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Penguin to publish Gulzar’s memoirs

It will feature anecdotes relating to eminent personalities such as Satyajit Ray, RD Burman, Kishore Kumar, Bimal Roy and Ritwik Ghatak.

Our Correspondent

Penguin Random House India has acquired the memoirs of veteran Indian poet, lyricist and film director Gulzar. The working title for the book is Actually... I Met Them: A Memoir, where the wordsmith will recount his encounters with some of the stalwarts of Indian cinema, art, literature and music. 

Gulzar will share anecdotes relating to the luminaries he has worked with during the course of his storied career. Satyajit Ray, RD Burman, Kishore Kumar, Bimal Roy, Ritwik Ghatak, Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Pandit Ravi Shankar, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, Mahasweta Devi and Samaresh Basu, are some of the people who will find a mention. Also, there will be chapters on contemporary filmmakers, writers, poets, musicians, singers and actors.

Speaking about the book, Gulzar said, ‘Memories don’t dry up really. They keep floating somewhere between the conscious and subconscious mind. It’s a great feeling to swim there sometimes. Pick up a few bubbly moments and cherish them again.’

‘I was fortunate to be born in the era of some of the greatest masters and was lucky that I actually met them. I got a chance to work with a few. There were Gurus, friends and colleagues among them.’

Premanka Goswami, executive editor, Penguin Random House India, stated that the book would make for a great read, saying, ‘We grew up with Gulzar Saab’s works.  His lyrics, poems, short stories and movies are a part of our upbringing and legacy.  He is a wizard with words. Actually… I Met Them will be a valuable addition to India’s publishing landscape. Just as the author, this book, too, shall be lively, freewheeling, almost lyrical and utterly engaging.  We are thrilled to have Gulzar Saab with us.’

The book will be published under the Hamish Hamilton and is slated for a 2021 release.