What does “Jai Ho” mean?

A few weeks ago, I thoroughly enjoyed viewing the feel-good movie “Slumdog Millionaire” [see my review here] and my wife surprised me on Valentine’s Day by giving me the soundtrack CD of the movie.
The final song is called “Jai Ho” and is played during an exuberant dance sequence at the end of the film and in fact on Sunday it won the Academy Award for Best Song. You can listen to a sound clip of the song here and see the text of the lyrics here.
But what does “Jai Ho” mean (I’ve seen various suggestions) and what is the song all about? Can a Hindi-speaking reader of NightHawk illuminate us?


  • Roger Darlington

    I’ve had two comments – which I accidentally deleted (sorry guys) – advising that “Jai ho” means something like “May you have victory always”.

  • abel

    ho= Let it be
    Jai ho= May you be victorious

  • marie

    i love the movie and the soundtrack

  • Kevy Rae

    Click the URL.. Basically translates the whole song.
    Jai Ho pretty much means, “You Go!”
    You win, have victory, etc.

  • Roger Darlington

    There is now controversy over use of the song by political parties in India – see here.

  • Anonymous

    What does jai ho mean? i am confused …

  • Roger Darlington

    It seems that the literal meaning of “Jai ho” is something like “You go” and the colloquial meaning is something like “Victory to you”.

  • sarah

    People say it at Hindi celebrations and holidays. It’s not something you say commonly in a regular sentence. You can say it to bless someone or congratulate them 🙂

  • pippa

    I asked a friend who speaks Hindi and she said it means victory.

  • Franco Livinghert

    I think it means going opposite field on Saturdays.

  • kat starr

    it means all hail nev, and give him the light. hope i have bin of esistance

  • Ansh

    OK. Well now, this comes from an Indian who speaks Hindi 🙂
    Jai is derived from the word “Vijay” which means “Victory”. Jai ho in a simple way means (as been said earlier) let you be victorious.
    Its a term usually used either for praise, or to buck up during competition.
    In early times when the king used to arrive in his “darbar” (a place where he used to discuss the political affairs of his kingdom and other affairs with his ministers and also interact with the public), people used to shout slogans like “Maharajadhiraj (your highness) ki Jai Ho” meaning let our king be victorious.
    Even our God’s are praised with slogans like “Jai ho” to symbolize that the Holy Lord always wins i.e. triumph of good over evil.
    I think I’ve spoken enough. Any other questions feel free to ask me up!

  • lauren

    mi mate got twated for playin jai ho by 10 pikes sooo it must be hobble 2 them if they twated her for the song

  • Jack Hoff

    jai ho means i love you

  • yasmin

    Ahh yes I think it mean like “victory to you” or “go you”
    What’s with the one with “i love you”? haha

  • auralicioz

    I am wondering if Jai ho comes from the Hindi or Spanish language.
    Anybody knows?

  • Roger Darlington

    Hindi – not Spanish!

  • djamela lela

    hiiii jai ho really does mean victorious you / victory to you i dont no were ur going wi love and destiny

  • Ashu

    .. ‘jai ho’ in Hindi is a positive affirmation – giving positive strokes to encourage someone to continue and not give up … in the movie – it refers to Jamaal’s life as well as his unconditional love and search for Latika .. kinda used in the same manner as, “you go girl .. or boy” .. !

  • Anonymous

    jai ho because i got high because i got high because i got high

  • Fliss

    I’t means “I AM TOTALLY AWESOME” hope i helped 🙂

  • Steph :)


  • uhen


  • emily gee

    im sure that it means victory! most of u peeps have said that so im going with that! i had a argument with this guy last nite while having a drink at a party and he took the micky out of me coz i said i liked the song jai ho! basically he was saying are u asian? and i was like no im british! he was saying that i shoulnt listen to the song because i was not asian! well i dont egree with that if u like something it doesnt matter about ur colour or ur religion! also the bloke was black himself so he had a cheek to say was he said! then he started saying “do u even know what it means?” and i didnt so i was really embraessed so this is the reason y i come ova this site! NOW I KNOW WHAT JAI HO MEANS!!!!!

  • alana

    okay so i have a question for all of you..do you say it ji ho or jay ho?

  • hamhead

    its an awesome song – whatever it means! 🙂

  • nodehlyah

    i love the movie.the best movie ever.!!!!!!! they should have gotten more than 9 Oscars.!!!

  • rejel

    jai ho means (you are my destiny).

  • Sumiko

    It means “Victory to You.” in Hindi.

  • Josiee

    In the english version its jai ho. In the hindi one its ji ho. so whichever :]

  • ctxwringchik

    well it was kinda hard for me to figure out at first because the pussycat SLUTS said it wrong…and since it was in a song the pronunciation was not the best
    but like most of you have said i means that good has been victorious over evil
    basically like
    yay gooo you!!

  • beth

    jai in french means i have

  • Roger Darlington

    Yes, Beth – but this is a song in Hindi (with a bit of Spanish).

  • jaylea

    I must say that i agree with the pussycat dolls being sluty lol
    also Jai ho means
    ‘victory to you’

  • Kasey

    Jai Ho means “you are my destiny”

  • George Rocco

    i think its a stupid song

  • sofie

    haha i dear i thought it ment lewis hammelton 😛
    mah badd didnt watch slumdog so i didnt know it was in the movie

  • BobJR

    It a gay song but it has meaning ok!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • SandraaaC8

    jai isn’t french.
    It has to be; J’ai
    Then it’s “I have” in french. 😉

  • erika

    i love this movie and the song i am addicted =]

  • amee

    i prefer that version by the pussycat dolls (no offence) =p~
    But it is actual such a good movie lol :L

  • tom green

    jai ho means “dirty feet” there you go folks.

  • Sandman

    pussy cat dolls made a remix of jai ho and it SUCKS!!
    totally took the meaning out of it!! the success and jai ho literal translation.. Victory to you…but its just words of encouragement (usually said to pump up a person/people) its like saying power to the people!! or viva la revolution!! or you go girl!! lol
    Jai ho has nothing to do with the rest of the pussy cat dolls song thats about “going all the way” with someone.disgrace!

  • Anonymous

    no its not

  • Jake Smith

    Jai Ho means “I slept with my sister last night” hop this clareefais for all u guy. I dont sure really y u slept with my sister but that what it meants. thanking sirs

  • stardust287

    “can u consult a native Indian speaker for the real meaning of these words?” hehehe…
    “tum kisi inian say he is ka isal matlab pouch saktay ho?” hehehe…

  • Jai Lloyd Midwinter

    I am not Indian, I’m British, my name is Jai. I was told a few years back by my Indian Doctor that Jai means Victory. It may have been shouted during battle.

  • Ravi

    Hi all Enough Jai ho discussion i think.
    Lets learn a very common sentence of English and Hindi. in English its is ” I Love You” and its Hindi Brother is ” Muje Tumse Pyaar HAi”
    Next time you express your love for someone, do it this time with different way.

  • unknown

    they was cheering jai ho on big brother tonight.

  • joanne

    thank u for that i so wanted to no what they were on about in big bro last night so jai ho to u all


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