“…Jeena isi ka naam hai”

Love for music in this family exists right from his grandfather’s times, father was a great lover of Hindi film music, particularly of “Shankar-Jaikishan”. It was no wonder therefore that Swapneel Sathe inherited this love.

But that just the love for music, and particularly for a certain popular song, would give new life to someone does look surprising to say the least..but it did happen. The Pune couple Chitra Sathe-Swapneel Sathe is the one that has brought this fantasy into reality. Both inherited their love for music from their fathers.

They did, of course, like compositions by all composers, but as they listened to more and more songs by Shankar-Jaikishan, they became enamoured with them and finally virtually turned into their devotees. Not just their melody, but the words too attracted them. On listening to their song from ‘Anari’
“Kisi ki muskarahaton pe ho nisaar
Kisika dard mil sake to le udhaar
Kisike vaste ho tere dil me pyar
Jeena isika naam hai…”

these meaningful words by Shailendra “Kisika dard mil sake to le udhaar” (Borrow someone’s pain if you can) took Swapneel by storm. He began thinking how he could put this philosophy into practice. This was the time when he was about to be betrothed. The idea of adapting an orphan seemed the perfect answer. He conveyed this to his (to-be) wife Chitra the first time they met before the wedding.

Now look at the remarkable coincidence here. When Chitra and her people came to meet the Sathe family, the song Chitra sang was “Tera mera pyar amar…” — again a Shankar Jaikishan song. And it’s not as if she was aware of Swapneel’s liking for SJ songs. So they possibly connected there and then.

What is surprising is Chitra, too, happily seconded the suggestion. Chitra had been witness to her friend adopting a child and had seen an Orphanage and the procedure from up close. She had therefore experienced the serenity and the nobility of the deed.
Chitra and Swapneel got married. Even after they had a son, the thought of adopting someone wouldn’t leave them. They both genuinely believed that adopting an orphan would create a home and hope of a good life for that innocent child, the child would get parents and, though indirectly, they would be paying homage to their musical idols Shankar- Jaikishan. They already have a son, then why not adopt a girl? They both concurred on this.

But when they put forth this thought before elders, they all opposed. None was happy about accepting an unknown child into the home as a permanent member. As it is, people want to restrict the size of their family in these days of inflation, so why do you want to add a member when you already have a son, is what most of them asked. But other songs of Shankar-Jaikishan, such as “Tumhare hain tumse daya mangte hain” and “Zyada ki nahin laalach hum ko, thode me guzara hota hai” also moulded the philosophy of Swapneel and Chitra. They stood firm and went ahead and applied to the ‘Shri Vatsa” Orphanage. The institution studied their information, made sure this was a worthy couple and showed them a girl there. As they looked at her, they knew this was the one they wanted to adopt.

Soon they completed the procedure and “Bhairavi” officially became part of the family – parents Chitra and Swapneel and brother Shreyas. Yes, ‘Bhairavi’ was the name they had already agreed upon, the reason was again Shankar-Jaikishan songs. Bhairavi was SJ’s favourite ‘raaga’, as also Swapneel’s. So many of Shankar Jaikishan songs in Bhairavi were a ‘weak point’ of both Swapneel and Chitra. Jaikishan’s daughter is also called Bhairavi. So the Sathe couple paid a dual homage to Shankar-Jaikishan.

When Bhairavi actually came home, the opposition had all disappeared and she was heartily welcomed not only by the people at home, but even by residents of the housing society. Now Bhairavi, along with brother Shreyas, is loved by all.

Swapneel conveyed this entire story by e-mail to Pallavi (Jaikishan’s wife). She was so impressed by it that she not only replied promptly and conveyed her appreciation and blessings, but she also asked him for his address. Within two days Swapneel received at his address, as a special gift from Pallavi Jaikishan, the handsome filmography volume ‘Saat suron ka saath – Shankar Jaikishan’ edited by Mr Vishwas Nerurkar. For the Sathe couple, this is a priceless gift.

This extraordinary deed by Chitra and Swapneel Sathe prompted by the words,

“Kisika dard mil sake to le udhaar
Kisike vaste ho tere dil me pyar
Jeena isika naam hai“

are a true manifestation of the sentiment behind them and has not only provided parents to a girl child, but also given her an opportunity to live her life and to realize her potential.

The true power behind melody and words is again underlined by the deed of this noble and exemplary couple…🙂

Chitra and Swapneel ji

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“Thanks a Ton to our senior friend CHANDU KALE for this appropriate translation of posting of my Marathi note, just valuing the importance of the subject to reach to Non-Marathi readers as well, to know what the genuine music-lovers can do in life… 

Prasad Sanwatsarkar

Shri Prasad Sanwatsarkar – writer of the original feature in Marathi

After seemingly endless aimless driving on scooters on superb village roads in rustic Goa, arrived at this famous Fishermans Wharf restaurant at Cavellosim.

Shri Chandu Kale ji who translated into English