|Ram Tahal Choudhary ko jitana, hai kamal chhap par button dabana.. Stills from Hum Aapke Hain Koun...! (above) and The Dirty Picture, both Bolly inspirations for BJP poll ditties
Ae mere watan ke logon, zara aankh mein bhar lo paani. This poignant song dedicated to martyrs of the Indo-Chinese war, penned by well-known poet Pradeep and sung by Bharat Ratna Lata Mangeshkar, had famously moved Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to tears. Now, half a century later, the melody is the same but lyrics are changed to give IPS-turned-cricket-boss-turned-JVM MP hopeful from Ranchi seat Amitabh Choudhary a musical edge.
“Ae Ranchi shahar ke logon, chunav ko samjho chunauti, chuno aisa saccha sathi jaise Amitabh Choudhary,” goes the new song in a voice that is nowhere near legendary.
But as far as lyrics go, they do make their point: “Jaat paat jo chod nata vikas se jodo; Jharkhand Vikas Morcha ka chunav nishan hai kainchi”. It is a crisp and competent mix of information and ideology — shun vote bank politics of caste, embrace development, vote for JVM whose symbol is a pair of scissors.
The man on the street has mixed feelings. “Acha gana ko bhi politics mein barbad kar diya (a good song is ruined in politics),” a rickshaw puller said as a JVM campaign vehicle passed through Harmu Road on Wednesday night.
A trucker was more forgiving. “Politics mein sab chalta hai (everything goes in politics),” he said.
JVM’s election in-charge and general secretary Rajeev Ranjan Prasad justified the new song with the changed lyrics. “There is nothing wrong in changing the words of this legendary patriotic song, because it is neither our national anthem nor our national song,” he said.
The BJP — to be more precise former Assembly Speaker C.P. Singh’s personal assistant Sanjeev Gupta — is no less creative.
Gupta, who’s discovering his poetic gift in the hurly-burly of electioneering, has paraphrased two superhit ditties — Lata’s Didi tera tewar deewana from Madhuri Dixit-Salman Khan monster hit Hum Aap Ke Hain Koun...! (1994) and the Bappi Lahiri-Shreya Ghoshal duet Oo la la from the Vidya Balan superhit The Dirty Picture (2011).
Gupta hopes the new lyrics of these superhit songs would be victory anthems for BJP nominee from Ranchi and old hand Ram Tahal Choudhary.
Set to Didi tera dewar deewana, comes Ram Tahal Choudhary ko jitana, hai kamal chhap par button dabana.
The naughty-but-catchy Oo la la has racy lyrics “chutki jo tune kati hai, tune kati hai yahan wahan”. Unbelievably, they have been rendered respectable with “vote dena hai, button dabana hai, kamal chhap pe”.
Gupta added that the words of a famous Nagpuri song, “Ay hamar poonam re juda na howe” had been changed to “Ram Tahal Choudhary ke vijay banawa mili juli ke”.
Jharkhand’s got talent.