Nazia’s ‘Disco Deewane’ in KJo’s Student of the Year

Published: September 6, 2012

Rediscovering the hit song from the 80s is a treat for Nazia’s fans all over the world. PHOTO: FILE

Rediscovering the hit song from the 80s is a treat for Nazia’s fans all over the world. PHOTO: FILE
Rediscovering the hit song from the 80s is a treat for Nazia’s fans all over the world. PHOTO: FILE
Rediscovering the hit song from the 80s is a treat for Nazia’s fans all over the world. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: “You know it, so sing it! And throw your hands up and say…Disco Deewane!! Aha!!!” tweeted Karan Johar when the revamped version of Nazia Hassan’s classic song “Disco Deewane” was released. This is a proud moment for Nazia’s admirers all over the world as the widely popular song is to feature in the upcoming film Student of the Year (SOTY). Directed by Karan Johar, the film is indeed a great way to carry her legacy forward today.

Nazia and Zohaib Hassan, along with the legendary Alamgir, have long been considered the founders of pop music in Pakistan. Back in the day, they delivered countless hits that made them household names among desis all over the world — be it Karachi, Mumbai or London.

Nazia’s ties with Bollywood go back to the 80s, when she was just 15 and sang the timeless number “Aap Jaisa Koi” for the film Qurbani and went on to win the Filmfare Award for best female playback singer. This accolade not only made her the first Pakistani to win at Filmfare, but also the youngest recipient of the award!

The original version of “Disco Deewane” was released in 1981 and, as reported by Emirates 24/7, “It charted in 14 countries worldwide and became the best-selling Asian pop record. It changed trends in music across South Asia, where it broke sales records, for instance by selling 100,000 records within a day of its release in Mumbai alone.”

The new version of the song has been revamped by Vishal Shekhar and sung by Sunidhi Chauhan, while some portions of Nazia’s original version have also been retained. The song features the lead cast of the film including Siddharth Malhotra, Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan. Alia is director Mahesh Bhatt’s daughter, while Varun is the son of director David Dhawan. The upcoming film also stars Boman Irani’s son, Kayoze Irani.

Shresht Poddar, of Score Magazine, gave the music album of Student of the Year 3.5 out of five stars saying, “It seems to be exactly what Karan Johar wants us to believe it is — his holiday film with a holiday-worthy score. Fantastic orchestration, hummable melodies & quirky lyrics (for the most part) dominate this album — yet something seems to be amiss.”

The film is scheduled for a mid-October release. Based on reviews the trailer has received, it seems that people have mixed expectations. Some believe that the film looks like a pretentious take on college life, while others think that this is what Karan Johar is best at — creating a fantasy world and inviting you into it.

His formula worked wonders in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, which was based on a college love story back in the late 90s. Student of the Year could possibly be a more contemporary take on the same plot. But the film’s success can only be gauged once it is released. For now, “Disco Deewane” is enough to keep us interested.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 7th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (33)

  • Nav
    Sep 6, 2012 - 7:58PM

    Well, i hope they at least acknowledge the original…


  • bharat
    Sep 6, 2012 - 8:20PM


    That they willl never do.

    They simply call everything copied as inspired.

    Most of the producers are too busy taking advantage of young, pretty girls.

    They have no time or inclination to make a meaningful movie.

    Most films are a means to convert black money to white.

    They are not filmmakers in true sense and never will be


  • Awans
    Sep 6, 2012 - 9:33PM

    Indians are master plagiarists. Do you expect they will give any credit to Nazia Hassan??. In my view it is an Another theft and nothing else. I am sure they will promote this song as an Indian Song in the west and in the world and they will never give credit to Nazia Hassan as we have already seen the fate of many Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan songs.
    I am pretty sure When this Song will be Uploaded on Youtube and will be Promoted original Singer will never be given any Credit as History tells us otherwise and many Pakistani Singers are robbed in the past and this will be the same story.


  • Awans
    Sep 6, 2012 - 10:02PM

    My Indian friend just shared the Disco song right now on facebook and the wordings are ” Composed by Indians and revamped by Indians. We Indians rock.” and he got five likes from Western friends and a round of applause. I dont want to heat up the debate by commenting there as he omitted Nazia Hassan’s name but that is how things work here.This is how Songs are exploited basically and how master twisters twist the words to get the whole credit and that is how story goes basically.


  • Vikas
    Sep 6, 2012 - 10:31PM

    Pakistanis shamefully consider themselves as desis. Desi is a hindi word. Please find some urdu word for the same and associate yourselves with that.


  • bollywood
    Sep 6, 2012 - 10:48PM


    We like the fact that You know so much about Bollywood.


  • karma
    Sep 6, 2012 - 10:54PM

    Nav: The song is credited to Nazia Hasan, along with the new singers. Just saw the CD cover.


    Sep 7, 2012 - 12:44AM


    Stop calling your dead ones Shaheed. Find a Hindi word for that.


  • Kamal
    Sep 7, 2012 - 6:37AM


    Desi comes from Des which is an Urdu word. The Hindi version is Desh. Go figure that!


  • Gratgy
    Sep 7, 2012 - 8:42AM


    Urdu originated in Uttar Pradesh, India. As per Wikipedia, “Based on the Khariboli dialect of Delhi, Urdu developed under the influence of Persian, Arabic, and Turkic over the course of almost 900 years. It began to take shape in what is now Uttar Pradesh, India during the Delhi Sultanate”

    Urdu is one of India 22 official languages, though Hindi is the official primary language and English is secondary official language.. Most signboards in Delhi are in three languages, English, Hindi and Urdu


  • Pakboy
    Sep 7, 2012 - 9:07AM

    Indians shamelessly copy and plagiarize Pakistani music. A simple search on youtube shows the true face of these cheaters


  • Haider
    Sep 7, 2012 - 11:06AM

    Original is always original..aha


  • gp65
    Sep 7, 2012 - 12:01PM

    @Pakboy: “Indians shamelessly copy and plagiarize Pakistani music. A simple search on youtube shows the true face of these cheaters”

    Will not deny that Indian music directors plagiarize. IT is stupid to deny facts. What you may not be aware however is plagiarism is common in the subcontinent. Many of your patriotic songs of late 1940s are a directly lifted from the Indian movie Jagruti which was released in 1943.

    In any event Disco Deewane may have been sung by a Pakistani but the music was composed by Biddu who was a London based Indian. Nazia’s first hit was also in a Bollywood movie and also composed by Biddu. Nothing can take away from Nazia’s talent but Bollywood should get credit for recognizing that talent and giving it opportunity.

    On a separate note, a rather funny incident I remember when the song Aap jaisa koi became a super hit and all my school friends just loved it. However one of my Parsi friends was absolutely scandalized by that song and I could not figure out why. The mystery was solved when I figured out that she thought it was baap instead of baat,


  • gp65
    Sep 7, 2012 - 12:05PM

    @AFGHAN: “@Vikas,
    Stop calling your dead ones Shaheed. Find a Hindi word for that.”
    India has never disowned the Muslim influence on its culture and Urdu is one of India’s official languages. So no reason we should change.

    @kamal “@Vikas
    Desi comes from Des which is an Urdu word. The Hindi version is Desh. Go figure that!

    Wrong buddy des and desh b oth have Sanskrit origin not Persian. The urdu word is mulk.


  • goose
    Sep 7, 2012 - 1:27PM

    The song was compoased by an Indian Biddu. Nazia sang one version – now the same melody is being used to create another version sung by another singer, not Nazia – how does she qualify for credit????? She was a performing artist in the song, that’s it. How the industry works and most people know this is, the singer does not have copyright over the song – whoever owns the ‘mechanical rights’ to a song does (look up Google for reference)

    so before you go ranting about how unfair Indians are, please look up the rules – a different set will probably not be created for Pakistanis – then you proclaim that you don’t have a victim mentality.


  • Indian
    Sep 7, 2012 - 1:50PM

    I will not deny that there are many Bollywood Songs which have been inspired by foreign music; but having said that credit must go to Indian musicians and singers to revamp the original song in their own way.


    Famous Pakistani Song by Adnan Sami:- Zara holki Bajao Goriyo

    Copied by Indians in Bollywood Style:-


  • usman
    Sep 7, 2012 - 2:28PM

    For the first time i am seeing love for the urdu from the indian side that they are owning it,I appreciate it :)


  • Logistics
    Sep 7, 2012 - 2:38PM

    This song is stolen.


  • usman
    Sep 7, 2012 - 2:47PM

    For the first time i am seeing love for the urdu from the indian side that they are owning it,I appreciate it :)Recommend

  • Sidewinder
    Sep 7, 2012 - 2:49PM

    Desi comes from Des which is an Urdu word. The Hindi version is Desh. Go figure that!
    so you made a des out of a desh… that’s plagiarism….


  • roma
    Sep 7, 2012 - 3:49PM

    ive said it before and i’ll say it again – pakistani and indian women plus saudi arabian are the most beautiful in the whole world – evidence ? just look at nazia aboveRecommend

  • Dr Dang
    Sep 7, 2012 - 4:09PM

    The song Disco Deewane was written by Nazia & Zoheb Hassan and Anwar Khalid, and became the title song for the album.India composer & music producer Biddu went to his studio and composed the music for the whole song in one night.The next day Nazia and Zoheb arrived at the studio and recorded the song. The song became a super hit..
    Remember the singer sings songs composed by music director& composer who happens to be an Indian.. so that album or song is not all pakistani.


  • Sep 7, 2012 - 5:50PM

    Urdu grew out of persian and sanskrit/khadibolli…it is intrinsically an INDIAN language. So trying to emphasize the difference between des and desh is simply splitting hairs.
    Why not use the equivalent word in say seraiki or pashtu to describe who you are….


  • gp65
    Sep 7, 2012 - 9:46PM

    @usman: “For the first time i am seeing love for the urdu from the indian side that they are owning it,I appreciate it :)

    IT maybe the first time you re seeing it. IT is certainly not the first time it is expressed. Even within Bollywood which is pop culture, some of the most successful lyricists wrote in Urdu/Hindustani e.g. Sahir Ludhianvi, HAsrat Jaipuri, Javed Akhtar.

    Urdu is one of India’s 22 official languages and there has never been a move to take that status away from Urdu.


  • rahul
    Sep 8, 2012 - 3:49PM

    @gp65 The fact remains that Indians are far ahead in terms of music , if there is no music there is no point of voice/vocals. But Pakistani’s will never admit that its Indians big heart in getting these singers , polishing them and giving them big platform.We(Indian’s) have lot of things to be proud off, including giving chances to singers across the border and helping them financially.But its so unfortunate that these people get love , money from our people and then do bad mouth about us. This the reason why they are still struggling and can’t do anything on their own after 65 years.Recommend

  • Sep 8, 2012 - 4:57PM

    and No one has mentioned yet that Nazia hassan is actually given credit for the new revamped track. Even, her voice is included in the chorus part along with new singers. We, Indians & Pakistanis, just need a topic to start fighting on.


  • Farrukh Hanif AWan
    Sep 8, 2012 - 5:37PM

    No one can deny Nazia Hassan’s work and her style but please stop raving over who sang what and when. She sang it that doesn’t mean she owns the song. It is copyrighted and can be leased or worked upon by others if the parties deem or allow it. It is plagarism if it is done without buying copyrights or leasing the song from the original owners. In this case I think it is Biddu who holds the catalogue for disco Deewane.
    The problem with all DESI’s and FRICK i am going to write it desi no matter where the word originated.
    On this blog, writing in english and fighting over who and what did what. Come on. This is a new low!
    Nazia hassan was more famous for her being a liberated woman who managed to hold a dictator off her back and still managing to come on Pakistani Tv. The only reason was that Zia could not bear the sight of any pakistani going to india so he allowed her and he could not do anything about it because she was DAMN famous. So indian or not. Copyrights have been brought by whoever is making the crap movie because one thing i know, they have the money to do so. Our 60′s & 70′s are full of copying but hey we call them classics now. So live with it


  • Someone
    Sep 8, 2012 - 5:43PM

    @Gratgy & gp65: Yes, and what a great way to own Urdu. Since 1947, Urdu has been on the decline in India and relegated as just some Muslim language. There is lack of funding, decline literacy and Urdu culture at the same time is also becoming dead, not to mention the dominance of Hindi. Today I have many Indian Muslim friends who call themselves so-called “Urdu speakers” yet are zero/blank when it comes to writing or reading the language.

    It’s not a stretch when you see many Indian linguists admitting that Urdu is almost a dead language in India in the future.


  • Someone
    Sep 8, 2012 - 5:49PM

    @gp65: India has never disowned the Muslim influence on its culture And yet Indians disown Muhammad bin Qasim? The irony, she burns :p


  • akash
    Sep 8, 2012 - 6:07PM

    More than Urdu, Sanskrit has declined in India…& sadly..all Hindu scripture are in Sanskrit.


  • akash
    Sep 8, 2012 - 6:16PM

    If someday i have the power in my hands,i will make Sanskrit one of the main subject in School in India.
    I will ask every student to learn every verse of Vedas.
    I will make Chanakya/Chandragupta Maurya the role model of every students.
    I will make Yoga & meditation compulsory.


  • kamal
    Sep 10, 2012 - 12:54AM

    Urdu was and is the language of Muslim India, which makes Pakistan the rightful inheritor of it. Indians should stop being hypocritical.


  • Ryan
    Sep 10, 2012 - 2:32PM

    These Indians and Pakistanis just want any topic to fight on, we will never be at peace if we keep fighting on trivial things, let Nazia Hassan soul rest in peace at least.


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