Zeenat Begum (not to be confused with actress Zeenat) was a kothewali (courtesan). Her first recorded songs mostly composed by Pandit Amarnath and mostly sung in Punjabi language for HMV and Jienophone appeared around 1937.
Her first success as a playback singer came in 1942 when she sang for Pt. Govind Ram for Punjabi film Mangti. Most of the songs from this film were superhits and the film itself went on to become first Golden Jubilee film produced in Lahore. She remained a particular favorite of Pandit Amarnath (elder brother of famous music directors Husnlal Bhagatram) who used her voice in many films including Panchhi (1944), Shalimar (1946), Shehar se Door (1946) and Daasi (1944). She also sang for Husnlal Bhagatram for their debut film Chand (1944).
With the arrival of new playback singers in Pakistan after partition, Zeenat Begum’s playback singing career got eclipsed. However, she remained a prominent artist of Radio Lahore until the late 50s. She died on 12 November 1966 – Ummer Siddique
(Information provided by Urzung Khan)
Kya yehi jawani hai – Singer – Zeenat Begum, Music – Husnlal Bhagatram, Film – Chand, Year –1944