Veteran lyricist-poet Gulzar turns 88 on Thursday. The iconic lyricist whose career spans over six decades, had explored a variety of songs and given words to a plethora of human emotions. As fans would know, Gulzar has also penned Aishwarya Rai’s hit dance song from the film Bunty and Babli. However, what fans wouldn’t know is the inspiration behind the upbeat number.
In a 2006 interview with Hindustan Times, Gulzar spoke about the lyrics of the song. He said, “Serious poetry would have been out of place here. The song is inspired primarily by the lines that one sees written on trucks speeding up and down the highways in north India. Remember that the female protagonist is from a Punjabi family. She throws around a smattering of English because her ambition is to be a beauty pageant contestant. The boy, too, is a small town guy in a hurry to get ahead in life.”
Helmed by Shaad Ali, Kajra Re featured Amitabh Bachchan, his son Abhishek Bachchan and the latter’s wife Aishwarya dancing together. The film was released in 2005.
Bunty Aur Babli was also adapted for a remake in 2021. It features Saif Ali Khan and Rani Mukerji as the original Bunty and Babli. This comedy pits two sets of con artists, from different generations, against each other as they try to prove who is the better con-couple! The film failed to impress audience.
Gulzar whose birth name is Sampoorna Singh Kalra has given the nation a new vocabulary to love and live with. The iconic lyricist began his journey with Mera Gora Rang Lei Le (Bandini, 1963). In his career span of over seven decades, the legendary lyricist has earned several accolades including an Academy Award, a Grammy, and about five National Film Awards. To pay tribute to his notable work in the industry, the government of India also felicitated him with the Padma Bhushan back in 2013.
Gulzar has written lyrics for many popular films such as Hu Tu Tu, Asoka, Fiza, Aks, Leela, Filhaal, Saathiya, Maqbool, Pinjar, Raincoat, Paheli, Guru, Omkara, Yuvraaj, Firaaq, Kaminey, Ishqiya, Veer, Haider, Drishyam and Kill Dill.