indian cinema heritage foundation

Koel (1944)

  • Release Date24/11/1944
  • FormatB-W
  • LanguagePunjabi
  • Length3348.22 meters
  • Number of Reels13 reels
  • Gauge35 mm
  • Censor RatingU
  • Censor Certificate NumberU-593/53 - Mumbai
  • Certificate Date29/12/1953

A beautiful damsel Taro (Manorama) of Dharampur village would sing melodiously as soon as she heard the mellifluous call of a cuckoo, thereby earning her the nickname Cuckoo. The sweet girl becomes the song-bird of the entire village as she regales them with her melodious singing. Taro's brother, Sohna (Majnu) had gone to Lahore in search of a job. Taro was living alone in the village waiting for her brother's letters. One day, she went to the post office to enquire about his brother's letter. On reaching there, she meets the new postmaster Pran (Satish Chhabra), who has a handsome and pleasing personality. This encounter is the beginning of a romance between the two. Their affair, however, is not tolerated by the villagers, especially by Raisaheb Balwant Roy, the young village Zamindar (Saleem Raza), and his agent 'Chuni' who become jealous of Taro and Pran. Rai Saheb, who has evil designs for Taro leaves no stone unturned to harm the lovers. Taro defies all his traps and remains loyal to Pran whom she loves with all her heart.

One day when Taro was freeing the cuckoo from its cage the news of Pran’s transfer to Lahore came as a bolt from the blue to her. Pran tries to console her by saying he won’t forget her and in Lahore, he will also discuss their marriage with her brother Sohna. Sohna, however, is a petty criminal earning his living by fooling unsuspecting citizens of Lahore.

Pran’s luck takes a turn once he arrives in Lahore, he wins a lottery and instantly becomes a millionaire. This sudden turn of events makes him forget about Taro, who on the other hand is getting impatient to reunite with him because the villagers are now eager to take advantage of her. Unable to cope with this separation she packs her bags and leaves for Lahore to find Pran, just when Pran also decides to go to the village to get her back.