indian cinema heritage foundation

Hamida Banu

  • Born: 19 October, 1928 (Lahore, British India)
  • Died: 9 November, 2006
  • Primary Cinema: Hindi

Singer Hamida Banu is known for rendering playback for films such as Sanjog (1943), Raunaq (1944), Amar Raj (1946), Neel Kamal (1947), Zevarat (1949), Chor (1950), Rajput (1951), Anjaam (1952), and Shree 420 (chorus playback singer, 1955). She was a contemporary of singers such as Mohammed Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar in the early age of playback singing in Hindi cinema. Some of her memorable songs include Kuch bhi na kaha from Parai Aag (1948) and Dono hain majboor pyare from Bikhare Moti (1951), which had music scored by a former assistant of Naushad - Ghulam Mohammed. She also rendered duets with fellow singers Suraiya in Main Kya Karoon (1945) and Geeta Dutt in Rajput (1951). As a producer, she also has films to her credit such as Pyar Ki Baazi (1967) and Gehra Raaz (1971). Active during the 1940s, she left for Pakistan in 1956. 

Hamida Banu was born on 19 October, 1928 in Lahore. Her family resettled in Bombay, when she was young. She was given a break by C Ramachandra on the recommendation of actor Bhagwan; however, her first song was released in the film Sanjog (1943) which was scored by Naushad. She rendered the song Kaun gali ka chhora pukare in the film.

Starting her career in playback singing for films while in her teens, Hamida Bano sang for Prithviraj Kapoor’s plays in Calcutta. She also appeared onscreen in a few films, on the recommendation of Kapoor’s son, Raj Kapoor. Making strides as a singer, by age 26, she had worked with leading music directors such as Naushad and Gyan Dutt.

She rendered playback for films such as Anban (1944), Sawan (1945), Neel Kamal (1947), Rimjhim (1949), Bikhare Moti (1951), and Majboori (1954). 

Hamida Bano was, however, unsuccessful in carving a lasting career in the competitive realm of playback singing. Her last assignment as a playback singer was in 1954 for Majboori, which had music scored by Robin Chatterji. She moved to Pakistan in 1956. She also featured onscreen in the films Zara Bachke (1959) and Black Arrow (1965). 

Hamida Bano passed away on 9 November, 2006.


Image Courtesy: Cinestaan