When we think of Radio Ceylon, only one name emerges in our brain and that of Ameen Sayani. He is definitely the most popular and most renowned radio announcer from India. He achieved worldwide fame, and especially in all across South Asia when he presented his hit countdown show How can we forget his signature address ‘Behenon aur bhaiyo…!’
His best-known radio show was; Binaca Geetmala, later renamed as Cibaca Geetmala which has been broadcasted since 1952 from Radio Ceylon, and later from Vividh Bharati, AIR – for a total of over 42 years.
Ameen Sayani (Born on 21 Dec 1932) started his career as an English broadcaster but when he went for an audition for AIR’s Hindi section, he was told after the test that there are hints of English and Gujarati in his accent and he cannot be recruited. But Sayani was not someone to be disheartened and went on to become one of India’s most loved radio presenters.
Ameen Sayani is from the family of Freedom Fighters, his mother was a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi. As advised by Mahatma Gandhi, his mother published The fortnightly, RAHBER (1940 to 1960), was simultaneously published in the Devnagri (Hindi), Urdu and Gujarati scripts – but all in the simple "Hindustani" language promoted by Gandhi. Sayani assisted his mother, Kulsum Sayani, in editing, publishing and printing a fortnightly journal for neo-literates.
He was introduced to All India Radio, Bombay, by his brother Hamid Sayani. Ameen participated in English programs there for ten years.
Beside announcer he has produced, compered (or spoken for) over 54,000 radio programmes and 19,000 spots/ jingles since 1951.
- Living Legend Award (2006) from Federation OF Indian Chambers OF Commerce & Industry, with India Radio Forum
- Kaan Hall Of Fame Award (2003) from Radio Mirchi (FM Network of the Times Group)
- Golden Abby by Advertising Club, Bombay (2000 ) for the OUTSTANDING RADIO CAMPAIGN OF THE CENTURY ( “Binaca/Cibaca GEETMALA” ).
- Hall Of Fame Award (1993) from Indian Academy Of Advertising Film Art (IAAFA)
- Person Of The Year Award (1992) Limca Book Of Records
- Gold medal(1991) from Indian Society Of Advertisers (ISA) presented by Mr. K.R. Narayanan, then Vice-President of India.