Bollywood personalities including Ashutosh Gowariker, Kay Kay Menon and Makarand Deshpande, launched author Raj Supe’s book When Life Turns Turtle: Journey of a Bollywood Tramp here.
Speaking at the launch event held in suburban Goregaon last evening, Gowariker said Supe was a very old friend he first met through Prithvi Theatre. “He did English translation of songs from my films Swades and Jodha Akbar. Lyricist Javed Akhtar was highly impressed by his translations,” Gowariker said.
Deshpande said, “I am part of an old troika, comprising actor Kay Kay Menon and author Raj Supe.” The three were roomates in their early days in Mumbai. “A cafe in suburban Santacruz was our favourite meeting point, where we held marathon debates,” he said.
Menon said he met Supe first during MBA classes in Pune, adding “we later got together in Mumbai.” “We were rich in thoughts but not in pockets. The first image of Supe which comes to mind is of him crouched on a table, devouring books. God has given him the gift to write. Supe dazzles in the art of storytelling,” the actor said.
“I have read the book. It flows like water. I think, the river Ganga, near which he resides now, is his inspiration,” he said while describing the author as a friend, philosopher and guide.
Actor Benjamin Gilani said literary icon Ruskin Bond has written the preface of the book. “I have written the foreword. Incidentally, I also went to same school in Shimla where Bond studied,” he said.
Swarup Nanda, CEO of Leadstart Publishing, publisher of the book, said Supe’s book will appeal to readers. “We have published many bestsellers and this will be another one.” The book launch was followed by a small session where all the dignitaries gathered and read excerpts from the book.
Supe (aka Kinkar Vishwashreyananda), is a poet, storyteller and novelist. An MBA, he has had a career in advertising, research and creative consulting, before turning to literary and spiritual pursuits. Some of his literary works include the spiritual memoir Pilgrim of the Sky; The Anthology Hundreds of Shells and translations such as Cloud Burst of A Thousand Suns and the Sahitya Akademi awarded Rainbow at Noon.
He has also worked on film scripts and plays. Menon said his writings convey the passionate intensity of a seeker and the sincerity of one who hopes for an ideal mix of traditional mythic imagery and the urgencies of modern life.
Supe is editor of the spirituality e-magazine The Mother, as well as the co-founder of Foundation for Contemplation of Nature. He was initiated into the order, founded by Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath, and met his guru in the person of Kinkar Vitthal Ramanuja. He now leads a simple life on the banks of the Ganges.