Sahir’s father had named him as Abdul Hayee not out of love but out of hatred for his neighbour whose name was also the same (Abdul Hayee). Sahir’s father (an illiterate) always believed that he was the only son of a wealthy landlord. So why should his son take up good education or job that did not add any value at all. On the contrary his mother firmly believed that Sahir should go in for higher education so that he would be able to earn his own livelihood. When Sahir was in his early teens his parents separated. He opted to leave behind the aristocratic life that he was enjoying when his parents were together and the struggle for finances slowly started to begin now post his parent’s separation. Sahir stayed with his mother till the end.
Matters Of The Heart
Sahir (meaning magician) as the name suggests he was truly a magician of words who spent over 30 years of his life associated with Bollywood, wrote over 680 songs for over 100 movies. He had captivated the heart of several women during his life time through the power of written words but always failed in the matters of the heart not once but couple of times. He was lucky to fall in love but couldn't be happier and remained bachelor all his life. His intense love affair was with Amrita Pritam who became his most ardent fan.
There was a time when Sahir's economic position was weak and owning a house was next to impossible. When Sahir was courting Amrita Pritam, he built a taller house in front of Amrita's residence in Ludhiana to prove to her father that today even he could afford to have his own house. Statement is a fallacy derived from the Hindi film Tere Ghar Ke Samne.
Shayar of All Times
While in college Sahir had established his reputation for being a good writer, wrote fiery speeches and was equally popular for his ghazals and nazms. Sahir was a restless person and could not sit in one place for long. It was evident he had the literary talent but that could not give him stability so he decided to contribute his work for Bollywood in a way to give him financial stability.
The initial days of struggle still continued in Bollywood for Sahir for a couple of years but later he created some of the most popular songs ever. Some of his everlasting songs included, Yeh raat yeh chandni phir kahan, Jayento Jayen Kahan, Jaane who kaise log the jinke pyaar ko pyar mila.
His thoughts seen in Kabhi Kabhie: "Main pal do pal ka shayar hoon . . . Pal do pal meri kahani hai. Masaruf zamana mere liye kyon waqt apna barbad kare" (I'm a poet for a second or two . . . why would the busy world waste its time on me). These words pretty much gives the audience his approach to life.
Sahir’s work gave him fame, money, rewards and recognition but that did not help him find a life partner with whom he could settle down in life. He encountered several beautiful women on his roads to achievements but most of them backed out when it came to giving marriage commitment. Sahir fell in love several times but those relationships never culminated into marriage. In fact he enjoyed his failures in love. He wrote poems as a tribute to his lost loves.
Even today, he is well remembered for his poems than for his loves. ‘Chalo ek baar phir se ajnabee ban jaaye hum dono’were Sahir’s feelings into words when he spotted his estranged lady love Sudha Malhotra at a party. The same was immortalized by B R Chopra in his film, Gumraah. Today’s generation of songs may bore listeners after a week of their production whereas some have been soothing the ears of people for several decades. Lyrics of Sahir Ludhianvi have been no exception.