In fact this countdown show was considered one of the most popular ones amongst the listeners. In several surveys of Binaca Geetmala, it has been quoted as being the most popular radio program in India during its run. After satellite television took over, Binaca Geetmala was succeeded by its subsequent incarnations called the Cibaca Sangeetmala, Cibaca Geetmala, and Colgate Cibaca Sangeetmala on Vividh Bharati from 1952 to 1994.
Selection of Songs for Binaca Geetmala
As Binaca Geetmala started in 1952, the program did not rank songs, but played seven contemporary songs in no such particular order. Later, the program started to rank the most popular Hindi film songs, strictly according to its listenership. Initially, the list was compiled on the basis of a combination of sales of records in India and listener votes to Radio Ceylon. The popularity of each song was gauged on the basis of record sales, record storeowners verdicts and that of the "shrota-sanghs"(Hindi songs listeners clubs). These "shrota-sanghs" functioned as the authentic club who would send in the popular songs every week. These clubs were formed for the benefit of Indian Radio Stations, because it often happened that a record could sell out of stores quickly and the store would run out of those records. The radio authorities could not thus arrange for the popular songs out of record, which later these shrota-sanghs provided.
The year-end lists of Binaca Geet Mala were compiled based on points earned by songs through the year, sometimes between 1966 and 1970. There were no points on the weekly shows broadcast, but the year-end shows were based on point system. Binaca Geetmala's first countdown show's topper in 1954 was Talat Mahmood's 'Jayen to Jayen Kahan' from the film Taxi Driver.
Popularity of Binaca Geetmala
Ameen Sayani hosted Binaca Geetmala, during its entire run with estimated listenership ranging from 900,000 to 2,000,000. The show particularly increased the popularity of Radio Ceylon, making it the principal source of popular film music on radio for the Indian subcontinent. Binaca Geetmala was later aired on Vividh Bharatiafter 1988, and was aired for almost 30 minutes on Monday night.
List of Top Songs Played in Binaca Geetmala
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