Zeenat Begum was a kothewali (courtesan) and a renowned classical singer. She was discovered by Pandit Amar Nath circa 1937. Her first success as a playback singer came in 1942 when she sang for Govind Ram's Punjabi film Mangti. The film was marked as first Golden Jubilee film produced in Lahore. Her first Hindi film was Nishani (1942). She sang for other notable films including Panchhi (1944), Shalimar (1946), Shehar se Door (1946) and Daasi (1944).
Zeenat Begum migrated from Lahore to Bombay in 1944. She sang for several music directors in Bombay, including Pandit Husan Lal Bhagat Ram, Ghulam Heather, Pandit Gobind Ram etc. The last film she sang for in India was Mukhda (1951). She migrated to Pakistan and joined Lahore Radio station and worked there until the late 1950s. She died on 12 November 1966 in Lahore.
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