left behind !!!

Born on 23-11-1930 at Idlapur in Fareedkot District of East Bengal,to a big Zamindar,Devendranath Roy Chaudhury and Amiya Roy Chaudhury,Geeta inherited her mother’s love for music.She learnt Classical Music from Pt.Hirendranath Chaudhury,while studying in an Anglo-Bangla school.

When she was just 12 year old,the family had to run away from East Bengal,to save their lives-leaving all property behind- to Bombay. In Bombay,we all know how Pt. Hanuman Prasad,MD(ex husband of Lalita Pawar) discovered her for playback in Hindi films. Later when S D Burman her her singing,he knew instinctively that this was the voice which make him successful and establish in Bombay. Till then Burman had not succeeded much to his satisfaction. To give her songs in ‘ Do Bhai ‘, he had to convince Chunilal of Filmistan,with great difficulty.

Geeta did not disappoint.’ Mera sunder sapna beet gaya” and ” Yaad karoge” made history and put both Geeta and Burman in Top league overnight.

Do Bhai made other famous composers to sit up and take notice of this new voice. They lined up to give Geeta ‘ Gaaon’-47(Khemchand Prakash), Leela,Shehnai and Saajan-47 ( C.Ramchandra),Geet Govind-47(Gyan Dutt),Actress-48(Shyamsunder),Chunariya-48(Hansraj Behl),Padmini-48(Ghulam Hyder) and Ek thi Larki-49(Vinod).

1950 was Geeta’s year.Many hits came Banwre nain,Har har mahadev and Jogan solidified her position on Top.Composers felt she was inevitable,for their success.

Before recording,Geeta used to sit with Lyricist,understand the words and the implied meanings,then hear the tune from the composer and then sing in her own style. Basically,Geeta was very Gifted and hence with just one rehearsal,she could record the song to the entire satisfaction of all concerned.This made her the darling of the Composers.

Now,the newer MDs like,Hemant kumar,Vasat desai,madan Mohan and O P Nayyar also vied with each others to take Geeta. While doing Baazi,she met Guru Dutt and they got married on 26-5-1953. She was earning thousands of rupees in singing,but that time Guru Dutt was not that successful.Some magazines and Papers,saidthat he married Geeta for her money. Guru Dutt was furious and asked Geeta NOT to sing for others,restricting her to only his films.This supposedly suffocated her and she rebelled aginst it,which affected their relationship further.

Geeta had a liking and flair for acting. In Calcutta,she had acted as a Heroine in bangla film-‘ Badhu baran”. She did get some more offers but once she decided to settle in Bombay she refused all offers. Few people know that in Bombay a Hindi film- ‘ Tera saath hai Pyaara ‘,with Geeta as a Heroine had started,but unfortunately,after few reels,the film got shelved. To give a chance to her and to mend their relationship,Guru Dutt started filming ‘ Gauri” with Geeta as a heroine, a bi-lingual in Bengali and Hindi. However due to resons not known to us,Guru Dutt shelved this Bangla film after shooting a few reels. This made the couple more distanced from each others. We all know the story’s end…..

Somewhere in 1971,there was a programme ” Yaaden Shakeel ki” in Bhaidas Hall,Parle. I had gone to that programme and I saw Geeta Dutt there. Many singers had come there-Rafi,mukesh,mahendra kapoor,Chandru Atma and Lata. When Lata was to come for singing there was a flurry of activity on the stage with everybody trying to please Lata. Lata came,sang and left like a Queen. When geeta came on the stage,hardly anyone did anything for her. This is how this world is ! geeta came,drew Harmonium near her and sang a Gazal of Shakeel Badayuni “Ujaale apni yaadon ke”. When she finished,there was a clapping louder that what Lata had received,from the Audience-people knew her value !!

Geeta was optimistic even in the year 1971. She used to say, ‘ If 2 hit songs in Aradhana can take Kishore Kumar to the Top, even 2 Hit songs for me will do the same.” But it was not to be. Even the regular composers like O P Nayyar already turned their backs on her. The Destiny decided to call her back !!!

One of my regrets was that if only Naushad had supported Geeta,she would have gained eminence for his songs for ever,like Saigal,Surendra,parul Ghosh,Zohrabai,Amirbai,Naseem Akhtar,Shamshad,Noorjehan,Suraiya,UmaDevi,talat,mukesh,Rafi and Lata….but Geeta’s name was not in this list. I am not a statistician,so I can not say how many songs she sang for Naushad,but i am sure it was almost nothing except a half song in Dillagi (1949) and a club song in Son of India (1962).

Geeta’s voice was typical Bengali.She sang all kinds of songs wonderfully but was truly a master at melancholies. Burman da who gave her emotional songs in Do Bhai,also gave her peppy club songs in Baazi,to make use of the sexy tinge in her voice.Further O P Nayyar fully exploited this special feature in Geeta’s voice. Her voice was sometimes sweet sometimes namkeen. It had a deapth. In this case Geeta was one step ahead of Lata. Geeta’s voice was different for every situation. When she sang,’ Baat chalat nayee chunari’, you felt she would have been a better singer classical singer that Laxmishankar. When she sang,’ Main to Giridhar ke ghar jaoon ‘, you felt Oneness with God,hearing her Bhaktiras dripping voice.

Juthika Roy was famous for meera Bhajans,but I always felt that her voice was same in any Bhajan,while Geeta’s Bhajans exuded different emotions in every bhajan.

While singing Club songs,Geeta was a different person. Just recall that ‘Hey hey hey hey befor Tadbeer se bigdi hui taqdeer bana le song or listen to O Babu O Lala or mera naam chin chin chu,then you will realise what I am saying !

One very important point in Geeta’s singing is not highlighted by many. In Hindi films there are many Male and female versions of songs called as Tandem songs and many singers have sung them. While singing such female version songs,Geeta never lost to the male singers ! All Geeta versions were more popular than the Male versions.

Both Asha and Lata have not a great record on this count.

You will remember Kishore’s ” Jeevan ke safar me raahi” but not Lata’s version.You will remember Talat’s ” Aye gham-e-dil kya karoon’ but not Asha’s version. Kishore was better than Asha in ” Zindagi ek safar hai Suhana” versions and also Kishore was better than Lata’s version of ” Khilte hai gul yahan’.

When it comes to Geeta,she never lost to male versions. C H Atma’s ” Preetam aan milo” is remembered by less people that Geeta’s ” Preetam aan milo” from mr. and Mrs.55 (same song.written by Saroj Mohini Nayyar,O.P.’s wife). Geeta’s “Kaise koi jiye (Baadbaan)” is much better than Hemant Kumar’s version. Similarly,” Hai ye duniya kaun si'(Sailaab) and ‘ Na ye chand hoga”(Shart).In both songs,Geeta is superior and more popular than Hemant kumar. (There is a story behind the song-Na ye chaand Hoga. Once a jilted young lover committed suicide under train at Patna. In his pocket these lines were written on a paper-Tumhare liye hain,tumhare rahenge,Na ye chand hoga,na tare rahenge,magar hum hamesha tumhare rahenge. Lyricist S.H.Bihari used these lines in his song).

On 22nd July 1972,just 2 days after Geeta’s death,there was a preplanned programme of Juthika Roy in Birla Matoshri Sabhagriha,Bombay. i had booked my tickets well in advance,so I went there. In the beginning everyone paid respects to Geeta Dutt,by standing for 2 Minutes. Talat,jagmohan and Surendra were also there. Then Juthika Roy came on stage,drew Harmonium near her and started singing ‘ Pag ghungaroo bandh…” .

I was lost in Geeta’s memory and saw Geeta with a Harmonium singing ” Main to Giridhar ke ghar jaoon’………………….

We are grateful to our friend Shri Arunkumar Deshmukh ji for writing this articles as a tribute to Geeta ji in spite his busy schedule.

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7 Responses to “Main toh Giridhar ke ghar jaaoon…”

  1. Dear Arunkumarji,

    What a brilliant article you have penned. I knew some of the incidents/facts mentioned in it but some of them are totally new ones. I have always liked Geetaji more than some of the leading female singers of the Hindi film industry but I had no reason to give. Now I know.

    Hats off to you,

    Warm regards,


  2. Nitin Shah says:

    After coming from Bengal she was staying in Parsi Colony, Dadar. I think Hanuman Prasadji heard her singing when he was passing by her house. After lot of persuasion her parents gave in to the request of Prasdji to allow her playback singing.

  3. Arunkumar Deshmukh says:

    Mahendra ji,
    Thank you very much for your kind words.

    Nitin ji,
    Thanks for your comments.

  4. Dadu Chicago says:

    Geeta is Geeta, no doubt, comparison to her voice or her songs with other singers are worthless. May some stars have looted the so called successful singers high position, but when you listen you can sing the whole song with Geetaji, while if you listen the other singers you have to pay more attention to purify the words Never compare the gold of 24 karat is only Geeta Roy the pure gold. The other singers are not gold but ornaments which are made with some mixture of Copper.

  5. n j muley says:

    I am not getting one mentioned in this blog the song “ujale apni yadon ke” gazel of Shakil Badayuni sung by Geeta ji. Will you guide the exact location of the song rendered by Geetaji, I am eager to hear the same.

  6. I appreciate your wordpress template, where do you get a hold of it through?

  7. Gajendra Khanna says:

    It was sung at a function. No known recording is available.

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