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Khayyam named for Hridaynath Award for lifetime achievement

National Award winning music director Mohammed Zahur Khayyam Hashmi, famous as ‘Khayyam’, has been named for this year’s Hridaynath Award for Lifetime Achievement, an official said here on Monday.

Instituted by the Hridayesh Arts, the award carries a cash prize of Rs 100,000 and a memento and shall be conferred by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at a function here on October 26 with Culture Minister Vinod Tawde and other dignitaries in attendance.

Avinash Prabhavalkar, an official of Hridayesh Arts, said the award ceremony coincides with the 81st birthday of Hridaynath Mangeshkar after whom it is named.

Hridaynath is the only and youngest brother of the legendary Mangeshkar singer-sisters – Lata, Asha, Usha and Meena, all children of the great composer, Deenanath Mangeshkar.

The veteran composer, lyricist and writer Khayyam, 91, started his music career in Ludhiana in 1943 at the age of 17. Later, the Padma Bhushan awardee teamed up as Sharma of the music-director duo ‘Sharmaji-Varmaji’ to compose music for films like “Heer Ranjha” (1948) and others.

However, after Partition, when his partner Rahman Varma moved to Pakistan, Khayyam continued solo and his earliest notable works were for “Footpath” (1953) in which Talat Mehmood’s song “Shaam-e-Gham ki Kasam, Aaj Gamgeen Hain Hum” and the film “Biwi” in which a song sung by Mohammed Rafi, “Akele mein woh, ghabrate toh honge”, and other major films like “Phir Subah Hogi” (1958) with Mukesh’s “Woh subah, kabhi to aayegi”, were the rage.

It was the 1961 blockbuster “Shola Aur Shabnam” which firmly established Khayyam as a top-notch music director followed by films with superhit music like “Mohabbat Isko Kehta Hain” (1965) and “Aakhri Khat” (1966), that was the late superstar Rajesh Khanna’s debut film with memorable songs like “Bahaaron, Mera Jeevan Bhi Savaaron”.

Later, he composed music for films like “Kabhi Kabhi” (1976), “Trishul” (1978), “Noorie” (1979), “Thodisi Bewafai” (1980), “Dard” and “Ahista Ahista” (1981), “Dil, Akhir Dil Hai” and “Bazaar”(1982), “Razia Sultan” (1983).

In 1981, he composed music for the sensitive blockbuster film “Umrao Jaan”, ranked among the all time best Bollywood films and considered the jewel in the crown of Khayyam’s compositions, for which he bagged the National Award, and also a Filmfare Award, besides a string of other honours.

In 2016, Khayyam and his singer-wife Jagjit Kaur endeared themselves to the masses when they set up the ‘Khayyam-Jagjit Kaur KPG Charitable Trust’ in memory of their actor-son Pradeep who passed away in 2012, and donated their entire wealth to be utilized to fund upcoming artistes and technicians in Bollywood.

The other past recipients of the awards are Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Amitabh Bachchan, Sulochana Latkar, AR Rahman, Pandit Jasraj, and Javed Akhtar, besides chess champ Vishwanathan Anand.

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