Madan Mohan had composed the song based in Raag Lalit. Manna Dey’s rendition of the song “Qasame Vaade Pyar” from the film ‘Upkar’ (1967) picturised on Pran and composed by Kalyanji Anandji won accolades for Manna Dey. This song paved way for Pran to go for positive roles.
Manna Dey was very appreciative of the fact that actor Rajesh Khanna who always had preferred Kishore Kumar to sing his songs had given some songs to him (Manna Dey) also. Manna Dey always liked the way Rajesh Khanna picturised his songs or for that matter the songs sung by other singers also. Manna Dey, apart from already quoted songs, had rendered songs “Tum Bin Jeewan Kaisa Jeewan” and movie ‘Bawarchi’’s “Bhor Aaye Gaya Andhera” in 1972, “Nadiya Chale Re”, “Hasne Ki Chah Nei” in the movie ‘Avishkaar’ in 1973 and “Gori Tori Paijaniya” from the movie ‘Mehbooba’, (1976).
During the period from 1970 to1983, Manna Dey recorded a little over 500 songs in Bollywood. As the age caught him he became selective and chose to do less work in Mumbai and withdrew from 1992 onwards. He continued his singing spree in Bengali movies. He kept himself busy in singing bhajans and ghazals in different languages and appeared in live performances until 2012; his last live performance being in 2012 in Mumbai. His last recorded song in Hindi films was “Duniyawaalo Kee Nahee Kuchh Bhee Khabar” for the film ‘Umar’ in 2006 composed by Shamir Tandon. This song was sung with the tuneful singers Kavita Krishnamurthy and Sonu Nigam. He was presented the Filmfare Life Time Achievement Award in 2011.
On a personal front, Manna Dey married Sulochana Kumaran in December 1953. His wife hailed originally from Kerala. The couple was blessed with two daughters; Shuroma (born in 1956) and Sumita (born in 1958). Sulochana died in Bengalore in January 2012 from cancer. After her death, Manna Dey moved to Kalyan Nagar in Bengalore after spending more than 50 years in Mumbai. It is a pity that despite singing thousands of songs in all the regional languages of India, Manna Dey could not become a household name as much as his peers, Talat Mahmud, Mukesh, Muhammad Rafi and Kishore Kumar! *
For six years the bills were paid, the grass was cut and no one noticed the body of the dead woman ...