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Music composer Anil Biswas passes away

Press Trust of India

Posted: May 31, 2003 at 1514 hrs IST

Music composer Anil Biswas, who introduced great playback singers Mukesh and Talat Mehmood and the concept of orchestra into the Indian celluloid world, passed away on Saturday morning.

The end came after a brief chest ailment. He was 89 and is survived by two sons and a daughter. The cremation would take place on Sunday, his daughter, Shikha Vohra said.

She said her brothers, based in Mumbai, had followed the footsteps of Biswas as music composers and would reach Delhi on Saturday.

Son Utpal Biswas - part of famous music group Amar Utpal - has composed music for Amitabh Bachchan starrer Shahensah and Main Azad Hoon. The other son Amit Biswas has recently started a digital studio in Mumbai, she said.

Biswas introduced Bengali folk music and orchestra for the playback songs and background music and they became an integral part of Hindi movies and songs.

Referred fondly in the movie circle as Bhishm Pitamah of film music, Biswas composed music for a large number of movies before he came to Delhi in 1965 to join All India Radio as director of the national orchestra.

The unforgettable music composed by Biswas for Dil Jalta Hei To Jalne Do sung by Mukesh for the movie Pehli Nazar in 1945 propped him as a singer who was to dominate playback singing for many decades to come.

It was Biswas again who gave chance to Talat Mehmood in the film Arzoo in 1949 to sing one of the best songs Yeh Dil Mujhe Aisi Jagah Le Chal Jahan Koi Na Ho.

Born in 1914 in a nondescript village Barisal in then East Bengal, Biswas became a freedom fighter at a young age but his artistic talents drew him to Kolkata and he got associated with the famous Bengali poet Qazi Nurul Hasan and the Rang Mahal theatre.

Like anybody trying a career in films, he went to Mumbai in 1934 to begin his career as a music composer with the wealth of experience he had amassed during his theatre days in Kolkata.

He did not have to wait much. He composed music for the film Dharam Ki DeviDevi the very next year of his arrival in Mumbai. And there was no looking back for him.

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