14 August 2013 | jmathur_swayamprabha
Watan Pe Jo Fida Hoga, Amar Woh Naujawan Hoga ...
During a period of less than a decade (1962-1971), India had to face three wars forced on her by the enemies in her neighbourhood, i.e, China and Pakistan. We were backstabbed by China in 1962 and suffered a humiliating loss. However we inflicted crushing defeats on another enemy, Pakistan in 1965 and 1971. We did not initiate any of these wars on our own, we only defended our land when attacked by the concerned wicked neighbour. Indian population suffered a lot of hardships and Indian economy was hit hard on account of these wars but we kept our head high with pride. These developments on the borders led to the making of many patriotic movies in Bollywood. One of them is Phool Bane Angaare (1963) starring Maala Sinha, Raaj Kumar and debutante Aashish Kumar in principal roles.
Phool Bane Angaare (flowers turned into cinders) starts with the love story of an army officer Captain Raajesh (Raaj Kumar) and a simple fatherless girl - Usha (Maala Sinha). Usha's father had passed away long back and she lives with her widow mother and a brother who is several years younger to her - Aashish (Sushil Kumar). She only runs the household by her earnings through tuition. Due to negative happenings in their neighbourhood and seeing his buddy suffering in the hands of the mother-in-law of his widow sister, Aashish becomes insecure and starts feeling that if his sister gets married, he would have to suffer the same way in her in-laws' household after the death of his mother. Considering the feelings of her young brother who is very dear to her, Usha postpones the execution of her marriage plan. Meantime Raajesh is sent abroad by the army on a difficult mission from which he is not able to return for many years.
During this period of Raajesh's absence, his widow mother (Mumtaaz Begum) lives alone getting older and sick on one hand, Usha fosters her younger brother Aashish (their mother passes away during this timespan) who has now grown-up into a youth (Aashish Kumar). Aashish falls into love with a rich but spoiled girl Kamla (Nasreen) and marries her against the wish of his motherlike elder sister, i.e., Usha who knows the defective personality of Kamla beforehand (because she used to take her tuition). Post this marriage, Kamla starts misbehaving with her unmarried sister-in-law, i.e., Usha and Aashish being a henpecked husband, only adds insult to the injury of his sacrificing elder sister. Usha leaves the parental home and destiny makes her the governess of Raajesh's ailing mother, thus bringing her to that house only which is supposed to be her Sasuraal (in-laws' home). Raajesh's mother had never seen the girl whom her son had been in love with and wanted to marry but she is won over by the nature, behaviour and service of Usha. Raajesh comes back after many years only to find his sweetheart in his home only. His mother comes to know the reality of Usha and she arranges their marriage with utmost joy.
On the other side, Aashish who has always been a non-earning person, first sells the parental house under the influence of his wife and her brother (Mukri) but even then, there is no end to his humiliation in his own home. Finally, he leaves home and joins army. China attacks India and war breaks out. Not only the husband (Raajesh) and the brother (Aashish) of Usha involve in the war as the Indian soldiers but Usha also contributes to the nation's cause as a nurse. Raajesh is injured in the war but he comes home where Aashish happens to die due to injuries in front of his loving sister Usha only, repenting for his guilt done to his sister in his dying moments.
The problem of Phool Bane Angaare is that it's theme is not completely focused on patriotism. It starts as a romantic movie and thereafter remains a family drama for the major part of it. The issue of defending the frontiers of the motherland and the patriotism required for that comes in the final part of the movie only. However in the final reels, the significance of patriotism has been underscored very well which was the need of the hour then (and is today as well).
Kalyanji Anandji have composed good music for the movie using the beautiful lyrics of Anand Bakshi. Other than the patriotic song - Watan Pe Jo Fida Hoga (sung by Mohammad Rafi), the movie contains my favourite admiring song in the voice of Mukesh - Chaand Aahen Bharega, Phool Dil Thaam Lenge, Husn Ki Baat Chali To Sab Tera Naam Lenge.
The title of the movie is as such due to a line of the patriotic song - Watan Pe Jo Fida Hoga, Amar Woh Naujawan Hoga - Chaman Waalon Ki Gairat Ko Hai Sayyaadon Ne Lalkaara; Utho, Har Phool Se Keh Do Ki Ban Jaaye Woh Angaara; Nahin To Doston, Ruswa Hamaara Gulsitaan Hoga (The self-respect of the residents of the garden has been challenged by the fowlers; rise up and ask every flower to turn into a cinder; lest O friends, our garden should be defamed). Today, after half a century, the scenario is no different for India. Hence these lines are very relevant today also for our country and the countrymen.