Today, Biswajit Chatterjee brings in his birthday with a musical show in Delhi. The veteran actor will not only be singing chartbusters from his Bollywood blockbusters like Mere Sanam’s “Pukarta chala hoon main”, “Yeh nayan dare dare” from Kohra and Bees Saal Baad’s “Beqaraar karke hume yun na jayeye”, but also has some popular patriotic songs in his playlist.
“In my shows, I have always dedicated certain songs to senior actor like Dilip Kumar sahab (“Suhana safar”), Raj Kapoor sahab (“Awaara hoon”) and Dev Kumar sahab (“Hai apna dil to aawara”). As this is the 75th year of India’s Independence, I decided to offer my shraddhanjali to the jawans (soldiers) and shaheeds (martyrs) and have included songs like “Aye mere watan ke logo”, “Hum uss desh ke wasi hain jis desh mein Ganga behti”, “Mera joota hai Japani” and “Saare jahan se achcha Hindustan humara” along with my popular hits,” he informs. Union Minister of Minority Affairs, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi is the chief guest.
This is not the first time that the actor has brought in his special day with a song on his lips. “Several times in the past too, I have celebrated with a musical show hosted in my birthday week. Back in 2019, there was one at Mumbai’s St. Andrews auditorium. This one was planned for 2020, but had to be cancelled because of Covid,” he shares.
Point out that Delhi is chilly and he laughs, “I’m used to the cold, we’ve shot in freezing temperature. It’s the heat that worries me.”
On the subject of the on-going pandemic, with the threat of Omicron looming large, he reasons that for almost two years we locked ourselves in our homes. “If we don’t step out now and make an attempt to resume our lives, we will become paranoid and invalid,” he maintains.
Even before he came to Mumbai, Biswajit, who was an HMV artiste since 196,1 and has also recorded for other labels like Megaphone and Polydor, was doing shows all over Bengal, in Kharagpur, Jamshedpur and Siliguri. “Those days, we had Hemant Kumar-Biswajit Nite and Manna Dey-Biswajit Nite. The legends would start and continue till around midnight, after which they would pass on the baton to me and I would carry on till dawn,” he reminisces.
Once Biswajit entered Bollywood, his reach and playlist increased with hits like Bees Saal, Night in London, Asra, Kohra, Do Kaliyan, April Fool and Kismat. And “Pukarta chala” he went all over the world.
He was at London’s Wembley Stadium with Lata Mangeshkar, performed in Birmingham with Asha Bhonsle and went to Singapore and Malaysia with Usha Mangeshkar, Asha Parekh and Shashi Kapoor. He toured the West Indies—Guyana, Georgetown and Trinidad—and was in Kuwait for a show with Salma Agha, Poonam Dhillon and Suresh Wadhar.
“I’ve been in Delhi many times, performing twice with Ghulam Ali sahab and once with Reshma. In Gujarat, I’ve been in Surat, Baroda and Ahmedabad with Babla and his orchestra. At the Rajkot show two years ago, then Chief Minister Vijay Rupani’s wife was present,” he says.
And how’s the birthday boy feeling? “Well, there’s a sense of loss following the demise of Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat and 12 others in the helicopter crash. I’m a soldier’s son, my father was a doctor in the Indian army, and I’m heartbroken. Jai Hind to these Bravehearts and all those who protect our border so we can live our lives safely,” signs off Biswajit who was conferred the ‘Indian Personality of the Year’ Award at the International Film Festival of India in Goa earlier this year.