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Remembering the true Bharat Ratna Ameen Sayani: The Iconic Voice of India


Remembering the true Bharat Ratna Ameen Sayani: The Iconic Voice of India

Remembering the true Bharat Ratna Ameen Sayani: The Iconic Voice of India

In the chronicles of Indian broadcasting history, a voice will always exist that has transcended generations and brought families, friends and communities together around crackling radio sets to enjoy the OG golden era of Indian music. This voice was of Ameen Sayani, a broadcasting legend whose name will forever be etched in India’s memory and of millions across the nation.

Born on December 21, 1932, Ameen Sayani’s journey began in an era when radio was the primary source of entertainment for Indian households. His distinctive baritone, warm demeanour, and impeccable diction captured the hearts of listeners, earning him a place of reverence in the world of broadcasting. Ameen Sayani’s iconic show, “Binaca Geetmala,” became a cultural phenomenon and a household name. For over four decades, Sayani mesmerized audiences with his countdown of the top Bollywood songs of the week, punctuated by his trademark catchphrases, like “Bheno aur Bhayio” and “Aur yeh hai ‘Binaca Geetmala’!”

But Ameen Sayani was more than just a voice on the radio; he was a cultural ambassador who played a pivotal role in shaping the musical landscape of India. His passion for music, coupled with his deep understanding of the Indian audience’s tastes, made him an influential tastemaker in the industry. In today’s world, he would have been the most significant influencer online for music. 

In addition to “Binaca Geetmala,” Ameen Sayani lent his voice to several other iconic radio programs, including “Sangeet Sarita,” “Jaimala,” and “Ghazals by Ameen Sayani.” His versatility as a broadcaster allowed him to explore different genres of music and connect with listeners of all ages.

Even as the landscape of Indian broadcasting evolved with television and digital media, Ameen Sayani’s legacy endured. His influence on subsequent generations of broadcasters and his contribution to the Indian music industry continue to be celebrated to this day.

At the age of 91 years, he passed yesterday, February 20, 2024. Where his physical presence may have left the world, his voice will be remembered and immortalized in the hearts and minds of millions of fans who grew up listening to him and many who were introduced to the brilliant Mr Sayani by the elders in the house and grew up mimicking his style. 

We need to bid farewell to Ameen Sayani not only for his remarkable contributions to Indian radio but also for the joy, sense of unity, calmness, smiles, laughter, and nostalgia he brought into our lives. Something the nation needs desperately, like a vaccination in the current climate of hatred. 

Looking at Ameen Sayani’s legacy, it becomes evident that he is a true Bharat Ratna of India, embodying the spirit of excellence, service, and national pride. His contributions to Indian broadcasting have left a lasting imprint on the nation’s cultural landscape, inspiring generations of broadcasters and music enthusiasts. 

I wish he was awarded the Bharat Ratna as how he touched the hearts of millions across age groups without the digital world and through just sound waves is unbelievable.

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