While movies without songs are a common phenomenon in Indian movies today, it all started as musicals once upon a time.
Neethi (Click for details) in malayalam was remake of Hindi film "Kanoon" - 1960 directed by B R Chopra starring Ashok Kumar, Rajendrakumar, Nanda etc . This was the first songless movie in Malayalam once the talkies came in existence
Kanoon was a super hit while Neethi flopped at the box office
In Tamil - "Andha Naal " -1954 - directed by Veena S Balachander was the first songless film for that language. The film was a huge hit with Sivaji Ganeshan in the lead role This was a murder mystery
Kanoon, Neethi, Andha Naal -were all songless films were based on murder mysteries !!
In Hindi, the Wadia Movietone film "Naujawan" - 1937 was the first songless film. Munna" 1954 directed by K A Abbas might be the second songless Hindi film