show was hosted during its entire run by Ameen Sayani, and
was very popular in India, with estimated listenership ranging
from 900,000 to 2,000,000. It greatly increased the popularity
of Radio Ceylon, making it the primary source of popular film
music on radio for the Indian subcontinent. The show later
aired on Vividh Bharati after 1988, and used to be on for
1/2 hour on Monday night.
At its onset in 1952, the program did not rank songs, but
rather played seven contemporary songs in no particular order.
Later, the program started ranking the most popular Hindi
film songs. The list was compiled initially on the basis of
a combination of sales of records in India and listener votes
to Radio Ceylon. The popularity was gauged on the basis of
record sales, record store owners verdicts and that "shrota-sanghs"(Hindi
for listeners clubs). These "shrota-sanghs" would
send in the popular songs every week. The clubs were formed
because it was possible that a record could sell out of stores
quickly and the store would be out of that records, so it
wouldn't show up on record sales, despite the record being
very popular. The year-end lists were compiled based on points
earned by songs through the year (sometimes between 1966 &
70, there would be no points on the weekly shows broadcast,
but the year-end shows would be based on point system).