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KAKA JI (Rajesh Khanna)

Posted by Rajesh Dixit on July 18, 2012 at 9:55 PM Comments comments (0)

 Rajesh Khanna, whose success as a romantic lead in scores of Indian movies made him Bollywood's first superstar, died Wednesday (18-07-2012) after a brief illness. He was 69.

His wife, actress Dimple Kapadia, and two daughters were at his bedside when he died at his home in Mumbai, said his son-in-law, actor Akshay Kumar.

Khanna began his career in the mid-1960s in romantic films that were hugely popular. He played the lead role in some 120 of the 170 movies in which he appeared and won scores of awards.

His enormous success was a new phenomenon in India. Screaming fans surrounded him whenever he appeared in public. Women married his photograph and wrote him letters in their blood proposing marriage.

He was born Jatin Khanna on Dec. 29, 1942, in the northern Indian town of Amritsar. He took to acting while in school and adopted the name Rajesh Khanna when he began his career in films.

After his early success he became a favorite with film directors wanting a sure box-office winner. During the 1970s, he had 15 consecutive movies that set new sales records. He was feted as the king of romance and mobbed by hysterical fans, who kissed his car when they couldn't get near him.

"Khanna witnessed unbelievable popularity, such that no one had ever seen or imagined. In fact from 1969 to 1973, it was a one-horse race," said Javed Akhtar, a screenwriter and poet.

Khanna debuted in 1965 with "Akhri Khath," or "The Last Letter." A few films followed where the young handsome actor was noticed and gained fame. Then in 1969, came the romantic drama "Aradhana," or "Worship." The film was a runaway success and Khanna's career saw a meteoric rise.

In 1973, Khanna surprised his millions of fans by marrying Kapadia, a young and upcoming actress. The couple had two daughters, but they soon separated. Kapadia complained of his mood swings and bad temper when she moved out with her daughters. However, she returned to take care of Khanna after he fell sick two months ago.

After a nearly three-decade reign in Bollywood, Khanna saw his popularity dim when action films became the rage and younger stars rose to the top. His fall was swift as Khanna turned to alcohol and for the last few years of his life, he became almost a recluse.

As his film career faded, he shifted to politics and was elected to Parliament in 1992 and served there until 1996.


Posted by Rajesh Dixit on July 12, 2012 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Standing tall with rippling muscles, wrestler-actor Dara Singh was a name to reckon with in the world of wrestling who ventured into an unusual territory -- films.

The 84-year-old will always be remembered for his variety of roles in cinema and on the small screen, the most memorable being that of Hanuman in the iconic show Ramayan. Apart from making a name for himself in professional wrestling, Singh also acted in a number of Punjabi and Hindi films.

Born in a Jat Sikh family to Balwant Kaur and Surat Singh Randhawa in November 1928 in the village Dharmuchak of Amritsar district in Punjab, Singh was trained in an Indian style of wrestling, Pehlwani.

Apart from wrestling in tournaments, he wrestled on invitation of kings of Indian princely states in fairs and carnivals.

In the world of wrestling, he competed against some of the greatest names like King Kong (Australia), George Gordienko (Canada), John Desilva (New Zealand) and others.

Singh won the title of Rustam-e-Punjab and Rustam-e-Hind for his wrestling prowess. Also, he became the Commonwealth Champion in 1959 and in 1996 he was inducted into the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame.

Singh included over 500 professional fights to his credit, all undefeated.

After his retirement from wrestling in 1983, the Commonwealth wrestling champion then turned towards showbiz in 1952 with Sangdil.

He went on to star in many films later on, including King Kong (1962), Faulad (1963), Darasingh: Ironman (1964), Daku Mangal Singh (1966) and Warrant (1975).

Even though most of his films were relegated to a B-grade category, Singh made special appearances in mainstream films like Mera Naam Joker (1970), Ajooba (1991), Dillagi (1999) and Kal Ho Naa Ho (2003). He was last seen playing Kareena Kapoor's grandfather in Jab We Met (2007).

But it was the iconic TV series Ramayan (1986) which made Dara Singh a household name. He worked in some television shows, including Had Kar Di which was aired on Zee TV and Kya Hoga Nimmo Ka on Star Plus.

Filmmaker Manmohan Desai paid Singh an unusual compliment when he signed him for Mard.

"Amitabh Bachchan is playing the title role of Mard. I was wondering who could be his father... If Amitabh plays Mard, then his father can be Dara Singh only. This is why I took Dara Singh in the film," Desai had said.

One of his notable friends was actress Mumtaz, with whom he starred in 16 Hindi films including Faulad (1963), Veer Bhimsen (1964), Hercules (1964), Aandhi Aur Toofan (1964), Tarzan Comes to Delhi, Tarzan and King Kong (1965), Sikandar-e-Azam (1965), Rustom-E-Hind (1965).

Besides acting, he produced and directed Punjabi films.

He was a member of Rajya Sabha from Bhartiya Janata Party from August 2003 to August 2009.

From his first marriage, he has a son Parduman Singh Randhawa and from his second marriage he has five children – two sons and three daughters including TV and film actor Vidhu Dara Singh

A childhood hero to many for his wrestling prowess, 84-year-old Singh, who played Hanuman in epic teleserial Ramayanan and also dabbled in politics, passed away at 7.30 am at his residence in Juhu in suburban Mumbai.

Legend of Holi and Celebration

Posted by Rajesh Dixit on March 13, 2012 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)

The Legend There was once a demon king by the name of Hiranyakashyap who won over the kingdom of earth. He was so egoistic that he commanded everybody in his kingdom to worship only him. But to his great disappointment, his son, Prahlad became an ardent devotee of Lord Naarayana and refused to worship his father. Hiranyakashyap tried several ways to kill his son Prahlad but Lord Vishnu saved him every time. Finally, he asked his sister, Holika to enter a blazing fire with Prahlad in her lap. For, Hiranyakashyap knew that Holika had a boon, whereby, she could enter the fire unscathed. Treacherously, Holika coaxed young Prahlad to sit in her lap and she herself took her seat in a blazing fire. The legend has it that Holika had to pay the price of her sinister desire by her life. Holika was not aware that the boon worked only when she entered the fire alone. Prahlad, who kept chanting the name of Lord Naarayana all this while, came out unharmed, as the lord blessed him for his extreme devotion. Thus, Holi derives its name from Holika. And, is celebrated as a festival of victory of good over evil. Holi is also celebrated as the triumph of a devotee. As the legend depicts that anybody, howsoever strong, cannot harm a true devotee. And, those who dare torture a true devotee of god shall be reduced to ashes. Celebration of the Legend Even today, people enact the scene of 'Holika's burning to ashes' every year to mark the victory of good over evil. In several states of India, specially in the north, effigies of Holika are burnt in the huge bonfires that are lit. There is even a practice of hurling cow dungs into the fire and shouting obscenities at it as if at Holika. Then everywhere one hears shouts of 'Holi-hai! Holi-hai!'. The tradition of burning 'Holika' is religiously followed in Gujarat and Orissa also. Here, people render their gratitude to Agni, the god of fire by offering gram and stalks from the harvest with all humility. Further, on the last day of Holi, people take a little fire from the bonfire to their homes. It is believed that by following this custom their homes will be rendered pure and their bodies will be free from disease. At several places there is also a tradition of cleaning homes, removing all dirty articles from around the house and burning them. Disease-breeding bacteria are thereby destroyed and the sanitary condition of the locality is improved. Holi celebration takes place with lot of joy and verve throughout the country. The enthusiasm of the people reaches its peak and matches with the nature which is in full bounty at the time of Holi. Holi is being celebrated in Indian since time immemorial but the popularity of Holi celebrations seems to be rising with every passing year and so is the level of hoo-ha. As no other festival gives so much liberty to the people to let their hair loose and enjoy their hidden crazy self. Differences of any sort are drowned in the coloured waters of Holi and people just enjoy being a play animal. To further enhance the festive spirit of Holi celebrations we have a social sanction to get a kick with the tradition of bhang. Then there is total wildness as people dance to the rhythm of dholak and sing traditional folk songs in loudest possible pitch. Children particularly enjoy the festival as they throw water filled balloons at passersby...and if anybody stares..they have ready answer, 'Bura na mano Holi hai..' and evoke a smile on the irritated face. Besides, they have their water missiles, called pichkaris to drench the person from far and escape further drenching. In the midst of these colouring games are savoured the mouth watering holi specialities like gujiya, malpuas, mathri, puran poli, dahi badas etc and downed with glasses full of thandai. In some states there is also a tradition of breaking the pot full of buttermilk which is hung high on the streets. A group of boys form a human pyramid and one of them break the pot. All this while womenfolk throw buckets of colour water on them and sing folk songs. And after a wild and eventful day, evenings are celebrated in a dignified manner by visiting friends and relatives. People exchange sweets and hug each other conveying the warm wishes for Holi. These days there people also participate and organise Holi Meets and enjoy the festival till late in the night. Holi celebrations that starts with the burning of Holika on the eve of Holi thus culminates with the lot of funfilled activity and bonhomie. However, at some places specially Mathura and Barsana Holi celebrations continue for a week as each major temple organise a Holi bash on different day. Lovers of the festival enjoy every moment to the hilt.

Dev Anand

Posted by Rajesh Dixit on December 4, 2011 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Dev Anand was the ultimateflamboyant and irresistibly charming silver screen star, whose romantic imageand infectious zeal for life and cinema will outlive that of hiscontemporaries.

The charismatic star lived bythe philosophy of Main Zindagi Ka Saath Nibhata Chala Gaya,  Har Fikarko dhunye mein Udata Chala Gaya," a song from his movie Hum Dono (1961)

The 88-year-old versatileactor-filmmaker, who passed away in Londonlast night, will be remembered for his swagger, which continue to findimitations till date.

When hiscontemporaries like Raj Kapoor and Dilip Kumar stopped playing the leading menin movies, Dev Anand did not lose his innate romantic spirit and continued towoo his young heroines with trademark puff of hair, his sloping walk and smilein movies like Johnny Mera Naam, Des Pardes, Hare Rama Hare Krishna amongothers.

Theactor-director-producer was working till his last. His latest projectChargesheet is ready to release and he was planning a extention of his cult hitHare Rama Hare Krishna.

But there will be no Dev saab, as he was popularly addressed as by friendsand fans, to complete them.

In his lastinterview to PTI in September on his 88th birthday, Dev Anand said that he hadstill a lot to offer.

"My life isthe same and I am at a beautiful stage at 88. I am as excited as I was in my20s. I have so many things to do and I am looking forward to the release ofChargesheet.

"I am workingon a fresh script titled Hare Rama Hare Krishna Aaj on audience's demand."

His films spoke of his modernsensibilities and desire to portray tomorrow's headlines today. The Bollywoodlegend always said that his films were expression of his world view and hencedealt with socially-relevant subjects.

His recent moviesfocused on the themes of present times like Awwal Number, Sau Crore, Censor, MrPrime Minister and the latest Chargesheet where he played central characters.

Even though afterAwwal Number, his movies did not do well at the box office, the evergreenhero's mantra was always to think positive. "I never give myself a chanceto get depressed. I think ahead," he would say.

There has alwaysbeen a hint of romance and intrigue in Dev Anand's personal and professionallife which perhaps made him so popular.

In 2007, hereleased his memoirs Romancing with Life where he admitted he has never lookedback in his life, always preferring to remain optimistic and confident aboutfuture.

Dev Anand co-produced theEnglish Version of Guide with the Nobel Laureate Pearl S Buck (The Good Earth).

In 1993, hereceived a Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award and in 1996 he received a ScreenVideocon Lifetime Achievement Award.

Of late he wasinvolved in the direction of a new all American film Project Song Of Life - amusical love story which was to be shot in the United States. He was to playthe central character in the film which was to have a predominantly Americanstar cast.

Dev Anand is thesecond of three brothers who were active in Hindi Cinema. His brothers areChetan Anand and Vijay Anand. Their sister, Sheel Kanta Kapur, is the mother ofrenowned film director Shekhar Kapur.

His films spoke of his modernsensibilities and desire to portray tomorrow's headlines today. The Bollywoodlegend always said that his films were expression of his world view and hencedealt with socially-relevant subjects.

His recent moviesfocused on the themes of present times like Awwal Number, Sau Crore, Censor, MrPrime Minister and the latest Chargesheet where he played the centralcharacter.

Even though afterAwwal Number, his movies did not do well at the box office, the evergreenhero's mantra was always to think positive. "I never give myself a chanceto get depressed. I think ahead," he would say.

On the sets of the film Jeet,Dev Anand finally proposed to Suraiya but her maternal grandmother opposed therelationship as they were Muslim and Dev Anand Hindu, and so, Suraiya remainedunmarried all her life.

He was offered hisfirst big break by Ashok Kumar. He spotted Dev hanging around in the studiosand picked him as the hero for the Bombay Talkies production, Ziddi in 1948,which became an instant success.

Always the one tothink ahead, Dev Anand decided to start producing films after Zinddi's success.In 1949, Dev Anand turned producer and launched his own company Navketan whichtill 2011 has produced 31 films.

His trademark styleof dialogue delivery, an array of hats and a penchant for nodding whilespeaking became Dev Anand's style in films like Munimji, CID and Paying Guest.

His style was lapped by theaudience and widely imitated. Taxi Driver (1954) and CID (1956) saw himportraying living in the urban underbelly.

He broke newgrounds, playing a smuggler in Jaal, absconding gang member in Dushman,blackmarketeer in Kalabazaar and a murderer in Bombay Ka Babu.

Still, criticsaccused him of being more style than substance. But, Dev Anand proved hisdetractors wrong - first with a class act in Kala Paani (1958).

Then came Hum Dono(1961) and he finally sealed all doubts with a nuanced performance in Guide(1966).

In 1970s, hissuccess story continued with Johnny Mera Naam. Jewel Thief, directed by youngerbrother Vijay Anand, was another feather in his cap.

Honoured with the DadasahebPhalke Award in 2002, Dev Anand had also been politically active. He led a groupof film personalities, who stood up against the 1975 Emergency imposed by thenPrime Minister Indira Gandhi.

He activelycampaigned against her with his supporters in 1977 Parliamentary elections. Healso floated a political outfit, National Party of India, which he laterdisbanded


Posted by Rajesh Dixit on October 20, 2011 at 11:25 AM Comments comments (0)


(also: Depawali, Dipavali, Dewali, Diwali,Divali, Dipotsavi, Dipapratipad )marks the beginning of the Hindu New Year according to the Lunar Calendar. Itliterally translated means 'Row of Lights' (from Sanskrit: dipa = lamp / awali= row, line). It celebrates the victory of Goodness over Evil and Light overDarkness - it ushers in the new year. Especially for this event people arecleaning their houses and wear new clothes. Diwali is a 5 day festival asDhanteras, Choti Diwali, Badi (Main) Diwali,Padwa and Bhaiduj. There are many different names for the days of Diwali indifferent regions of India(South & North India, East & West India) and in the different languagesspoken in that regions (i.e. Hindi, Urdu, Telugu, Tamil, Gujarati, Bengali).During Deepavali people pray to Lakshmi, Goddess of wealth, light, prosperityand wisdom, but also to Ganesha, the 'Remover of Obstacles' and the 'Lord ofBeginnings'. 

Deepavali celebrations take place in many countries in the world. On the firstday of the Diwali festival people pray and having a special breakfast made ofmany different foods. The Hindu Goddess Lakshmi's statue and images are carriedthrough the streets in processions. There are various legends and storiesassociated with the Diwali festival. The story of Bali, Emergence of Laxmi,Krishna Narakasur Fight, Victory of Rama over Ravana and many more. Dipa Lights(also called Diwali Diyas, Kandils, Ghee Lamps or Parvati Ganesha Lamps) - madeof clay, fueled with Oil from Coconuts, Mustard or Ghee (clarified butter), thewick made of cotton wool - are placed outside of houses, on floors anddoorways. During Diwali festival, doorways are hung with torans of mango leavesand marigolds. Deepavali Melas are being enjoyed by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains &Buddhists alike. On the day of Deepavali people exchange gifts, burstingfirecrackers, lighting fireworks, colourful sparklers & bonfires and havingfestive meals. Diwali Melas (fairs) are held throughout India and thecelebrations abroad. The Indian Festival of Lights takes place after themonsoon season has finished and the weather is nice and pleasant again.

Wishing Happy Diwali to everyone! Deepavali Valthukkal!! Shubh Diwali!!




Posted by Rajesh Dixit on October 20, 2011 at 11:10 AM Comments comments (1)

Dhanteras, Monday, Kartik Kishna Paksha, 24thOctober 2011

In the North India,Dhanteras is celebrated with full faith and enthusiasm on Trayodashi of KartikKrishna Paksha. Apart from Dev Dhanvantri, Goddess Lakshmi and God Kuber areworshipped on this day. Yam Dev is also offered Deep Dan on this day. it isbelieved, worshipping Yam Dev on this day cancel any premature death. Afterworshipping Yam Dev, a lamp should be lit on the entrance door facing the southdirection for the whole night. Few coins and kodi are put in this lamp.

Importance of DhanterasPurchasing new gifts, coins, utensil andjewellery is considered auspicious. During Subh Muhurat, Puja is performed andseven cereals are worshipped. seven cereals include wheat, Urad, Moong,gram,barely and Masoor. Golden flowers are used while worshipping Bhagwati.This day, white sweets are used in form of Navedy. Worshipping of goddessLakshmi is considered favorable on this day.

Dev Dhanwantri was born on Dhan Trayodashi.Lord Dhawantri is the doctor of all God. Hence, many new inventions in thefield of medical science are started on this day. It is auspicious to buysilver on the day of Dhantares.

Dhanteras Puja Muhurat 

1. Pradosh KalPradosh Kal is the time of 2 hours 24 minutesafter sunset. Deep Dan and Lakshmi Pujan is considered auspicious during thistime.

On 24th October 2011, sunset time will be from17:44 to 20:08 in Delhi.During this period, Taurus Lagna will be the fixed Lagna from 19:05 to 20:08.The muhurat time will bring wealth in Home and family.

2. Chaughadia Muhurat24th October 2011, Monday 

Amrit Muhurat from 06:10 to 07:37am 

Shub Muhurat from 09:04 to 10:32 am 

Char Muhurat from 17:49 to 19:22 

Labh Muhurat from 22:27 to 24:00 

Worshiping in the above mentioned Labh Muhurat increases the benefits. By theauspiciousness of Subh Muhurat, individual gets favorable health, wealth andlongevity. Worshipping is Amrit Muhurat is considered to be most favorable.

Auspicious Muhurat in Evening 

The time of Pradosh Kal,fixed Lagna from 19:05to 20:08 will be the most auspicious for the Pujan of Dhanteras. 

What to purchase on Dhanteras 

Bringing home the silver idols of Lakshmi andGanesha, increases wealth, success and growth at house, offices and businessorganisation.

Lord Dhanwantri appeared in sea with an urn,hence, there is a tradition of buying utensils of this day. It is believedbuying utensils or silver increases their count by 13 times. Also, buying seedsof dried coriander and keeping them in house increases wealth. On the day ofDiwali, these seeds are sown in garden or farms. These seeds are the symbol ofgrowth and wealth increment in a person’s life.

Dhanteras PujanThe worshipping of Dhanteras should be done inSubh Muhurat. First of all 13 lamps should be lighted and Kuber in the Lockershould be worshipped. Lord Kuber is worshipped and offered flowers and it issaid the I worship you Kuber lord who sits on the best plane similar toGarudamani, holding Gadha in both the hands and wearing crown on head, dearfriend of lord Shiva.

After this worship with incense sticks, lamps,Navedy and chant the following mantra

'यक्षाय कुबेराय वैश्रवणाय धन-धान्य अधिपतये 

धन-धान्य समृद्धि मे देहि दापय स्वाहा ।'  

Dhanteras StoryOnce upon a time, a king ruled a state. Aftermany years, a child was born in his house. An astrologer said about king’schild that the boy will die after 4 days from his marriage.

King felt very depressed on hearing the wordsof astrologer. To save his son from any such incident, king had sent the boy toa place where no lady used to live nearby. Once, a princess passed from thatpath. Prince and princess saw each other and fascinated. They decided to getmarried.

According to the predictions made byastrologer, exactly after 4 days Yamdoot can to take the life of the prince.Seeing Yamdoot, wife of prince started mourning. Yamdoot requested Yamraj totell a way to save the life of prince. Yamraj said, if ,a person who worshiphim on the Trayodashi night of Kartik Krishna Paksha with lamps facing thesouth direction then he never has the fear of sudden death. Since that day,lamps are lighted outside the house in south direction on Dhanteras.



The legend of Karva Chouth

Posted by Rajesh Dixit on October 15, 2011 at 3:30 AM Comments comments (0)

KarvaChauth is a popular festival observed by married Hindu and Sikh women for thelongevity of their husbands or fiancés. The etymology of Karva Chauth is Karvameaning a small earthen oil-lamp and chauth implies ‘fourth’. Because of itsimmense cultural and social significance, and emotional attachment between thespouses, Karva Cauth festival has become well known extensively. Traditionally,on the occasion of Karva Chauth married women renounce themselves from eatingor drinking water from sunrise till the moment of the moonrise for thewell-being of their husbands by following rituals. They break their day longfast only after the moon becomes visible in the evening and when husbands offerwater or food. 

 Karva Chauth 2011 will be celebrated onOctober 15 with great enthusiasm. Karva Chauth is a one-day festival celebratedwith great excitement in the states of Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh,Uttarakhand and Gujarat. In the Punjabicommunity, the woman starts her fast by having sargi prepared by themother-in-law. The Karva Chauth date depends entirely based on Hindu lunisolarcalendar month of Kartik.

Women for Karva Chauth prepare themselves in advance by buying ornaments, newtraditional clothes and festival related items. The colors of the dresses aremainly chosen in orange, gold and red as they are believed to be auspicious.Decorating hands and feet with henna in intricate designs is also an oldtradition believed to fortify the bond of love. 

As the evening approaches, women gather together in circle singing traditionalsongs and a version of Karva Chauth story is narrated with regular pauses by anolder woman. The Karva Chauth Katha is usually associated with variouscelebrated tales of female characters who sacrificed herself to save herhusband’s life. 

In the contemporary times, Karva Chauth is interpreted as a romantic festivalthat symbolizes the love and affection between wife and husband. The essence ofthis festival has also been portrayed with excellence in the Indian      movies. 

Karva Chauth is celebrated in various innovative ways and sending lovely KarvaChauth SMS is one such trend. The SMSs are customized with beautiful words tocarry the significance of the festival or say ‘Happy Karva Chauth’. 

Celebration of Karva Chauth is severely criticized as fostering sexism becausethe males do not follow the tradition of fasting. However, irrespective ofmassive criticism the festivity has not lost its spirit and color, and isobserved ardently by the women and men in India.  




Jagjit Singh

Posted by Rajesh Dixit on October 10, 2011 at 9:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Jagjit Singh was born in Sri Ganganagar, Rajasthan[3] to Amar Singh Dhiman, a government employee, a native of Dalla village in Punjab and his mother, Bachan Kaur from Ottallan village, Samrala. He had four sisters and two brothers and he was known as Jeet by his family. He was raised as a Sikh by religion. He went to Khalsa High School in Sri Ganganagar and then studied science after matriculation at Government College, Sri Ganganagar and went onto graduate in Arts at DAV College, Jalandhar. He is a post-graduate in history from Kurukshetra University in Haryana.

His association with music goes back to his childhood. He learnt music under Pandit Chaganlal Sharma for two years in Ganganagar, and later devoted six years to learning Khayal, Thumri and Dhrupad forms of Indian Classical Music from Ustad Jamaal Khan of the Sainia Gharana school. Popularly known as "Ghazal King", Singh gained acclaim together with his wife, singer Chitra Singh. Chitra stopped giving public performances after their only son, Vivek, died in a road accident in 1990.[3] But Singh continued to sing, singing with equal ease in Punjabi, Hindi, Urdu, Gujrati, Sindhi and Nepali languages. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 2003.

The Vice-Chancellor of Panjab University and Kurukshetra University, Late Professor Suraj Bhan encouraged his interest in music. He arrived in Mumbai in 1965 in search of better opportunities for being a musician and singer. His early struggle in the music industry, though not too harsh by his own account, still had its share of trials and tribulations. He lived as a paying guest and his earlier assignments were singing advertisement jingles. Singh was first offered to sing in a Gujarati film, Dharati Na Chhoru produced by Suresh Amin.

During 1970s, the art of ghazal singing was dominated by well-established names like Noor Jehan, Malika Pukhraj, Begum Akhtar, Talat Mahmood and Mehdi Hassan. However, Singh was able to make his mark and carve out a niche for himself. In 1976, his album The Unforgetables (On HMV LP Records) hit music stores. Essentially a ghazal album, its emphasis on melody and Jagjit's fresh voice was a departure from the prevalent style of ghazal rendition, which was heavily based on classical and semi-classical Indian music. Skeptics had their own reservations; purists scorned it, but it was widely successful among listeners and the album set new sales records.

In 1967, Jagjit met Chitra, also a singer. After a two year courtship they got married in December 1969.[3] They epitomize the first successful husband-wife singing team. Jagjit and Chitra Singh have made immense contributions to ghazal music and the Indian music industry in general.

Successful releases of the duo include Ecstasies, A Sound Affair and Passions. While these albums were breezy, Beyond Time released in the opening years of 1990s was an experimentation with sounds.

Around this time the duo was struck by grief, when their only son, Vivek (21), died in a road accident on 28 July 1990. Their subsequent album Someone Somewhere was the last album with ghazals sung by both. After that Chitra Singh quit singing.[3]

Jagjit Singh's later albums, including Hope, In Search, Insight, Mirage, Visions, Kahkashan (meaning "Galaxy"), Love Is Blind, Chirag (meaning "Lamp"/"Flame") also achieved success. Sajda (an Urdu word meaning "prostration") had ghazals sung by Jagjit and Lata Mangeshkar. The combined successes of his many albums made him the number one ghazal singer in India. The audience wanted more and Jagjit Singh obliged with his Punjabi albums. His ghazals use poetry by renowned poets including Mirza Ghalib, Firaq Gorakhpuri, Qateel Shifai, Shahid Kabir, Ameer Meenai, Kafeel Aazer, Sudarshan Faakir and Nida Fazli, and contemporary writers like Zaka Siddiqi, Nazir Bakri, Faiz Ratlami and Rajesh Reddy.

Singh also sang (as playback singer) for various songs in Bollywood films including Arth, Saath Saath, and Premgeet (all from 1980s). These scores remain popular even today. In fact, all the songs of film Premgeet were composed by Jagjit. His compositions for the TV serial Mirza Ghalib (based on the life of the poet Mirza Ghalib), remain extremely popular among ghazal aficionados.

Compared to his earlier ghazals (sung during 70s and 80s) his later ghazals have acquired a more soulful and poignant demeanour, as in albums such as Marasim, Face To Face, Aaeena, Cry For Cry. His ghazals have been used in more recent Bollywood films like Dushman, Sarfarosh, Tum Bin and Tarkeeb.

Most of the earlier albums of Jagjit Singh had English titles. Later, these had Urdu names like Sahar (meaning "Dawn"/"Morning"), Muntazir (meaning "In waiting"), Marasim (meaning "Relation"/"Relationship"/"Affinity" ), and Soz (meaning "Pathos").

Besides ghazals, Jagjit Singh has also sung bhajans and Gurbani (Hindu and Sikh devotional hymns respectively). Albums such as Maa, Hare Krishna, Hey Ram...Hey Ram, Ichhabal and also Man Jeetai Jagjeet in Punjabi, put him in the league of Bhajan singers such as Mukesh, Hari Om Sharan, Yesudas, Anup Jalota and Purushottam Das Jalota. The soothing effect that Jagjit's voice has on frayed nerves, prompted psychiatrists in metros (as large cities in India are called) to prescribe them as stress relievers.[citation needed]

On 10 May 2007, in a joint session held in the historic Central Hall of India's Parliament (Sansad Bhawan), Jagjit Singh rendered the last Moghul Emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar's famous ghazal "Lagta nahin hai dil mera" to commemorate the 150th anniversary of India's First War of Independence (1857). President A P J Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Vice-President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee, Congress President Sonia Gandhi and dignitaries including former Prime Ministers, Members of Parliament, Foreign Ambassadors and High Commissioners were in attendance.[4]

Jagjit Singh underwent surgery after he suffered a brain hemorrhage.[5] Doctors at the hospital performed an emergency surgery on Singh. Dr Ajit Menon, a cardiologist, Lilavati Hospital, said, "He suffered a brain hemorrhage and underwent a surgery to remove clots in his brain. His condition is critical". The doctors continued to monitor him in the intensive care unit. He was breathing with the aid of a ventilator. Singh had a history of heart ailments. In January 1998, he suffered a heart attack, which led him to quit smoking. In October 2007, he was hospitalised following blood circulation problems.

Before this illness, his last major concert was held on 16 September 2011 in Nehru Science Centre, Mumbai. His last concert was held on 20 September 2011 in The Indian Public School, Dehradun. He died on 10 October 2011 at the age of 70 in Mumbai at Lilavati hospital.


Posted by Rajesh Dixit on October 5, 2011 at 9:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Dussehra Festival

This celebration starts from Navratri and ends with the tenth day festival of “Dussehra”. Navratri and Dussehra is celebrated throughout the country at the same time, with varying rituals, but with great enthusiasm and energy as it marks the end of scorching summer and the start of winter season.

The tenth day after Navratri is called Dussehra, on which number of fairs are organized throughout the northern India, burning effigies of Ravana.It is also called “Vijayadashmi” as this day marks the victory of Lord Rama over Ravana. VijayaDashami is considered to be an auspicious day for the Indian householder, on which he worships, protects and preserves 'Shakti' (power). According to Scriptures, by worshipping the 'Shakti' on these nine-days the householders attain the threefold power i.e. physical, mental and spiritual, which helps him to progress in life without any difficulty.

The 'Ramlila' - an enactment of the life of Lord Rama, is held during the nine days preceding Dussehra. On the tenth day (Dussehra or Vijay Dasami), larger than life effigies of Ravana, his son and brother - Meghnadh and Kumbhakarna are set to fire.

The theatrical enactment of this dramatic encounter is held throughout the country in which every section of people participates enthusiastically.

In burning the effigies the people are asked to burn the evil within them, and thus follow the path of truth and goodness, bearing in mind the instance of Ravana, who despite all his might and majesty was destroyed for his evil ways.

Dussehra is also known as Vijaya Dasami, because of the victory of Ram over Ravana. On this day in Satya Yug, Ram (the eighth incarnation ofLord Vishnu), killed the great demon and king of Lanka, Ravana.

Puranas also opined that in this day warrior Goddess Durga defeated and killed the buffalo demon Mahishasura.


Posted by Rajesh Dixit on September 30, 2011 at 9:40 PM Comments comments (0)

पुरातन काल में दुर्गम नामक दैत्य हुआ। उसने भगवान ब्रह्मा को प्रसन्न कर सभी वेदों को अपने वश में कर लिया जिससे देवताओं का बल क्षीण हो गया। तब दुर्गम ने देवताओं को हराकर स्वर्ग पर कब्जा कर लिया। तब देवताओं को देवी भगवती का स्मरण हुआ। देवताओं ने शुंभ-निशुंभ, मधु-कैटभ तथा चण्ड-मुण्ड का वध करने वाली शक्ति का आह्वान किया।

देवताओं के आह्वान पर देवी प्रकट हुईं। उन्होंने देवताओं से उन्हें बुलाने का कारण पूछा। सभी देवताओं ने एक स्वर में बताया कि दुर्गम नामक दैत्य ने सभी वेद तथा स्वर्ग पर अपना अधिकार कर लिया है तथा हमें अनेक यातनाएं दी हैं। आप उसका वध कर दीजिए। देवताओं की बात सुनकर देवी ने उन्हें दुर्गम का वध करने का आश्वासन दिया। यह बात जब दैत्यों का राज दुर्गम को पता चली तो उसने देवताओं पर पुन: आक्रमण कर दिया। तब माता भगवती ने देवताओं की रक्षा की तथा दुर्गम की सेना का संहार कर दिया। सेना का संहार होते देख दुर्गम स्वयं युद्ध करने आया।

तब माता भगवती ने काली, तारा, छिन्नमस्ता, श्रीविद्या, भुवनेश्वरी, भैरवी, बगला आदि कई सहायक शक्तियों का आह्वान कर उन्हें भी युद्ध करने के लिए प्रेरित किया। भयंकर युद्ध में भगवती ने दुर्गम का वध कर दिया। दुर्गम नामक दैत्य का वध करने के कारण भी भगवती का नाम दुर्गा के नाम से भी विख्यात हुआ।