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Aradhana - 1969

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Aradhana, released in 1969, is a timeless masterpiece of Indian cinema that captivated audiences with its touching storyline, soulful music, and unforgettable performances. Directed by Shakti Samanta, this iconic Bollywood film swept across the nation, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of millions.

Set against the backdrop of a beautiful hill station, Aradhana weaves a tale of love, sacrifice, and redemption. The narrative unfolds with the introduction of Vandana, portrayed by the dazzling Sharmila Tagore. Her graceful beauty and charisma effortlessly draw viewers into her world, where she is entangled in a web of circumstances.

Aradhana takes an unexpected turn when Vandana becomes pregnant out of wedlock. Forced to give up her child, she faces immense hardships and societal scorn. However, her undying love for her child becomes the driving force behind her actions as she navigates through a labyrinth of emotions and struggles.

Rajesh Khanna, who rose to unparalleled stardom with his portrayal of the charming and charismatic Suraj, delivers a power-packed performance that resonates even today. His character's journey intertwines with Vandana's, as love and destiny bring them together in unforeseen ways.

Aradhana stands as a testament to the artistic brilliance and cultural significance of Indian cinema. With its compelling storyline, mesmerising performances, and soul-stirring music, this cinematic gem continues to captivate audiences, reaffirming its status as a true Bollywood classic.


Table of Contents


Movie Name


Directed by

Shakti Samanta

Screenplay by

Sachin Bhowmick

Produced by

Shakti Samanta


Sharmila Tagore, Rajesh Khanna, Sujit Kumar, Farida Jalal, Abhi Bhattacharya, and Ashok Kumar


Alok Dasgupta

Edited by

Sahil Budhiraja

Music by

S. D. Burman, R.D. Burman, and Anand Bakshi

Production Company

Shakti Films

Distributed by

Shakti Films

Release Date

7 November 1969


2 Hours 49 Minutes






₹80 Lakh


Arun Varma, a member of the Indian Air Force, sings "Mere Sapno Ki Rani" with his co-pilot Madan while riding in an open jeep in Darjeeling, West Bengal. Vandana, the daughter of a doctor named Gopal Tripathi, secretly looks at him from a little train. 

After a brief relationship, they got married in a temple without ceremony and with only God present to witness it. Then it starts to rain, so they are forced to stay at a motel and share a bed. Vandana gets pregnant at this point.

Arun dies in an aeroplane crash shortly after that. Since Vandana's marriage to Arun was never legally recognised, his family would not accept her as a member. Her father passes away in the meantime, leaving her helpless. 

When Vandana's son is at last born, she puts him up for adoption so that she can officially adopt him the next day, but she feels bound to let a childless couple adopt him. She accepts the position of nanny for him because she is determined to be a part of his life. Suraj is the name of the child. 

Lusting for Vandana, Shyam, her employer's brother-in-law, tries to rape her while no one is present, but Suraj shows up and stabs him to death to protect Vandana. When the police arrive, Suraj escapes and grows up forgetting this accident, but Vandana accepts responsibility for the crime and is imprisoned.

When Vandana is released from prison a few years later, the jailer befriends her and invites her to his house to meet his daughter, Renu. When Vandana learns that Renu is dating Suraj, who resembles his father exactly, they meet. Suraj is an air force officer like his father had desired. Slowly, he begins to recall that he had previously met Vandana. 

However, Vandana is hiding the truth because she fears that Suraj will feel ashamed if he learns about his parents' past. At the jailer's house, Vandana settles in.

Like his father Arun, Suraj suffers an accident in an aeroplane crash but survives. Vandana meets Madan as Suraj is receiving treatment in the hospital; Madan is aware that Suraj is Arun and Vandana's son. He wants to be honest with Suraj, but Vandana, out of concern for what might happen, does not want Suraj to know that he is her son. 

Later, when Vandana is not around, Suraj finds Arun's picture in her diary. He embraces Vandana's selfless approach and formally recognises her as his mother after realising that Arun and Vandana are his true parents.


The movie was released on November 7, 1969. In 1969, the Indian film industry witnessed the release of a cinematic masterpiece that would go on to redefine the standards of storytelling and music in Bollywood. Directed by Shakti Samanta, Aradhana emerged as a monumental achievement, captivating audiences across the nation and leaving an everlasting impact on Indian cinema.

Aradhana arrived at a time when the industry was experiencing a creative revolution, exploring new narratives and pushing boundaries. The film's release was met with immense anticipation and excitement as audiences eagerly awaited the magic that awaited them on the silver screen.

Led by a stellar cast, Aradhana boasted the talents of two iconic actors who would later be recognised as legends of Indian cinema. Sharmila Tagore's portrayal of Vandana, a character torn between love and sacrifice, showcased her remarkable acting prowess and established her as a force to be reckoned with. Opposite her, Rajesh Khanna delivered a career-defining performance as Suraj, a charismatic and passionate character that captured the hearts of millions.


Aradhana-Reviews-Image.tring.jpgAradhana, a 1969 Bollywood film directed by Shakti Samanta, is an exceptional piece of cinematic brilliance that deserves every accolade it has received. This heartfelt drama weaves a tale of love, sacrifice, and redemption, leaving a lasting impact on the viewer.

The film's strength lies in its captivating storytelling. The narrative unfolds with precision, engaging the audience from the very beginning. It delves into the complexities of human emotions, exploring themes of love, loss, and societal expectations. The script is beautifully crafted, allowing the characters to evolve organically and drawing the audience into their world.

The performances in Aradhana are nothing short of outstanding. Sharmila Tagore delivers a breathtaking portrayal of Vandana, a woman caught in the midst of societal judgement and personal turmoil. Her nuanced performance captures the character's vulnerability and strength, making Vandana a relatable and memorable figure. Rajesh Khanna, in one of his career-defining roles, exudes charm and charisma as Suraj, leaving a lasting impression with his flawless acting.

The film's music is an absolute treat for the senses. Composers Sachin Dev Burman and lyricist Anand Bakshi have crafted a soundtrack that is soulful and timeless. Songs like "Mere Sapno Ki Rani" and "Roop Tera Mastana" continue to resonate with audiences, enhancing the emotional impact of the story.

Aradhana is a visual delight as well. The picturesque hill station setting and the stunning cinematography transport the viewers into a world of beauty and romance. The attention to detail in the costumes and production design adds an extra layer of authenticity to the storytelling.

Overall, Aradhana is a masterpiece that has stood the test of time. Its compelling narrative, stellar performances, melodic music, and breathtaking visuals make it a must-watch for any cinema lover. This film showcases the true essence of Bollywood cinema and leaves an unbreakable mark on the hearts of those who experience its magic.



Character Analysis







Mere Sapno Ki Rani

Kishore Kumar


Kora Kagaz Tha Yeh Man Mera

Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar


Gun Guna Rahe Hai Bhanvare

Mohammed Rafi and Asha Bhosle


Roop Tera Mastana

Kishore Kumar


Saphal Hogi Teri Aradhana

S. D. Burman


Chanda Hai Tu Mera Suraj Hai Tu

Lata Mangeshkar


Baghon Mein Bahar Hai

Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammed Rafi

Behind the Scenes

Sachin Bhowmick wrote the screenplay for the movie. The movie's theme was inspired by the 1946 movie To Each His Own.

Producer Surinder Kapoor showed Samanta his most recent movie, Ek Shrimaan Ek Shrimati, which starred Shashi Kapoor and was also written by Sachin Bhowmick, a day before Aradhana's filming began.

He was shocked to see that this movie's ending was the same as his own. When authors Gulshan Nanda and Madhusudan Kalelkar visited Samanta's office the following day, Samanta made the decision to stop the production of his movie. Gulshan Nanda made the suggestion to include a dual part of father and son in the movie after learning about the problem. Originally, the first hero was supposed to pass away by the interval and be replaced by a new hero.

While Aradhana was being postponed that evening, Nanda read a passage from Kati Patang to Samanta, which the he enjoyed right away. Over the course of the next several hours, they revised the second part of Aradhana before talking about Kati Patang.

A single take was used to record the "Roop Tera Mastana" song sequence, which lasted for more than 3 minutes and 30 seconds.

Box Office Collection

Worldwide revenue for Aradhana was anticipated at ₹178.5 million (or $23.62 million). This is comparable, after accounting for inflation, to ₹11.37 billion in 2017 or ₹13.55 billion (US$170 million) in 2020.

It sold 42 million tickets in India and 47.4 million in the Soviet Union, for a total of 89.4 million tickets sold globally, according to estimates of box office attendance.



Date of ceremony




17th Filmfare Awards


Best Film

Shakti Samanta


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Actress

Sharmila Tagore


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Male Playback Singer

Kishore Kumar (Roop Tera Mastana)


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Director

Shakti Samanta


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Actor

Rajesh Khanna


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Supporting Actress

Farida Jalal


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Music Director

S. D. Burman


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Lyricist

Anand Bakshi (Mere Sapno Ki Rani)


17th Filmfare Awards


Best Story

Sachin Bhowmick


Interesting Facts


Aradhana remains an extraordinary cinematic achievement that leaves a permanent mark on its viewers. Its compelling narrative, stellar performances, captivating music, and exquisite visuals come together to create an unforgettable journey. This film continues to inspire and resonate, reminding us of the enduring power of love, sacrifice, and the magic of Bollywood cinema.


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