The story goes that Nizamuddin Auliya, who was unmarried himself, was deeply attached to his sister’s son, Khwaja Nuh. But the child died young and Nizamuddin was devastated by the loss. Amir Khusro couldn’t bear to see his master so afflicted and brought low, and tried desperately to make him smile again.
One day walking outside Nizamuddin’s house near the Khwaja’s khanqah at Chilla, Amir Khusro saw a group of village women walk by, dressed in bright yellow clothes and carrying mustard flowers and singing and clapping with guileless abandon. They were celebrating spring, they explained to the puzzled Amir Khusro, and were on their way to the Kalkaji temple where they would delight their goddess with song and dance. Enchanted by the story, Amir Khusro dressed up in a yellow sari, bedecked himself with mustard flowers, and appeared before Nizamuddin Auliya singing lusty songs in praise of spring. The saint saw his favourite disciple in the yellow sari and was startled out of his torpor. He smiled, and ever since, Basant Panchami has been celebrated thus at the Dargah of Nizamuddin.
Perhaps, the song Khusrau sang to his master that day was : फूल रही सरसों सकल बन (phool rahi sarson sakal ban)
Here’s a wonderful rendition by Warsi Brothers of Hyderabad who claim to be the descendants of the same tradition of Qawwals which Khusrau started some 800 years ago..