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AR Rahman on Vaishnav Jan To: The song has a hidden message

The Oscar-winning music director, who has rearranged the devotional song for Gandhi Godse Ek Yudh, has something to reveal about the song

AR Rahman on Vaishnav Jan To: The song has a hidden message
A R Rahman
  • Arundhuti Banerjee

Last Updated: 03.15 PM, Jan 25, 2023

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The song Vaishnav Jan To from the upcoming film Gandhi Godse Ek Yudh released on Wednesday. And celebrated music director AR Rahman, who rearranged the song for the film, has now revealed how he treated the song without compromising the traditional bhajan's originality.

Rahman said, "Sometimes, you have to be true to the original song, because it is for a film that is a reimagination of history. So, reimagining the song might just take away the orientation of the song. It is also one of my favourite compositions because, in addition to the surface message, it contains a hidden message. Some mystics say that God is hidden in compassion and kindness. God is hidden in all of these things, but we mistook him for someone else. This is a spiritual secret, and I feel like it will take us years to understand. This song has that in it, both in the tune and the meaning. Also, I feel like this movie deserves such a song, and I felt like I did not have to do anything to change it."

The lyrics of Vaishnav Jan To were written in Gujarati by Narsinh Mehta. It was popularised by freedom fighters and Mahatma Gandhi, who used to sing it at his Sabarmati Ashram. The song has been rearranged by Rahman and sung by Shreya Ghoshal for Gandhi Godse Ek Yudh.

The story of Gandhi Godse Ek Yudh revolves around the ideological differences between Mahatma Gandhi and Nathuram Godse, a Hindu nationalist with a dream of a Hindu Rashtra, who killed Gandhi on January 30, 1948. Eventually, he was put on trial and received capital punishment. 

Directed by Rajkumar Santoshi, the film stars Chinmay Mandlekar, Deepak Antani, Tanisha Santoshi, Pawan Chopra and Arif Zakaria. It releases on January 26.