“My childhood was filled with witnessing a lot of domestic violence. My parents had a love marriage, but my dad used to beat her up every other day. When I was 5 years old, I was removed from a school dance performance because my father had done something fishy with the finances of my school fees. I didn’t understand anything back then, but my mother did everything she could to divert my mind…and that evening she took me for a magic show. I was so fascinated that I told her I wanted to be a magician and she bought me a magic kit and began my training. My first ever magic show performance was at the age of 5!
To keep me away from the problems at home, my mother made sure I was busy. I used to swim early in the morning, then badminton, school, rope- mallakhamb, basketball, then home, dinner and sleep. I became a National Level Rope Mallakhamb player and a State Level Badminton player…all because of my mother.
As I grew up, the violence continued and during my 10th standard, my mother was beaten up so badly that she collapsed with a broken spinal chord. My mother who was a news anchor with Doordarshan, had her face completely black and blue — and she was hospitalised for 6 months. Despite being constantly in the hospital, I passed my 10th with a first class and got into Sophia College. My Nana had a huge library at home, and I began picking up different languages from what he read to me. I wanted to pursue learning languages but because of the finances at home, I couldn’t afford classes. I would sell cards, crafts or cookies during every Diwali and Christmas break to save up for language tuition’s and that’s how my journey began.
During this time, my father was detected with HIV and we realised he even had another son…but still my mother took care of him till his last breath. He passed away when I was 19, and that was the time my mother and I were reborn. Since then I’ve mastered 27 languages, written 3 books and started my own Language learning Academy. I’ve travelled the world with my mother, exploring and discovering. I’m happily married with a beautiful son, and even though there have been difficult times I’ve always followed what my mother taught me — ‘smile through it all and it will get better’…and it did, for the both of us.”