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Updated February 26th, 2024 at 17:01 IST

Pankaj Udhas Initially Turned Down His Most Popular Song Chitthi Aayee Hai In Sanjay Dutt's Naam

Pankaj Udhas breathed his last on February 26. The veteran classical singer was renowned for giving his voice to several popular Ghazals.

Pankaj Udhas
Pankaj Udhas | Image:Pankaj Udhas/Instagram
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Veteran singer Pankaj Udhas breathed his last on February 26. The family of the Padmashri awardee issued a statement confirming the news of his tragic passing. With more than 50 albums under his belt and some ever-green film songs including Chitthi Aayee Hai and Jeeye To Jeeye Kaise, the singer had a career spanning over 4 years. However, in an old interview, the singer mentioned that he had initially refused to sing the song Chitthi Aayi Hai for which he was most notably known for. 

Pankaj Udhas refused to sing Chitthi Aayi Hai for THIS reason 

In an old interview with Lehren, the Ghazal singer recalled initially refusing to sing the classical song Chitthi Aayi Hai initially. Featured in the Sanjay Dutt starrer film Naam, the song is still remembered as one of the most iconic songs by the actor. The singer recalled, “When this film was being made, I was considered for this particular song. Salim Khan Sahab had written the story. Mahesh Bhatt Sahab was the director of the film. Rajendra Kumar was the producer. They all felt that this song should be sung by a real-life singer and not an actor on the stage. The situation in the film is that there is a live concert and there’s a singer singing the song. Then there’s a change of heart as far as Sanjay Dutt is concerned and he comes back. So, they wanted a real-life singer. They needed a singer who was popular and known by the masses. So, they considered me. So, when the producer asked me to do this song, he didn’t tell me this idea. But instead, he said, ‘Pankaj, you have to appear in our film.’ And I got scared. He told me that the film features his son Kumar Gaurav and Sanjay Dutt and I’ll have to be a part of the film too.” 

The singer admitted that he did not want to think of himself as an actor which is why he had his reservations on being in front of actor. He added, “I got scared because I never was cut out to be an actor in the first place. And I never wanted to be an actor. My focus has always been singing. I told Rajendra Kumar ji that I’ll revert soon. But, I didn’t call him back. He really got mad then. Then he called my eldest brother, Manoj Ji. They are best of friends. He called Manoj Ji and said, ‘Your brother has no etiquette and no courtesy. Koi tameez nahi hai.’ Manoj Ji then called me and asked me, ‘What’s the problem?’ So, I told him that I can’t act in movies. So my brother suggested that if I don’t want to act in the film, I must call the producer and tell him. So, I called him, apologized and said that I don’t want to act in the film. He said, ‘Who asked you to act in the film?’ He then told me that he wants me to appear in the film as Pankaj Udhas.” The song went on to become history and was featured in 100 songs of the Millennium by BBC Radio. 

Pankaj Udas dies at 72

Taking to her Instagram, Nayaab shared a heartfelt post informing the veteran singer's fans about his death. The post read, "With a very heavy heart, we are saddened to inform you of the sad demise of Padmashri Pankaj Udhas on February 26 due to prolonged illness."

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Published February 26th, 2024 at 17:01 IST

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