24 October 2013

Binaca Geetmala - in 1952

Friends, for this new blog, we have decided to talk about songs from Binaca Geetmala for a few inaugural posts. Let us start from the very first program of Binaca Geetmala, which was broadcast for the first time on 3rd December, 1952.  There were 5 programs during the 5 Wednesdays and the final program was broadcast on 31st December, 1952

Radio in those days
Binaca Geetmala Program, was sponsored by Ciba Geigy Ltd., the makers of toothpaste and toothbrush in India in addition to other products.  The program was a novelty - never before was such a sponsored program broadcast. The generation of today may not be able to gauge the impact this had on the minds of people then, but suffice to say that there are generations and generations of people in India who hold it dearly to their heart.

Amin Sayani
A Young Amin Sayani
A young 21 year old man was entrusted the job of presenting this novel idea to the Radio Listeners in India on an experimental basis. He had to write the program, produce it and broadcast it in his own voice. 

Exactly at 8 pm on 3rd December, 1952 - Radio Ceylon [as it was called then] reverberated with the baritone of Amin Sayani's voice - "Bhaiyo aur Behno”. [HMV company which released a cassette later contains these very words said by Amin Sayani himself - where he further states that it was a program which entered the hearts of people right from its maiden broadcast.]

It cant exactly be coined as Annual Program, though on the basis of letters received from listeners, 9 most popular songs were short-listed and broadcast.

The songs broadcast were:

Amin Sayani with CD on Binaca Geetmala
No. 9 - Main pagal mora manwa pagal – Film - Ashiana, Talat Mehmood - Madan Mohan - Rajinder Krishan

No. 8- Tasveer banata hoon teri- Film-Deewana- Mohd. Rafi-Naushad- Shakeel Badayuni

No. 7- Dekho Jaadu bhare more nain- Film-Asmaan-Geeta Dutt-O P Nayyar-Prem Dhavan

No. 6- Mohabbat hi na samjhe wo zalim-Film- Parchhai-Talat Mehmood- C Ramchandra-Noor Lakhnavi.

No. 5- Main dil hoon ek arman bhara- Film- Anhonee- Talat Mehmood-Roshan-Satyendra Atthaiya.

No. 4- Ye hawa ye raat ye chandani- FilmSangdil- Talat Mehmood-Sajjad Hussain-Rajinder Krishan

And then the top 3 popular songs [as we know them today] were presented

No. 3- Dil mein chupakepyar ka- Film- Aan- Mohd. Rafi-Naushad-Shakeel Badayuni

No. 2- Aye mere dil kahi aur chal- Film-Daag-Talat Mehmood-shankar-Jaikishen-shailendra

Then came the most popular song of 1952 according to the listeners letters

No. 1- Tu ganga ki mauj main- Film Baiju Bawra- Mohd. Rafi/Lata Mangeshkar- Naushad-Shakeel Badayuni.

During the 4 preceding weeks 2 songs from Aan, 2 songs from Baiju Bawra,1 each from Daag, Naubahar, Shin shina ke bublaboo and Poonam also made their way into the programs in addition to the above mentioned.

We will now discuss the songs which made the cut in the first ever annual program in the later posts.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Yogendra- perhaps when we meet, we can reminisce over it

  2. Ameen sayani sab added swing to binaca geetmala. Binaca geetmala without Aminji and Aminji without Binaca is unthinkable. Long live Ameen Sayanisab.

  3. Wow, it's exactly 3 months after I was born (3/8/52),the Binaca GM started. I was listener till it said good bye. Sic.!

  4. It made me nostalgic when we used to wait on roads to hear Binaca Geet Mala, when we were single and used to take meals at Hotel and did not have Radio at Home.

    1. You are so right S L Bedekar. Money was very scarce then as it is now too. But we found ways and means to satisfy our urge. I too have stood somewhere and listened to that sonorous voice of Ameen Sayani- uttering -Bhaiyo aur Behno-It used to give me goosebumps

  5. Hello Dilip Sahab, my day is made reading your post. Binaca Geetmala on Radio Ceylon and later Chitrahaar on Doordarshan were both on a Wednesday just as any Indian movie is released on a Friday. Amin Sayani had set a style which most RJs followed in the later years. My childhood with my siblings was greatly influenced by Hindi film songs and Budhwaar 8 bage for BGM was the must sought after time slot. Since it was aired on short wave band, it had an urban fan following. Please write something about "Sartaaj Geet" Happy days remembered. Thank you again. UBSingh (Howrah)

  6. It takes me back to 69/70's. Amin's dynamic & enchanting voice created interest in Hindi language & filmsongs.
    As Lataji,Rafi & Kishore sahib, amin has unique place in our minds.
    At 8pm,on wednesdays (even if there are exams) ,we listened to BinavaGeetMala in hostel common room radio. Listening with friends we had evenbets for the best song of the year. Bestwishes to binacageetmala fans.

  7. The Sixties saw the brilliance of Amin Sayani with Binaca Geet Mala. Still remember the song with which he signs off in '70 - '71 accha to hum challte hai . ..
    from Aan milo sajna.

  8. Thank You Dilip Apte Sir for providing valuable information about our beloved Binaca Geetmala. I have remembrance of Binaca Geetmala, S Kumar ke filmi Muqadame and some radio publicity of films by Ameen Sayani.