Lag Ja Gale Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi

Maybe only a hardcore fanatic like me would know this, but today (September 28th) is Lata Mangeshkar’s birthday! Mrs 55 and I would like to wish our favorite melody queen many happy returns of the day as she turns 83 years young.

Lata Mangeshkar (1929- )

Given this special occasion, I have decided to share one of my all-time favorite songs sung by Lata Mangeshkar: lag jaa gale from Raj Khosla’s classic film noir Woh Kaun Thi? (1964). I am often asked to name my favorite Lata song, but I find this request to be challenging because there are simply too many gems to narrow it down to one choice. Instead, I feel compelled to produce a list and I can say that this song consistently makes my top ten compilation of personal favorites rendered by India’s beloved nightingale.

Sadhana displays an ethereal beauty in Woh Kaun Thi? (1964)

Penned by Raja Mehndi Ali Khan and composed by Madan Mohan, this song has been immortalized as a veritable gem of the Hindi film music industry. Through an expression of carpe diem philosophy, these lyrics encourage listeners to live in the moment and cherish their loved ones now before the opportunity escapes in the future. The beautiful simplicity of these lyrics is enhanced by a sublime melody crafted by Madan Mohan–one of his career’s finest. Lata Mangeshkar’s voice is also at its heavenly best here, and her flawless rendition takes this song to the next level. It is certainly no mystery why this song has survived the test of time as one of Bollywood’s most cherished musical numbers. As you follow along with our translation and glossary below, I hope that you enjoy this masterpiece whose beauty has brought joy to countless listeners (myself included!) over the years.

-Mr. 55

Lag Ja Gale: Lyrics and Translation

lag jaa gale ki phir yah hasii.n raat ho na ho
Embrace me, for this beautiful night may come no more. 
shayad phir is janam me.n mulaaqaat ho na ho
Perhaps, in this life, we may never meet again.

ham ko milii hai.n aaj ye ghaDiyaa.n nasiib se
We are fortunate to share these moments today.
jii bhar ke dekh liijiye ham ko qariib se
Wholeheartedly take a look at me from up close,
phir aap ke nasiib me.n yah baat ho na ho
As your fate may never hold this opportunity again.
shayad phir is janam me.n mulaaqaat ho na ho
Perhaps, in this life, we may never meet again. 

paas aaiye ki ham nahii.n aaye.nge baar baar
Come close to me, for I will not return again and again.
baahe.n gale me.n Daal ke ham ro le.n zaar-zaar
Wrapping my arms around your neck, I will continue to weep. 
aa.nkho.n se phir yah pyaar kii barsaat ho na ho
My eyes may never shed such a storm of love again. 
shayad phir is janam me.n mulaaqaat ho na ho
Perhaps, in this life, we may never meet again.

lag jaa gale ki phir yah hasii.n raat ho na ho
Embrace me, for this beautiful night may come no more. 


gale lag jaanaa: to embrace; hasii.n: beautiful; janam: birth, life; mulaaqaat: meeting;  ghaDiyaa.n: moments; nasiib se: fortunately; nasiib: fate, destiny; jii bhar ke: wholeheartedly; qariib se: up close; baahe.n: arms; galaa: neck; zaar-zaar ro lenaa: to weep continuously; barsaat: storm.

Sadhana enchants Manoj Kumar with her mysterious allure in Woh Kaun Thi? (1964)

14 thoughts on “Lag Ja Gale Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi

  1. One of my all time favorites!!! Thank you for the translation, this is a very beautiful song and Lata did it perfectly, as usual. What a great blog!

  2. You people are doing a great job for us all! Thnx a billion time!
    I just discovered this website! U should start a Youtube channel as well to get mre crowds. U people deserve it!

  3. Terrific post and many happy returns to Lata-ji and her charmin fans, including Mr and Mrs 55
    Agree that this is one of her best songs, particularly or perhaps because of the simpicity and purity of the lyrics and music.
    Keep up the good job, guys!

  4. Hauntingly romantic song !

    If I had to choose a singer-musician pair in Bollywood, it would be Lata Mangeshkar singing to Madan Mohan’s tunes, Hands Down Always !!! They rendered so many immortal songs together, that it’s difficult to choose any one.
    A case in point – all of “Mera Saya” songs 🙂

    Good work , Mr & Mrs 55.

  5. Hauntingly melodious song! One of those songs that’s etched in my memory forever.
    Lata & MM duo have given us some amazing songs, but I love Raja Mehndi Ali Khan and MM combo too.
    I’m a big time fan of Manoj Kumar’s earlier (b/w) movies. But this is one song where I just cant take my eyes off Sadhana though he’s looking absolutely dashing himself.
    It’s mesmerizing in every way possible!

    I can never decide on my favorite song. There are just so many of them 🙂

  6. Pingback: Shokh Nazar Ki Bijliyan Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi | Mr. & Mrs. 55 - Classic Bollywood Revisited!

  7. Pure poetry evoking such deep and sweet emotions. From a subjective point of view, no one can beat Indian lyricists, composers, and singers!

  8. This has reached the Number 1 spot for me! I love the 40s, 50s and early 60s Bollywood songs. (I left India in December 1960) The scene for this song played by Sadhana can only be described as an inspired performance. Shreya Ghoshal’s rendering of this is so true to the original by Lata and so wonderful as well. Thank you for the translation.

  9. salaams, pranaam
    i have zeroed in on your site…brilliant and shole hearted efforts !!
    congrats to All and thank you, shukfiyaa, merci beaucoup, shukran, dhanngawaad, ndzikomo!!
    carry on please and best wishes

    your noble efforts, over and above the other benefits will help develop and revive the urdu and hindi langusges as well as help newcomers to learn the bollywood hindi as thismedium has universal appeal and via the original songs with their impact and appeal your site can help others develop language learning programmes

    suggestion : to further add and develop your vocab. section (this will help beginners) add meaning of each individual letter…egs ye =this galaa = neck (literal) ke= as, because ye=this


    aaimz bolton lancashire u.k

    Abdul ismail zumla b.pharm cardiff uk

Leave a Reply to Arjun Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s