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For the demonym, see Bhopal. For other uses, see Bhopali (disambiguation).

Bhopali, also known as Bhoop, Bhoopali or Bhupali, is a Hindustani classical raga. It is a pentatonic scale (uses 5 notes in ascending and descending scale). Most of the songs in this raga are based on Bhakti rasa.

The same raga in Carnatic music is known as Mohanam.


Writing about the musical theory of Indian classical music is fraught with complications. There is no universally accepted set of rules or formal method of writing notations. However, the Bhatkhande and Paluskar paddhatis are the two ways of writing down musical notations. Indian music has always been more of an aural tradition, and written word has never been an essential part of imparting talim (training/knowledge).

Aroha & Avaroha[edit]

The scale of Bhopali uses only Shuddh swaras.

  • Aroha (ascent): Sa Re Ga Pa Dha Sa
  • Avaroha (descent): Sa Dha Pa Ga Re Sa

Vadi & Samavadi[edit]

Gandhar - Ga (here-after G but not to be confused with note G of western music notations)

Dhaivat - Dha (here-after D but not to be confused with note D of western music notations)

Pakad & Chalan[edit]

The Pakad (catchphrase that often helps in identifying a raga) is:

S R G R S D1 S R G or: S R G R S D1 S R G P G D P G R S or: G R P G G R S R D1 S or: G R S D1 S R G R P G D P G R S Some chalans (elaborations of the pakad) are:

1. S R G R S D1 S R G
2. S R G R S D1 P1
3. P1 D1 S R G R G
4. S R P G
5. G R S R G P
6. G P D P D D S’
7. P G P D P D S’ R’ G’ R’ G’
8. G’ R’ S’ D P G R S

Note: Normally written swaras (individual notes) indicate the middle octave. A swara immediately followed by 1 indicates the mandra saptak (lower octave) and ' indicates the taar saptak (higher octave

A few movements in Bhopali are important to note. There is typically a slide when descending between Sa and Dha, as well as between Pa and Ga. These slides parallel each other and can be used to create a symmetry about how the Swaras are developed. Also, many performers will bring out the Kalyan flavor of Bhopali by using abhasi of the notes Shuddha Ni and Tivra Ma. That is to say, these notes are only vaguely suggested in passing ornaments, not actually sung for long enough for the Swara to become a clear part of the Raga. Some examples would be:

(N1)D1 S

P(m)P(m) D P

where the notes in parenthesis are connected by slides or sung as meend.


This bandish is bound with Teentaal (16 beats).

1 2 3 4| 5 6 7 8|9 10 11 12|13 14 15 16|


D2 S D2 P |G2 R2 S R2|

G2 _ G2 P |G2 R2 S _ |

S R2 G2 P |R2 G2 P D2|

G2 P D2 P |G2 R2 S _ |


G2 _ G2 G2|P _ D2 P|

S' _ S'S'|D3 R3 S' _|

G3 G3 R3 S'|R3 R3 S' D3|

S' _ D2 P |G2 R2 S _|

The Asthayi starts with the 9th beat.

Organization & relationships[edit]

Raga Bhoopali belongs to the Kalyan Thaat.

Related ragas: Deshkar (a pentatonic raga belonging to the Bilawal Thaat with the same scale as Bhoopali). Shuddha Kalyan is another similar raga.


Behavior refers to practical aspects of the music. It is complicated to talk about this for Hindustani music since many of the concepts are fluid, changing, or archaic. The following information cannot be accurate, but it can attempt to reflect how the music existed.

Samay (Time)[edit]

Raat ka pehla pehr First part of night.(6 to 9)


Certain ragas have seasonal associations.


Bhakti Rasa (Devotional)

Historical Information[edit]

Important Recordings[edit]

E ri Aaj Bhaeelawa
Pratham sur saadhe (vilambit)

Lage re nain tum se - Ustad Fateh Ali Khan
Jab Se Tumi San Lagali - Kishori Amonkar
Sahela Re - Kishori Amonkar

Film Songs based on Bhoopali[edit]

Pankh Hote To Udd Aati Re( Sehra (1963))
Main Jahaan Rahoon( Namastey London (2007))
Dil Hoom Hoom Kare( Rudaali (1993))

Ghanashyam Sundara (Amar Bhoopali(1951))

See also[edit]


Bor, Joep (ed). Rao, Suvarnalata; der Meer, Wim van; Harvey, Jane (co-authors) The Raga Guide: A Survey of 74 Hindustani Ragas. Zenith Media, London: 1999.

Parrikar, Rajan. "Short Takes: Bhoopali and Deshkar." Rajan Parrikar Music Archive Short Takes Bhoopali and Deshkar Comments. SAWF Magazine, 5 Aug. 2002. Web. 2 Oct. 2015. <>.

External links[edit]