– by : Gopal Shroti.
It was the same Sunday, date 26th of April, 1987, the Great Shankar left this mortal world unsung…whose songs the world sang for 6 decades and still heard throughout India, it was only yesterday, in a marriage reception, the guitar went on “Kisi ki muskurahaton pe ho nissar, kissi ka dard mil sake to le udhar” and “Ruk jaa raat thehr jaa re chanda, beete na milan ki bela, aaj chandni ki nagari mein armanon ka mela”…..and I added, “Mela ye do dinon ka, Do dinon ki hai bahar, Samay ki behti dhar karti jaati hai pukar, Pukar…..Mehman kab ruke hain kaise roke jayenge….Savere wali gaadi se chale jayenge……..” And he went by the morning train on 26th April, 1987…..Nobody to accompany…But alone…The industry and close friends were sleeping, and till the sun came up. It was all over, his mausical body turned into the flames….Till this time the family members saw the worst face of film world, so they kept silent….Otherwise in a small town, hundreds of telephones ring even for anordinary person…But Shankar was no ordinary man….He knew better to go alone, but not with the traitor in filmdom where nobody is anybody…..
When he entered the industry, it was “BARSAAT” of melodious tunes…And I felt from the core of my heart, if God could be kind enough to shower the “BARSAAT”(rains) ON 26th April,1987….Anyhow the “BARSAAT” will continue till the melody and rhythm in the Hindi film songs rules…And I hope it will rule because no music director or film industry of today has the capability and devotion to create that era when melody ruled.
Manna Dey attributed his success to Shankar’s tunes, Rajendra Kumar was obligatory to Shankar for his “Silver Jubilee Kumar” image and Raj Kapoor loved both Shankar and Jaikishan, and on his death bed in Delhi after receiving the Dada Saheb Phalke Award, was asked by a jounalist whether he can recreate the dream Ssequence of “Awara.” He replied with tears in his eyes, “Mujhe mere Shankar Jaikishan and Shailendra la do, main phir se dream sequence bana doonga”….What better tribute can there to Shankar by his mentor, friend frien who had them in his mind at the time of his death?
Where will be the repetition of that era with films like , Barsaat, Awara, Kali Ghata, Mayur Pankh, Poonam, Rajhath, Aah, Daag,Yehudi, Anari, Ujala, Basant Bahar, Humrahi, Aas Ka Panchi, Sasural, Chhoti Bahen, Main Nashe Mein Hoon, Shri 420, Kanhaiya, Dil Apna Preet Parayi, Jis Desh Mein Ganga Behti Hai, Professor, Junglee, Prince, Rajkumar, Beti Bete, Dil Ek Mandir, Hariyalyi Aur Raasta, Love In Tokyo, An Evening In Paris, Raat Aur Din, Around The World, Mere Huzoor, Brahmachari, Mera Naam Joker, Sanyasi and count till it comes 112 films in two decades and 1000s of songs echoing & will continue to echo in the atmosphere and in hearts of people, through radios and thousands of cultural and social programmes, orchestras throughout India. There is lot to be written on Shankar, who played almost every instruments and within minutes the tunes were ready for us.
I remember 1954, 55 and later when the films were booked by the cinema owners by the names of Shankar Jaikishan, and not by heroes orheroines….Their nameswere the guarantee for the success of the films…Bakaul Hasrat Jaipuri:
“Jab yeh suna hai main ke Shankar chala gaya, mujhe yakeen nahin aaya ke dilbar chala gaya; Doobi hui hai sog mein ab meri zindagi, voh musiki ka ek samander chala Ggaya.
From SJ fans, my humble tribute to the Great Maste Shankarji: Jehan bhi raho aabad raho, sangeet se sabka dil behlate raho. Ek mehfil yehan thi, ek mehfil vahan bhi jame……..