"Take movies, music, poetry out of life & its gone!"
Gulzar's LIBAAS (1986-88) and its unreleased status. (Did You Know - 45)
03 Apr, 2013 | Did You Know!

The mid 80s film LIBAAS has a special importance in the heart of every true fan of the legendary poet, writer and director Gulzar due to an interesting fact associated with its existence. And the fact is that though the film was reportedly completed in the year 1986, but still it hasn’t been released in the theaters ever and cannot be found either in the home video market or over the net through any official or unofficial link till the day of writing this article in April 2013.
So where at one end you can easily see its publicity posters and also enjoy its worth listening soundtrack available on the web with only a click, there the film remains to be seen by almost all Gulzar fans and is still untraceable even after more than 25 years of its making since the late 80s.
Based on the theme of extramarital affairs written around the background of a theater group, it features Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi & Raj Babbar in its key characters and has music by the maestro R. D. Burman with lyrics penned by Gulzar himself. Talking about a subject which was considered to be quite bold and path breaking in that particular time period, the film probably got caught in the censor issues & other undisclosed disputes and couldn’t be released for the public as it is told. However it did won its due appreciation when screened in few International Film Festivals after few years.
Apart from its unique extinct status, LIBAAS enjoys a mystical kind of aura around its name mainly because of its four fabulous tracks which are, “Sili Hawa Chhoo Gayi”, “Khamosh Sa Afsana”, “Phir Kisi Shaakh Ne” and “Kya Bura Hai, Kya Bhala” sung by Lata Mangeshkar, Suresh Wadekar and Pancham Da himself. Its music cassettes were first released by WESTON company in the late eighties, which also had few dialogues of the film as I can remember. And later the tracks came on SAREGAMA (then HMV) in combination with few other Gulzar’s classics like IJAAZAT.
However all is not lost, if you are really interested in witnessing this invisible classic in a different form other than the usual moving images shot with the magical camera, as mentioned below.
Probably the last film of Pancham Da & Gulzar together, LIBAAS was later written in the form of a short story by the writer-director himself with the title of “CHAABI” (Key) which also got published under the name of “Seema” in his book “RAAVI PAAR”. So you can easily know the actual storyline of the film by reading this short story by Gulzar in his book comprising a compilation of his short stories.
Libaas - Script BookBut in case you are just not satisfied by this indicative plotline alone as a short story, then we also have its detailed SCRIPT published in a book form by Radhakrishan Publications, Delhi in hardbound form with more than 100 pages. The book is titled LIBAAS only with a short introduction by Gulzar, in which the veteran makes you aware of the journey of his thoughtful creation from an unreleased film to a short story and then as a script in the form of a book.
To say the least, LIBAAS is indeed a worth reading experience as a Script or Book based on the changing human relationships between its three lead characters, which deserves to be given a chance in this available form, till we get an opportunity to watch it in its original version of a film as conceived by its gifted creator called ‘Gulzar’.

With a hope that it will soon be made available somehow by the makers themselves.


Tags : Gulzars LIBAAS (1986-88) and its unreleased status, Did You Know Facts about Hindi Films, Bollywood Trivia, Unknown Facts on Bollywood, Unknown Gulzar, Unreleased Gulzar movie, Pancham Da, RDBurman, Film Scripts, Interesting Facts of Bollywood at bobbytalkscinema.com
03 Apr 2013 / Comments ( 18 )

I am a die hard fan of Gulzar and was always interested about the actual facts, why 'Libaas' was never released.

It is so good to see an article on this movie. Even I searched every possible way to watch that movie but it was never existed.
"Sili Hawa Chhoo Gayi" is my all time favourite. I wish, I had the opportunity to buy that script or that book but alas can't do much when you are overseas.

I really do appreciate this write up.

Bobby Sing

Hi Rajnish,
Thanks for your kind appreciation of this write-up and great to know that you are a die hard Gulzar fan too.....!

However I understand the complexities in getting the book in abroad but do try it from the following link as they may be able to send you the book somehow.

Keep Visiting and Writing in,

raj vardhan

Hello Sir!
Few years ago,I did see see libaas available on moserbaer or someother company. But I am sure it was libaas along with izzazat.I didn't knew much about libaas at that point of time,so I didn't buy it.
It was only last year..I came across its brilliant soundtrack and then I got to know about its storyline.I did try to get the movie but couldn't get it.

Bobby Sing

Hi Raj,
After reading your comment, I did confirm with the Moser Baer people and according to that they never released Libaas.
Moreover they didnt release any such combination but a same combination is right there in the catalogue of SAREGAMA (earlier HMV) which is an audio one.
So may be you saw an ACD in all possibilities. But if you are sure that it was a VCD or DVD then do try to recall where you saw it so that it can be traced again if possible.




Hi Bobby,
You did so much search, actually whenever I listen to the surprisingly soothing and kind of mystic songs of this movie I am filled with this feeling of ow to watch this movie.
Could it be a way to gather Gulzar saheb fans and approach him to release this movie... too much ambitious may be but its worth trying and failing than not trying...

Bobby Sing

Hi Pradyumn,
Thanks for visiting and praising the effort here, but actually the film making business works in a different manner wherein even the creator may not have control over the rights of its creation. In other words its actually the producer and not the director, who has the control over its release and when a film gets caught in any undisclosed trouble then its completely on the producer's wish that whether he wants to shelve it, complete it or leave it just like that.
So we can only hope & pray that its producers think of releasing it soon atleast on the home video market with a proper press release.
Till then keep visiting and writing in.



Nice to see other Gulzar fans (kadardaan) who are looking forward to this movie. I remember listening to the audio cassette that is being referred to in this forum. Its dialogues were so powerful. Each and every word had the capacity to take you in a different world. Who so ever said 'pen is mightier than a sword' said it for Gulzar. And 'Libaas' indeed is the masterpiece. I did try the link mentioned here. It seems its out of stock. Any other way to get the book. Can I photocopy from you guys ? Any other advice ?

Bobby Sing

Thanks for visiting and writing in Santosh,
and regarding the link please do try the following links too as they might help you in getting the book as desired:



Hi Bobby
Even I fill the same lik pradumnya....
When ever I listen this songs.. I fill to watch this movie... :(
Kash koyi muze ye movie lake de.... I will also ck out this links
For it's story ...
R there any audio CDs r available of this movie...
So that at least I can hear that movie.... ???
Bobby Sing

Hi Bhavana,
Thanks for writing in with your valuable comment.
Now though the movie is not available yet still you can see its trailer at the following link :

and then further search for most of its songs available at youtube and other music sites easily.



Hi Bobby,

Many thanks for sharing the vital info regarding Libaas however can you please suggest how can i lay a hand on this copy as it is out of stock with crossword..

Appreciate your support..

Bobby Sing

Thanks for visiting and writing in Suhaib.
Regarding the book, at the time of posting this comment it is available at the following link :


And if you are in Delhi (or any of your friend resides in Delhi) then you can straight away get that from the publisher only, which is RadhaKrishna Prakashan from the addresses given at the following link :


Keep Visiting and Writing in,

debjani banerjee
Please help us to watch the movie.There are so many people who are still waiting to watch the movie .it is not right thing with us who are Gulzar sahib Fans.
Bobby Sing

Yes Debjani Banerjee, we are all really eager to see the movie from so long. May be it gets soon released on the digital platform and hope this message somehow reaches Gulzar Saab and the film's producers too.

Thanks for writing in and Keep visiting.

Santosh M Bhavsar

Hi Bobby,

I am extremely grateful to you for sharing insights about Gulzar's sahab Libaas. Link any other fan, my thirsty eyes are also waiting to watch this movie some day.

For now I am on my way to place an order for the books, thanks a lot for sharing the links.

Cheers :)

Bobby Sing

The pleasure is all mine Santosh M Bhavsar and I hope you would love reading many other articles in the various sections of the site too.

sagar chaudhari

Hi Bobby. ......is there any possibility of to get video songs of libaas movie. .

Bobby Sing

Hi Sagar Chaudhari,
Sadly at this moment there is only a few minutes clip posted at Youtube and nothing else.
Hope we somehow get to see the film soon.


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