Mumal is a Rajasthani folk song that talks about the historic love story of Mumal and Mahendra. A few months back, on the occasion of Valentine’s Day, Drishyam Play uploaded a video of the song that has garnered 1 Million views already. The song has been presented in the form of a modern rendition blended with the folk style of Rajasthani folk music.
Mumal song features Dapu Khan, the popular folk singer of Jaisalmer, who has been performing at the Sonar Quila of Jaisalmer for more than 25 years. He has also been honored by the government for his effort of preserving the art. Singer Vibha Saraf has also lent her melodious voice for the song.
The music has been curated by Santosh Jagdale and Mukta Bhatt has tweaked the lyrics that connect to the masses. Re-created with a mix of modern music with Dapu Khan’s Kamaicha tune, the song will let you revisit the historic tale of Mumal and Mahendra. You may not understand the vernacular completely but you will surely be mesmerized with the soulful rendition.
Here is the Rajasthani folk song Mumal featuring Dapu Khan with his Kamaicha that has garnered 1 Million likes on YouTube:
This song has been re-conceptualized and re-created by Drishyam Play, a music studio that aims to promote non-mainstream genres and also to provide a platform to the budding singers, lyricists, and composers. The folk song is a very old creation depicting the love, sacrifice, and courage of a couple cited as an example of true lovers.
Mumal was a beautiful girl who lived in a Medhi (small palace) at Lodhurva, Jaisalmer. She was famous for her unmatchable beauty and it’s said that there was no one else like her. She used to live in a small Medhi which is now known as Kak Mahal by the side of Kak River. However, only a part of the broken wall of the monument is left on the site now.
Once Rana Mahendra Sodha, the ruler of Amarkot (now Umerkot) reached near the river while hunting with his brother-in-law Hameer. Struggling for a prey, as the two men halted near the river, they saw a magnificent palace across the river. With the desire to take rest near the gardens, they crossed the river and stopped by the palace.
Mumal, the beautifully mystifying Rajput girl looked at the two men from her balcony and ordered her maid to give food to the tired men. As they saw the food and refreshments, they enquired and got to know that Mumal had sent it.
Upon knowing that Mumal was the most beautiful girl on that land, they both wished to meet her. However, Mahendra hesitated and sent Hameer first. As Hameer reached near the palace he saw a tiger and a snake on the way and he returned to Mahendra.
Now it was Mahendra’s turn to enter the palace and as he was quite brave and witty, he easily decoded that the lion and snake were fake. At some distance, he again found a surface filled with water but he kept moving on and it turned out that it was just glass.
Mahendra entered the palace, met Mumal and the two instantly fell in love with each other. Now Mahendra wished to meet her every night for which he arranged a camel named Cheetal which could travel very fast. As the two lovebirds kept meeting every night, Mahendra’s family got to know the truth and they broke Cheetal’s legs so as to prevent them from meeting each other.
Knowing this, Mahendra arranged another camel but it was not as efficient as Cheetal and he lost his way. Meanwhile, Mumal was playing with her sister who was dressed as a man and acting on a skit. The two women kept talking and fell asleep on the same bed.
Now when Mahendra saw Mumal lying beside someone else he thought that she had cheated on him and left. Mumal tried a lot to convince him but he refused to meet her. One day to test her love, Mahendra sent her a message that he had died from a snake bite. Hearing this, Mumal lost her control and gave away her life in the sorrow of her beloved Mahendra’s demise. When Mahendra got to know the truth he lamented with guilt and sorrow. It’s said that Mumal threw herself into a flame and Mahendra also gave away his life by throwing himself in the same flame.
Since then the Mumal folk song is sung to praise the love and sacrifice of the couple who were madly in awe of each other. For the natives, this tale is nothing less than the story of Romeo and Juliet. In fact, the young girls aspire to be as beautiful as Mumal was believed to be.
To commemorate Mumal’s beauty there is a Ms. Mumal Beauty Contest organized in the Maru festival of Jaisalmer. In this, young girls get dressed in the traditional attire and compete in the contest which is like a beauty pageant.