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Rafi sahab uniting the universe


Contributed by Aseer
Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Everyone nowadays and always are busy describing Rafi sahab as the greatest singer and if not that talking about his
greatness as a human being that he was. But another dimension thoroughly neglected has been his immense influence on
our lives. So this is one such true story of how Rafi sahab changed the star alignment of three families, merging their
destiny together.This story spans across 3 decades, 3 families and 3 religions. This stunning revelation came to me
when one of their family members contacted me. And little time I did take to take his story to the eyes of millions Rafi
devotees worldwide.
Once upon a time, around 35 years ago, there was a young man named as Ahmedbhai Shaikh from Surat, who used to
sing Rafi sahab's songs in orchestras in Gujarat. Off late, he went to Mumbai and started to sing with Rafi Sahab as a
chorus singer (once he was singing outside the recording room, and listening to his voice, Rafi sahab came out, the
young man was afraid, Rafisahab smiled and said "bahot achha gaate ho bhai..") and after that he maintained close
acquaintance with Rafi Sahab.. While, in Bombay, Ahmedbhai stayed for around 10 years and although he was not
having a close relation with Rafi Sahab but daily they exchanged smiles and Salaams.. and sometimes he would
ask.."Ahmed,kya haal hai?". Further, there was a Hindu girl, named Asha, again a fan of Rafi Sahab, who fell in love with
this man simply because he had something to do with Rafisahab... they got married...and had a daughter whom they
named Aashia .Who grew up with an unquestioning approval of Rafi sahab.. and she also sung everything Rafi sahab
had and had a great collection ranging from 1940s to 1980s.Further, At some another distant location in Ahmedabad,
Gujarat there stayed a Christian Gentleman named Mr. Paul Joseph who was a renowned violinist and an ardent fan of
Rafi sahab. He came across with Ahmedbhai and exchanged thoughts and views with the only subject music and Rafi
sahab...... The family relations developed and both the families had one thing in common, Rafi. Simply out of this zeal,
they decided to get united.But they had the common stigma in their mind and Mrs Asha Shaikh was diffident and
Ahmedbhai was also skeptical thinking Apoorv (son of Paul sahab) may decline this proposal. But somehow they along
with Mr. Paul Joseph approached Apoorv and he gracefully accepted the proposal. The local Muslim community,
including Maulvi sahab consented saying that we know Apoorvbhai for some years, and feel that he is the right person(a
Rafian can never be a bad choice, narrator’s observation) So actually they never had any social problems.The
fact is; as Apoorv says, my wife is a person to have a Brahmin Mother, Muslim Father and a Christian husband and to my
knowledge, exceptionally the only inter-religion ARRANGED marriage in the country and not a love marriage. And this
happened only due to Rafi sahab.Apoorv, a publicity hater, shyly admits last three years of our married life, our day starts
like... We get up in the morning and alternatively read Bible and Quran and after the breakfast, we switch on the L.G.
Karaoke System, which has 1800 tracks and start singing and Aasia willalways make a remark, "Kuchh bhi karlo, Bawa
(Ahmedbhai) jaisa nahi gaa paaoge" and I reply saying yes, because I sing like Rafi Sahab. We sing solos and duets for
over an hours time regularly and every other day, somebody from the neighborhood will come and comment " Hamko
lagaa ki Radio par puraane gaane aa rahe hai...phir bachchon ne bataaya ki Aap log gaa rahe hai.Now, Ahmedbhai,that
is,my father in law each year visits with me at the grave of Rafisahab and put some soil from the grave on his forehead...
even I try to imitate the same gesture with overwhelming respect and faith in it.As Apoorv gloomily admits, Right now, I
am in London, alone, with some force-friends...who understands only pounds & penny and have nothing to do with
Rafisahab or Ahmedbhai. But they get together every year to go to Rafi sahab’s mazaar and pay their homage.
They also organize one competition show for youngsters on every death anniversary of Rafi Sahab with Apoorv as one
of the three judges. Mr. Paul Joseph has passed away a few years ago.Apoorv continues, we are very ardent to learn
more and more about the Almighty, through Bible, through Quran, and of course through Rafi sahab. He has united this
three families and He was the cause for this strangest but loveliest also relationship.Now, I ask, who ever had this great
influence on any of his fan’s lives? Name any politician or sportsperson or for that matter singer or artist. Simply
you can’t. Because never did any person effected and meant so much even after he was not anymore there. And
sheer love for Rafi sahab made all these happen. This , my friends, is the magic of Rafi sahab. He not only sang myriad
evergreen songs but also had such an effect of presence in our conscience or mind or thinking that knowingly or
unknowingly we do what He asks us to do, we move to that path where he guides and unaware to everyone He is there
right in our subconscious which is more powerful than our conscious mind. I don’t need to write much coz no one
is going to read these words after this touching true account of three Rafi devotees. The story is self explanatory. This
can’t be explained rather must be felt. Rafi sahab lives eternally and will continue to dominate the minds of
millions of people this way only, dictating their lives. This story came to surface but many such stories might be cooking
somewhere hidden from our eyes.Love you, Rafi sahab. This article was penned with inputs from Mr. Apoorv, to whom I
express immense gratitude on behalf of all Rafians. Thank you for sharing this most unique Rafi-story.

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