Legendary Radio Broadcaster Ameen Sayani Passes Away At 91!

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Credits: Google

India has lost the true legend of the airwaves — Ameen Sayani — the iconic radio broadcaster who revolutionised the art of radio presentation. Sayani, the iconic radio presenter of the popular show “Binaca Geetmala’, died on Tuesday of a heart attack. He was 91. His voice, synonymous with the golden era of radio, and the timeless ‘Geetmala’, will forever echo in the hearts of crores of people. For 42 years since 1952, Sayani hosted ‘Binaca Geetmala’, a programme of hits over the airwaves of Radio Ceylon, and he addressed the listeners in his unique style as “Behno aur bhaiyo”.


His style of addressing the crowd with “Behno aur Bhaiyo” (sisters and brothers) as against the traditional “Bhaiyo aur Behno” is still treated as an announcement with a melodious touch. He had produced, compered and spoken for over 54,000 radio programmes and 19,000 spots and jingles since 1951.

 The news of his demise was confirmed by his son Rajil Sayani, who stated that Ameen Sayani breathed his last at a hospital last night. The cause of his demise has been attributed to heart failure.

Condolences are pouring in on social media as the news of the legendary presenter broke out.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his sadness and extended his condolences. He wrote that Ameen Sayani Ji’s golden voice on the airwaves had a charm and warmth that endeared him to people across generations.

“Through his work, he played an important role in revolutionising Indian broadcasting and nurtured a very special bond with his listeners. Saddened by his passing away. Condolences to his family, admirers and all radio lovers. May his soul rest in peace,” he wrote in his post on X. 

Union Home Minister Amit Shah, too, condoled the demise of Sayani. “Pained to know that Shri Ameen Sayani Ji the voice of the radio is no more. Sayani Ji leaves a void behind that will be difficult to fill. His golden legacy makes him immortal. My sincerest condolences to his near and dear ones and millions of admirers. Om Shanti.,” he wrote in his post on X.


Born in 1932, Sayani assisted his mother, Kulsum Sayani, in editing, publishing and printing a fortnightly journal for neo-literates, under the instructions of Mahatma Gandhi. It was this grounding in simple communication that helped him in his long career in commercial broadcasting and culminated in his being awarded the “Hindi Ratna Puraskaar” by the prestigious Hindi Bhavan of New Delhi in 2007.

He was introduced to All India Radio, Bombay, by his brother Hamid Sayani. Ameen participated in English programmes there for ten years.

Some of the better-known radio shows produced and compered by Ameen Sayani include ‘Cibaca (formerly Binaca) Geetmala’, ‘S Kumars Ka Filmi Mukaddama’, ‘Filmi Mulaqaat’, ‘Saridon Ke Sathi’, ‘Bournvita Quiz Contest’, ‘Shalimar Superlac Zodi’ and ‘Sangeet Key Sitaron KI Mehfil’.


Sayani has pioneered the export of Indian radio shows and commercials since 1976. He has exported to the US, Canada, England, UAE, Swaziland, Mauritius, South Africa, Fiji and New Zealand. In addition, he had compered several shows directly for radio stations abroad.

He had compered more than 2,000 stage functions of all sorts in India, including musical variety shows, beauty contests, fashion shows, award functions, film silver jubilee functions, an International Film Festival closing session (in Delhi), concerts, seminars, workshops, and trade presentations. He had also compered stage shows abroad.


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