Rahe Na Rahe Hum Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi

Suchitra Sen Ashok Kumar Mamta

Ashok Kumar and Suchitra Sen star in the beautiful Asit Sen film Mamta (1966).

Today we showcase the lyrics and English translation of the melodious “Rahe Na Rahe Hum” from the film Mamta (1966). This gentle beauty sung by Lata Mangeshkar captures an inspiring philosophy on losing a loved one. An optimistic melody balances the tragic sentiments of its lyrics. While Ashok Kumar must leave Suchitra Sen to study law abroad, he pledges his loyalty to her upon the forthcoming separation and asks her to sing for him before he leaves.

The film Mamta explores the sacrifices Suchitra makes upon becoming a mother and like the thematically-similar blockbuster Aradhana (1969) demonstrates the resilience of a woman wronged by society. Majrooh Sultanpuri wrote the lyrics to Roshan’s superb compositions for Mamta that have kept the film’s legacy alive today. “Rahe Na Rahe Hum” continues to be a favorite with its playful chime opening and nectar-sweet vocals that betray the heartache of the scene.

Suchitra Sen in Mamta

Suchitra Sen tears the petals from a flower on the eve of her separation from Ashok Kumar (right) and tosses the torn petals into the pond (left). The imagery of Suchitra’s identification with a flower recurs throughout the song and film–note how even her saari is decorated with a floral pattern!

“Rahe Na Rahe Hum” captures an appreciation of transience, framed as a neglected yet wonderous consequence of continuity, and highlights the transcendence of attachment to worldly phenomena such as seasons, physical proximity, and even time itself.

The tender line “ashqo.N se bhiigii chandnii mei.N ek sadaa si sunoge chalte chalte” allows simultaneously for mourning and recovery. While Suchitra acknowledges he will miss her, those tears of sadness will not last through the end of his journey that both know he must continue without her. Like the flowers petals that fall away drifting into the pond, Suchitra’s presence is not fettered by a set manifestation. Ultimately “Rahe Na Rahe Hum” is far more than mere words of consolation—it is an ode to love that celebrates the permanence of memory.

Suchitra Sen in Mamta

Suchitra Sen sings “Rahe Na Rahe Hum” as a parting gesture to the man she loves in Mamta (1966).

We hope you enjoy the full lyrics and English translation to the beautiful “Rahe Na Rahe Hum” below. Note that the plural pronoun “hum” can be translated as either “we” or “I.” I’ve chosen the singular for poetic purposes, but you can see how this no-doubt deliberate subtlety on the part of Sultanpuri sahib may color the translation slightly differently with each read. Watch the original song here!

Rahe Na Rahe Hum Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi

Rahe na rahe hum mahakaa kareN.ge
Whether or not I am here, this fragrance will remain
Banke kali banke sabaa baagh-e-wafaa mei.N
As if a flower, as if a breeze in our devoted garden

Mausum koi ho, is chaman mei.N rang barse rahe.Nge hum khiraamaa
Whatever the weather may be in our garden, I will fill it gracefully with color
Chaahat ki khushbuu yuu.N hii zulfo.N se uDegii khizaa ho ya bahaare.N
The sweet fragrance of our love will still fly from my hair, whether Autumn or Spring
Yuu.N hii jhuumte aur khilte rahe.Nge
I will continue to sway and blossom
Banke kali banke sabaa baagh-e-wafaa mei.N
As if a flower, as if a breeze in our devoted garden
Rahe na rahe hum…
Whether or not I am here…

Khoye hum aise kyaa hai milnaa kyaa bichhaDnaa nahii.N hai yaad humko
I am so deeply lost in love that I no longer know separation from unity
Kooche mei.N dil ke jab se aaye sirf dil ki zameen hai yaad humko
Ever since you entered the lanes of my heart, I can only remember its world of love
Ise sarzameen pe hum to rahe.Nge
In that realm I will remain
Banke kali banke sabaa baagh-e-wafaa mei.N
As if a flower, as if a breeze in our devoted garden
Rahe na rahe hum…
Whether or not I am here…

Jab hum na ho.Nge, jab hamaare khaak pe tum rukoge chalte chalte
When I am gone, when you pause by my ashes as you walk
Ashqo.N se bhiigi chaandnii mei.N ek sadaa si sunoge chalte chalte
In the rainy moonlight that is wet from my tears, you will hear my call as you walk
Wohii pe kahii.N hum tum se mile.Nge
There somewhere, we both will meet again
Banke kali banke sabaa baagh-e-wafaa mei.N
As if a flower, as if a breeze in our devoted garden

Rahe na rahe hum mahakaa kareN.ge
Whether or not I am here, this fragrance will remain
Banke kali banke sabaa baagh-e-wafaa mei.N
As if a flower, as if a breeze in our devoted garden


mahaknaa: [a fragrance] to spread, kali: flower; sabaa: breeze; baagh: garden; wafaa: loyalty, devotedness; mausam: weather, atmosphere; chaman: garden; rang: color; khiraamaa: gracefully; chaahat: love, desire; khushbuu: sweet fragrance; zulf: hair; khizaa: Autumn; bahaar: Spring; jhuumnaa: to sway; khilnaa: to blossom; milnaa: to meet; bichhaDnaa: to separate; kooche: lane; zameen: world; yaad: memory; sarzameen: realm, society; khaak: ashes; ashq: tears; bhiigii: wet, rainy; chaandnii: moonlight, sadaa: call, voice

You may be interested to note that there is a duet version of this gem that is reprised at the end of the film by Mohammed Rafi and Suman Kalyanpur. Yes, it was the days of the famous Rafi-Mangeshkar feud–hence why the duets of the film necessitated recruiting additional singers (also from the same film, the flirtatious hit “In Baharo.N Mei.N Akeli” by Rafi and Asha as well as “Chhupa Lo Yuu.N Dil” featuring Lata and Hemant Kumar).

This song was requested by the one and only “lalten“! Let us know in the comments, does this song make you feel happy or bring tears to your eyes?

– Mrs. 55

23 thoughts on “Rahe Na Rahe Hum Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi

  1. This song as well as ALL songs of Mamta are beautiful, what i wud say to use a cliche SOUL STIRRING! Tufaan sa uthta hai seene mein! Even Rehte thhey kabhi jinke dil mein is a classic. The lyrics and music are unbeatable. Only thing i dont like about SuchitraSen movies is her heavy make up and her theatrical dialogue delivery Thanks! These film songs of 60s and 70s keep so many of us going!! Mohamed

    On Thu, Aug 22, 2013 at 4:55 AM, Mr. & Mrs. 55 – Classic Bollywood

    • It’s true–every song from this film is one of a kind and each so different! Although Suchitra Sen definitely followed the makeup and fashion trends of the era in this film, check out her performance in Bombayi Ka Babu (1960) or Aandhi (1975) where her acting alone is what shines! Glad you enjoyed the post and stay tuned for more Mamta translations coming soon!

  2. Good choice, this song always brings tears to the eyes even though it sounds very upbeat and happy it is full of meaning and deep beauty. Thanks for the wonderful translation!

  3. I love this song. Can you please explain why you mentioned the woman has been wronged by society? Thank you for the lyrics. It is a very poetic song!

    • Ah, for that you’ll have to see the film! Like most Bollywood plots of the era, it’s hard to summarize briefly–but a series of both unfortunate and unjust events dictated by social norms of the community lead her to giving up her child for adoption and turning to “dishonorable” means of earning a living. All the while, she’s only trying to do what is right for her daughter–and of course, Ashok Kumar comes back into the picture years later. It’s actually a pretty good film, made even better by the stellar music!

  4. Thanks so much for honoring my request and yes, rumors of my demise are greatly exaggerated 🙂 I was preoccupied with worldly matters but not enough to regularly keep up with my favorite blog of all time. You guys are unbelievable in terms of what you are doing to promote the appreciation of this most wonderful strain of popular music in our culture.

    I often watch “Abhi to main jawaan hoon” on TVAsia and it doesn’t hold a candle to your blog in terms of the sheer educational and entertainment content.

    Indeed, if there are any TVAsia executive reading this blog, I would encourage them to bring you guys into their fold.

    Regardless, keep it up..your loyal fan, who will continue to remain fragrant in the gardens of the world wide web as long as Mr. and Mrs. 55 are there!


  5. Pingback: Chhupa Lo Yun Dil Mein Lyrics and Translation: Let’s Learn Urdu-Hindi | Mr. & Mrs. 55 - Classic Bollywood Revisited!

  6. Thanks for the translation,I had been looking for the word ‘saba’,which was mentioned by some as sheeba the queen and morning by others.It was here that I got the correct meaning.

  7. this song I was searching for so many years. In my childhood days, i used to hear this song in the Ceylon Radio broadcasting. Though i do not know Hindi, I could understand the emotion that went into this song and makes one cry. Even now whenever I listen to this song I feel like crying. Now only I understood the full meaning on this translation. Thanks for the posting. That was a superb team work effort – excellent lyrics, sang well by lata and lilting and soullifting music by roshan.

  8. Even before I could partly could make the meaning of the Lyrics I am so delighted that I could see the meaning of the words now. The wordings are are so touching. It floods me with so much memories ,bringing tears to my eyes. Thank you, thank you.

  9. Thank you for this wonderful and informative translation. I was, for a long time, searching the meaning of word ‘Khiraamaa’ which finally I found here. Thanks.

  10. Great song, it hints the everlasting nature of love and soul in such a subtle way !! A fine blend of sorrow and serenity of deep aspirations.

  11. What a lovely song which would takes us back to 17th century to feel the love of Shajehan and Mumtaz Begum. Hearty congratulations to the lyricist, singers and special congratulations to Mr & Mrs.55 for their wonderful translation.

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